Shirahama/ Tanabe is a region located in the central part of Wakayama prefecture. It includes the city of Tanabe and the county of Nishimuro.
This area has Kumano Sanzan, the Three Grand Shrines of Kumano (Kumano-Hongu-taisha Shrine, Kumano Nachi-taisha Shrine, and Kumano Hayatama-taisha Shrine), the end point of the pilgrimage route "Kumano Kodo (Wakayama).” Also, there are various hot springs in the area such as Shirahama Onsen, Yunomine Onsen, Ryujin Onsen, and Watarase Onsen etc. In addition, at Kawayu Onsen, you can dig your own bath in the river or join the Kawayu Onsen Sennin-buro River Bath, an unusual event held in the winter. Other than that, we recommend Shirahama Beach where you can enjoy swimming, or the Adventure World with about 1,400 animals.
It is convenient to have a car for getting around this area. When flying from major cities, the closest airport is Nanki Shirahama Airport and from there you can take a bus or rental car. From Haneda Airport in Tokyo, it takes about 1 hour and 15 minutes to fly to Nanki Shirahama Airport.
Map: Shirahama / Tanabe