This last weekend, Tami, Stephanie, and I planned to go to Okinawa. Okinawa is Japan’s answer to Hawaii. It is the most southern point of Japan, a group of islands about an hour and a half south of Nagasaki by plane. It is very hot and tropical there. It is famous for it’s many tasty fruits and also it’s American military presence.
I woke up at 5 on Friday morning, got ready and took a taxi at 5:45 to the airport bus stop. From there, it was a 40 minute bus ride to Nagasaki airport where I met Tami and Stephanie. We got our tickets and to our gate in less than 15 minutes (I’ve never been through security so easily) and took our seats. Here are some pics from the plane…
This is Nagasaki on take-off. I like this picture because you can see Iwojima and the bridge. Can you see Iwojima? It’s the island at the top of the photo.
Our first view of Okinawa. Looking forward to beautiful beaches!
We arrived in Okinawa’s Naha Airport and gathered our maps. After a quick check with a guide, we found a bus that would take us near our hotel.
On the bus from the airport.
Tami has a friend that lives in Okinawa that we planned to meet. She had some stuff planned and said she would show us around. She also has a car, so we were excited for what she would show us.
We found our hotel. This is it from the outside. Doesn’t look like much, but it was pretty great for how cheap it was.
We unloaded our stuff and went to meet Tami’s friend, Sawako at International Street for lunch.
On the way.
International Street is pretty close to our hotel so it didn’t take us long to get there and find Sawako. She was very friendly and easy to get along with. We started by walking around and looking at things on International Street.
Snake Liquor. It’s supposed to have a cinnamon-like taste.
We scoped out restaurants and settled on an Okinawa Soba place. I don’t remember much about it other than that I tried sea grapes… which are “grapes that live under the sea.” They were pretty good, I thought. They are very tiny and kind of sour.
We went to Okinawa World for our first trip. There is a huge cave and village there.
In the Okinawa World cave.
When we got out of the cave (which was quite long), we went and got some drinks in the village. We wandered a bit, looking at the scenery:
But then we saw this:
They are tiny fish that eat dead cells and skin off of your feet for you and makes them smooth. It was an interesting sensation…
Tami and Sawako enjoying the fish.
We also saw Eisa, traditional Okinawan drum dancing…
They were very good.
We stopped at a tea house and got bubble tea:
Then, we decided to head back. By the time we got back to International Street, it was dark.
International Street at night.
Anti-American military presence march.
A very funny depiction of an American.
From International Street, we drove over to American Village for dinner.
American Village. There’s an A&W in this picture, but it’s difficult to see.
I also saw some priceless Engrish in a hat store:
The End Justfiles the Means.
There is a time to speak and a time to be speak.
We ate at an Itallian restaurant and had pizza! It was good, but pricey.
Tami and Sawako being precious at the restaurant.