[ Apr.2019 ] In the morning of the second day on Miyako-jima, one of the islands in Okinawa prefecture in Japan, I felt a bit dull and heavy because of the Awamori, the local strong drink we had had the night before.
I was annoyed with myself, as this was the beginning of our holiday, but when we opened the curtain of our hotel room, we saw the dreamlike colour of the sea and that excited me and woke me straight up.
First, we went for breakfast.
There were two breakfast restaurants in our hotel called Tokyu Hotel & Resorts: one was for buffet and the other was for Japanese breakfast.
We mainly used the buffet one, but one day we went to the Japanese restaurant and found it nice and quieter.
On this day, we arrived at the restaurant at the peak time, so we had to wait.
It seemed that this happens often enough here and they were offering coffee and other drinks for the waiting people.
The quality of the breakfast was good.
After eating, we went to the leisure counter at the hotel lobby where they arrange activities, such as snorkelling and diving.
Unfortunately because of my husband’s foot injury, we could not do any adventurous activities, so instead, we decided to go around the island by taxi.
Almost all the visitors to the island seemed to rent a car, but because we do not drive in Japan, we used taxis, which were rather costly.
There are bus services, but they are not frequent, so unless you plan very well, you could get stuck.
The hotel had sight-seeing taxi routes, but people at the leisure counter helped us to organise our own route.
The fee is fixed: 3,800 yen (£27, €31, $35) per hour.
The woman at the counter seemed reliable, so we just relied on her, but when the taxi came to pick us up, the driver asked us ” Where do you want to go?”.
He did not know that we wanted a tour.
So we had to call the woman and let her explain to him.
She was very apologetic saying “This is an example of the relaxing way of our living on the island”.
Finally, we started.
The first place we went to was Kurima-jima, another small island diagonal to the front of our hotel.
Miyako-jima is connected with three smaller islands by bridges and Kurima-jima is one of them.
We crossed the Kurima Ohashi bridge, which was opened in 1995 after 8 years’ construction with a length of 1,690 metres.
It was refreshing driving through the sea of emerald green.
It may be good to cycle here to feel nature more closely.
We went to the Ryugujo Observatory on Kurima-jima.
The observatory was rather old, but the view from there was fantastic.
The colour of the sea was really amazing.
I could have stayed there longer, but after a while enjoying the view of paradise, we went back to Miyako-jima.
By the way, a friend of mine who had been here told me that although Kurima-jima is small, there are some stylish cafes and shops there.
At the foot of Kurima Ohashi bridge on the Miyako-jima side, there is Maehama Beach which stretches up to our hotel.
This beach is 7km long and apparently it is the longest white sand beach in the East.
People were enjoying some marine sports there.
But that does not mean that there were many people.
You could enjoy the luxury of having this paradise almost to yourself.
I went into the water just a bit, taking off my sandals, and found that the water was already warm enough to swim in on the day of late April.