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Lake Shinji

Seafood and sunsets to die for — the biggest lake in Shimane is an aquatic pantry of delicious delicacies, with stunning views to boot.

Lake Shinji is one of the biggest lakes in Japan, and one of its most ecologically rich. Since Japan is by and large a fisherman’s nation, this means that Shinji-ko provides Matsue City with some fantastic varieties of seafood. Look out over the water and you’re likely to spot dozens of small boats gathering these delicacies.

They include a local variety of clams, whitebait, shrimp, clams, eel, bass smelt, and carp. Each has its own peak season throughout the year, and you’ll find plenty of restaurants in the area where you can sample the freshest catches of the day. Part of the reason for the lake’s diversity is that it’s connected to the sea via a lagoon, giving it a mix of salt and freshwater.

Food aside, the sunsets here are also worth writing home about. They look spectacular from anywhere along the 50km of shoreline along the lake, but are best enjoyed from the viewing platform by the Shimane Art Museum. Or why not take a sunset cruise out onto the water?

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