Tottori Sand Dunes

The city of Tottori’s main attraction is some huge sand dunes, the only in Japan. They are of impressive scale, 20-30 metres high, the whole system goes on for many kilometres. The day we visited it was unfortunately raining however this only added to the whole experience as a low mist created a great post-apocalyptic scene.

We set out from Tottori University in what would become a common sight for us, the bus.

Tottori University Bus

The Tottori sand dunes are probably what the prefecture and city are best known for domestically. Of course that is selling the whole place short but certainly it’s huge sand dunes are a selling point and the last thing you’d expect in Japan. Yet the day we visited the weather was terrible, it is meant to be clear skies and dessert like conditions instead we found pea soup where we could barely see the top of the dunes.

Tottori Sand Dunes

The area attracts many tourists so has a range of facilities and car parking. Stepping towards the sand there is a few metres of boardwalks but then you’re on your own. Walking down the gentle slope we soon would lose each other in the mist, which was rather cool. We would see a small body of water protected by the main dune, I assume fairly permanent given the vegetation.

Beyond this water it’s a long walk up the largest dune. Once we reached the top however, we could see the ocean down below.

Tottori Sand Dunes

Apparently nobody runs down this main dune but that didn’t stop us. I think everyone ran down, mostly in one piece. Photos don’t do justice of course, it would be very good for sandboarding although I’m not sure if that is a thing here.

Tottori Sand Dunes

I was still feeling quite ill from the past week so somewhat regretted running up and down a second time. We moved back to the information centre where I tried to get myself back together the group looked through some of the shops.

Although the weather was terrible it did make for a fantastic scene out of an apocalypse. Maybe can visit again sometime to see the difference.

Tottori Sand Dunes Apocalypse



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