Oarai town is a fishing village located about 1.5-2 hours north of Tokyo. It is known for its seafood, a great place to surf, beautiful beaches, including a reflection beach that is great for taking photos, a Torii gate on a cliff in the sea, a huge aquarium (Aqua World), a sake brewery and much more.
It is located next to Mito city and Hitachinaka city, and is convenient to get to either by train or car from Tokyo.
When you arrive you will find that Oarai is quite a small town with all the main attractions on the coast within cycling range, so you may want to rent a bicycle from Umimachi terrace next to Oarai station and cycle around town for the day.
While you’re in the area, we also suggest looking up the best time to take a photo on Sun Beach (the reflection beach) which is a popular spot for photographers.
Oarai is also known for being the location for popular anime ‘Girls und Panzer’ and you will see the characters in many store windows.
There are also hotels with ocean views and a new beautiful glamping site with cube tents worth checking out if you have time to stay the night.
Furthermore, the port has daily ferries to Tomakomai in Hokkaido for people wishing to journey there.
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The local speciality of Oarai is, of course, its seafood. Freshly caught fish and seafood can be enjoyed at many seafood restaurants dotted around town. Choose from fresh sashimi or sushi right from the vendors, visit a pick-what-you-like and grill it shop, or visit a more traditional restaurant. Oarai has plenty to choose from.
Aside from seafood, Oarai also offers plenty of other restaurants serving traditional Japanese food. You can find Izakaya’s along with shops serving Yakitori, Ramen and other Japanese favourites. There are plenty of restaurants to provide alternatives in case seafood is not your thing.
Aside from seafood and traditional Japanese restaurants Oarai also has a few western style places for visitors to eat at. Some with a great view, others conveniently located at the Aquarium or local shopping complex. A great alternative in case you would like something a little different or crave a taste from home.
A small European style restaurant with delicious homemade food prepared with local ingredients hand-picked by our chef.
Because Oarai is a small town, there are not many accommodation providers. Here are a few.
NEW SAKAEYA HOTEL
Traditional Japanese 2 Star Accommodation located near Sun Beach featuring karaoke & complimentary parking.
Located a short 10min walk from the station Mairinkan offers casual tatami rooms with futons as well as a small hot spring.
Oarai also has a newly open glamping site featuring dome tents within a few minutes walk to Sun Beach.
There are a few nice holiday homes and airbnbs available in the area.
Find the full list of airbnb’s available at airbnb here.
There is a popular guesthouse in the center of the city. As well as bunkbeds there are some Japanese tatami rooms suitable for a group of 2-3people on a budget.
Type: Western Style Business Hotel
Location: 4 min drive from JR Tochig Station. (located in city center)
Location: 4 min drive from JR Tochigi station. (located by the river in city center)
Type: Holiday rental
Location: 12 min drive from Mashiko station
We’ve created a special online guide about Mashiko to help overseas visitors explore Mashiko. Click the image to discover more!
We’ve created a Mashiko Photo gallery to help overseas visitors and travel companies see what Mashiko has to offer. Click the image to discover more!