Clamming – Shio hi gari

clamming clams


Came across a powerful looking tool / weapon in my local DIY store the other day. My first impression was that it was straight out of The Nightmare on Elm Street series. A few questions later, I found out that it was a ninja kumade (rake or pitchfork – see thumbnail at end of post), used to dig clams.

500 yen later, I had all the neccesary equipment needed to embark on my first clamming adventure, a ninja kumade and a bucket.

Futtsu Kaigan (in Chiba) is located a couple of hours drive from Tokyo. Opening times vary depending on the tides.


clamming 1


I took this photo just before the day began, with a long line of people behind me anxious to begin the hunt.

One friendly staff member told me, “20, 000 people were expected to come over the weekend, and 2 tonnes of clams were awaiting there arrival”.

After paying the entrance fee of 1,600 yen, I was ready to dig my fair share of clams.


clamming 2


5 minutes after opening time I took this photo. You can see the hardcore hunters out the back, getting the prized clams.

1 and a half hours later, I had a bucket full of fresh clams and a wet backside.

Luckily I brought a change of clothes with me.


Top 5 Clamming Spots in Japan (2013)

1. Kisarazu Kaigan in Chiba – Adult : 1, 400 yen Child : 700 yen

2. Shinmaiko in Hyogo – Adult : 1, 400 yen Child : 700 yen

3. Futtsu Kaigan in Chiba – Adult : 1, 600 yen Child : 800 yen

4. Usigome Kaigan in Chiba – Adult : 1, 400 yen Child : 700 yen

5. Nishiki no Hama in Osaka – Adult : 1, 500 yen Child : 750 yen


Clam seasons runs from March til August.


clamming buckets     clamming tool

3 Responses to “Clamming – Shio hi gari”

  1. Sue says:

    I want to do this will I be able to next time I come to Japan?

  2. Kate says:

    Is the fee inclusive of all the clams that you get?

  3. LIVEJAPAN says:

    Each place is different however you will have a limit of usually 2 kilograms, and over that 800 Yen for every kilogram.

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