The only place in Japan where you can drive on the edge of the surf
Chirihama is a coast in the Hokuriku Region, facing the Sea of Japan. Because natural shellfish such as Japanese littleneck and common orient clams are produced here, small stalls selling hamayaki (grilled shellfish and fish caught in the sea) are set up along the coast from spring to summer. Casual stallholders luring customers, and the savory fragrance of grilled seafood, are characteristic features of this place.
There is a road named "Chirihama Nagisa Driveway," which is famous as the only place in Japan where cars can be driven on the edge of the surf. The road is available for bicycles, standard-sized cars, motorbikes, and large buses. You can drive about 8 km along the beach and feel the sea breeze. (Traffic is restricted in bad weather, including when waves are large).
The sea is shallow until far offshore, and the beach is crowded with beachgoers in summer. Events of marine sports, including beach volleyball and jet skiing, are also held. The sea changes appearance season to season, e.g. it is blue in summer and gray in winter, and you can spend time there as you like regardless of the season of the year. However, the corrosion of the sand beach has been notable in recent years, and the beach is facing a crisis in that the coastline is moving inland as fast as 1m per year. Please keep in mind that you can enjoy the beach thanks to the efforts of people working to protect the environment here.
Address: Aomachi, Hakuicity, Ishikawa
Phone: 0767-22-5333 (Hakui City Tourist Association)
Admission Fee: Free
Directions: 20 minutes on foot or 3 minutes by car from Hakui Station on the JR Nanao line (about 3 hours and 20 minutes from Nagoya Station by limited express train). (Car) Imahama Interchange or Chirihama Interchange on Noto Toll Road.