One of Japan's official top three scenic sites, the unspoilt area of Matsushima is famous for its sea views and sunsets.
Seemingly miraculously Matsushima Bay was spared the devastation that followed the 2011 tsunami. Just a short local train ride from the city of Sendai, but the peaceful beach strolls and old piers jutting into the bay are a world away from the hustle and bustle of modern Japan. Apart from public holidays this area is one of the quietest along the whole southern coast of Japan, and it is a real treat to have the views across the island-studded bay virtually to yourself. The best way to see it is by bicycle, which local accommodation staff will happily lend you.
On the way from Matsushima town to the bay, stop off and take the boat that goes past the hidden coves and the blankets of greenery on some of the small islands. From the drop-off point you can approach the bay on walkways extended over marshland, and maybe even spot a heron or two standing majestically over the water. Nature is left virtually untouched, although modern Japan does pop up in the shape of vending machines which are as incongruous as the ones at the top of Mt Fuji.
For the slightly more intrepid traveller, it is well worth making the relatively short but steep climb up the hillside immediately beside the bay, taking care not to catch your foot in any of the tree roots on this old path. From the lookout station, you can drink in views of the sparkling sea and the fishing boats bobbing serenely upon it. As night falls and various birds and creatures pipe up from the lush hillside foliage, make your way back down to the bay and hopefully catch one of Matsushima's unforgettable sunsets.
Weather in Matsushima
The Climate Guide for Matsushima, Japan is perfect for planning your holiday. Monthly weather averages give the best indication of what the weather is usually like for every month of the year including figures for temperature, rainfall and sunshine.
|Max Daytime Temperature (°C)||5||5||8||15||20||23||26||28||24||19||13||8|
|Min Night-time Temperature (°C)||-3||-3||0||5||10||15||19||20||16||10||4||0|
|Hours of Sunshine (Daily)||5||5||6||6||7||5||5||6||4||5||5||4|
|Hours of Daylight (Daily)||10||11||12||13||14||15||14||14||12||11||10||10|
|Heat and Humidity Discomfort||None||None||None||None||None||None||Low||Moderate||None||None||None||None|
|Days with some Rainfall||22||20||21||17||17||19||20||19||19||18||18||20|
|Monthly Rainfall (mm)||75||84||97||120||114||150||159||184||191||135||109||80|
|UV Index (Maximum)||2||3||4||6||8||9||10||9||7||5||3||2|