The evening colours near the Uchi Umi fishing harbour (Photo: Iain Stanley)

A Secret Treasure in Miyazaki

Cycle to Uchi Umi's coastline, rivers, and waterfalls

The evening colours near the Uchi Umi fishing harbour (Photo: Iain Stanley)
Iain Stanley   - 3 min read

When people come to Miyazaki they typically go to the well known spots of Aoshima, Takachiho, and perhaps Nichinan, in the south. This is understandable as these three places are beautiful and well worth visiting. However, for people who've spent a little more time in this southern Kyushu paradise, there are many well hidden spots that bring delight to those who know about them.

One such place is Uchi Umi. Located about 25 minutes' drive south of Miyazaki city centre, it is essentially a fishing harbour that attracts amateur fishermen in their dozens each day. As it's a seaside village, it has a beautiful, rugged coastline, and rivers that feed into some incredibly lush, verdant forests that are full of waterfalls and swimming holes.

It is easy to drive there if that's what you like, but I think the best way to get there is to ride your bicycle. If your legs are strong enough and you're up for one of the most incredibly relaxing rides you'll experience in Japan, you can start from Aoshima and ride the 8kms along the coastline to Uchi Umi. The beauty of this ride is that not only is it pretty much car-free, it is literally a stone's throw from the ocean all the way. You get to enjoy the views along the Aoshima stretch, then go past the white sands of Shirahama up to the Cinq Mare hotel. From there, you ride along a coastal path that is devoid of cars. If you're not that bike-fit, you can drive to Shirahama and start from there.

The beauty of this ride is that you can stop as often as you like and take as many pictures as you want without the interference of people, or cars. Whether you prefer seascape photos, landscape, cloudbursts, or forest shots, everything is at your whim along this ride. And the great thing is, once you reach Uchi Umi there's a Lawson convenience store there to provide refreshments. If you'd prefer a longer rest in order to reinvigorate yourself for the ride home, there are a number of restaurants on the coastal road just past Lawson too, including a very nice 2-story buffet lunch place that has magnificent views overlooking the ocean.

You can take half a day to ride to Uchi Umi and back at a leisurely pace, or even less time if you start at Shirahama. Either way, it's a journey you won't forget. You can rent bicycles at the hotels and minshukus in Aoshima, or from the Aoshima lifeguard hut at Aoshima beach. All in all, it's a great day that anyone can enjoy.

Iain Stanley

Iain Stanley @iain.stanley

Hi, my name is Iain. I was born in Sydney, developed through adventures round Asia and Europe, and refined and settled in Miyazaki, Japan. Through the Japan Travel site and my own website at I try to show people what a beautiful place Miyazaki is. You have to look har...