they exist and they are as amazing as Mount Fuji

Perhaps you might think that there are no dunes in Japan. After all, these great mountains of sand always tend to remind us of deserts or Egypt. Or it can even remind us of part of the Brazilian northeast.

However, nature in Japan is amazing and there are also dunes there. The most incredible thing is that in this small country you can find from dunes to regions where it is cold all year round.


So, learn more about the dunes there and how they are simply incredible.

The dunes in Japan


Although there are dunes in Japan, obviously, they do not occupy a vast part of the country’s territory. It doesn’t even come close to the Sahara desert, for example. However, there it is possible to have a lot of fun, walking through mountains that look more like Mount Fuji because they are so steep and also taking an incredible camel ride.

We are talking about the Tottori Sand Dunes (鳥取砂丘, Tottori Sakyu). They are large sand dunes located outside the city center and are the most famous tourist attraction in Totori.

So, in all, there are about 16 kilometers of coastline along the Sea of ​​Japan and are up to two kilometers wide and 50 meters high. They are part of the Sanin Kaigan National Park.


The sand dunes were created over thousands of years as sand from the nearby Sendaigawa River was washed out to sea and eventually redeposited along the coast by ocean currents. Today, tidal movement and coastal winds continually shape the dunes and provide an ever-changing landscape.

The main tourist area covers a half kilometer strip of sand between the visitor center and the sea. Many of the largest sand dunes are found here, and their tops provide visitors with beautiful views of the coast. From here you can also explore the vast expanses of sand that stretch for several kilometers in almost every direction.

There are also a number of other attractions to enjoy around the dunes. Camel and buggy rides traverse the dunes, while the more adventurous can try paragliding or sandboarding (a variation of snowboarding) which are offered by local companies. Views over the dunes can be enjoyed from the Sakyu Center’s observation deck, which is connected to the sand dunes by a cable car.


Read too:

The museum with the sand dunes in Japan

One of the biggest events for those who go there is also the sand museum.

The Sand Museum was opened in Tottori in 2006 with an outdoor exhibition with Italy and the Renaissance as the main theme. Since then, it has maintained the transnational focus, moving from tents to an exhibition hall that traditionally hosts eight-month “Around the World in the Sand” events. Earlier sculptures depicted scenes from different regions of Asia, Austria, Africa, the United Kingdom, Russia, the United States, the Nordic countries, the Czech Republic and Slovakia.

Source: Japan Guide and Gaijin Pot

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