Isso Beach is a relaxing get-away to visit while at the famous island of Yakushima, located off the southern coast of Japan’s mainland.
The island itself, in Kagoshima Prefecture, is famous partly because of the classic Studio Ghibli anime film “Princess Mononoke.” It is also Japan’s first UNESCO World Heritage site and is a picturesque, untouched haven for outdoors sports like mountain hiking and river kayaking.
Among Yakushima’s vast nature are some outstanding — yet not widely visited — beaches.
Isso beach is a smaller, more secluded beach located on one side of a small peninsula. With clear, turquoise water and white sand, the beach is great for some light snorkeling and has everything you need for a beach day. There are a few shops that serve refreshments and rentals for beach items. It has has fairly clean bathrooms and showers for public use. It’s also staffed with a life guard during part of the summer months.
While the beach is a bit inconvenient — no train access anywhere on the island — it, and the island itself, is worth a trip for a holiday.