Beach Bums: Okinawa pt 1

Thank you for the warm welcome back!

Back to regular posting now.

I would like to start proceedings with letting you in on our trip to Kumejima.

Kumejima is a tiny likkle island off the coast of Okinawa (which in turn is a 2 hour flight from Tokyo).

Hiro and I visited Okinawa 2 years ago in fact it was on the island of Tokashiki where he proposed.
I know….we are like a pot of mushy peas sometimes!

Anchors away.Perhaps it’s because he is an island boy, but Hiro loves sailing.
Most people fly to Kumejima but not us! We took the 4 hour ferry across the deep blue waters of the pacific to reach our destination.

Nothing but cloud, sea and sky.It’s a strange sort of melancholy watching rain dance through clouds in the distance.

Finally, we did reach our destination;
Cypress Resort.

It’s nice to have a pool with a view.

By the time we reached the hotel we were absolutely famished.
Must be all that sea air!
Lunchtime I say!Hiro had the Okinawa Soba.
This has to be one of the nicest freshest tasting that we have ever had. Not too salty, very green and refreshing in fact.

As for me it was all about Tempura Moriawase Okinawan style which included a selection of prawn, fish, rakyo (sort of a Japanese shallot), seaweed, sweet potato and pumpkin and of course…..
Up until this point in my life I was NOT a prawn fan.
Kumejima changed that.

Kumejima is big on sugar cane!
It is everywhere! This is a little troublesome at night as we were advised not to go for strolls in the dark. The reason is that it was Habu season. I paid heed as snake bites are not my favourite way to celebrate a honeymoon!

We were lucky enough to come across a great taxi driver on our 1st night. He was great for restaurant recommendations. We stuffed ourselves stupid! The restaurant is really popular with locals, I think it was called “Haifun“?

Miso Nasu (aubergine)
which was succulent and robust in flavour.
I love agedashi tofu:
with goya and aubergine and a good dollop of daikon.

This little piggy is STILL eating!We ordered enough food for 4! The waitress was baffled.

is the tipple of choice in Okinawa and Kumejima has it’s own:

Next day was beach day!
Welcome to hate no hama.
Hate no hama is a 7km long sand bar 20 minutes boat ride away from Kumejima main island. To us it was a slice of paradise.

Nothing grows here so I am glad I brought my hat!
Hiro is a pole dancer!

I never expect to find such marvellous beaches in Japan.

Back to the hotel for some poolside larking:
Then it was time to think about our tummies again.
This time our helpful driver took us to a place called Namiji.
Please sir may I have some more prawns?
Kumejima is famed for is Kuruma ebi. Which I think can be referred to as black tiger prawns. These are cultivated on the islands are a good size at about 12cm.
They taste fabulous and like all good seafood, they need very little done to them, just grilled with a touch of salt and let the freshness speak for itself.

And THIS is a seafood salad!!
See why I won’t touch that crap they try to give me here in London?
No sandy mussels here!

Before we headed back to Okinawa proper we had time to loiter around and take in more sights in O-jima just north of Kumejima:

I was born to live by the sea.

This is Tatamiishi
Strange but beautiful rock formations.

Sitting, watching, waiting.

The final thing we did before getting the ferry back to Okinawa was to grab some
beni imo ice cream.
This ice cream was delicious. Not too sweet, delicately fragrant with such an elegant flavour that just hints at the sweet potato.