January 31, 2017

MIYAKO OKINAWA DAY 3 - YOSHINO BEACH

3 days in and we are really getting used to a beach life of sand, sea and blue skies. We've completely recovered from all the crazy walking since landing in Tokyo almost 2 weeks ago, but feeling sad that we only have another 2 days left in Okinawa and then it's back home to London.

Life in Okinawa is quite different to life on mainland Japan. Okinawan folks lead a simple and happy life here, it's super chilled out and it has a country/farm-life charm to it. The style of food can be described as rustic and homely with produce and dishes that are purely Okinawan.

Today, we'll be heading to Yoshino beach which is the best beach for snorkelling in Miyako. It's home to a plethora of tropical fish and coral reef. We read that there is an uncle who calls himself the beach keeper of Yoshino and we hope to spot him!

We start the day off with the inclusive breakfast the hotel provides, which we've missed for the last 2 days. The food is good. It's mainly all Japanese offerings and what we found heavy to eat for breakfast when we first arrived in Japan, such as fried fish with rice and miso soup, has now become a firm favourite. Cornflakes and milk will never be the same again.

After breakfast, we're full and sleepy so we take a morning nap because lazy naps are compulsory when on holiday. It's lunchtime before we head to Yoshino beach.

We're dropped off in the parking lot where there's a rental shop to pick up snorkelling gear and for a small fare, we hitch a ride to the beach in the shop's little van. Turns out, if we'd walk, it would have taken us a good 20 minutes.

It's another stunning beach. Not long after we arrive, we notice beautiful cloud formations which kept us quite mesmerised.

As soon as we step into the sea, swarms of fish swim right up to us. Being a bit of a scaredy cat and not wanting the fish to touch my skin, I splashed with all my might and that did the trick of keeping them at bay haha. They would literally swarm around those who were offering bread!

Snorkelling ended up being a ton of fun. There were so many different types of fish and the coral life was especially stunning. I wasn't brave enough to swim further out but I could see even more amazing fish and coral in the distance. The amount of marine life this close to shore in this part of the island is quite a contrast to Maehama beach and Sunayama beach. Three beaches all on the same island but so different to each other, all with it's own charm and merits.

We take a break from snorkelling on the free chairs and then we spot the uncle beach keeper of Yoshino beach!

He came up to us to say hi and spoke in perfect English. He's just lovely and even gave us a necklace made from seashells as a memento! We're told Yoshino beach is even more spectacular in the evening but sadly we are not staying long enough to see.

We head back to the carpark lot in the rental shop's van and return the snorkelling gear. Our taxi driver uncle is ready and waiting to take us back to the hotel. After a quick shower in our room, we're off to check out the retail park and I'm itching to go to the huge supermarket there to do a final sweep of goodies to bring home. We rent bikes from the hotel reception and it's a short 10 minute peddle away.

We're peckish when we get there, so it's dinner first. I'm ready for a bowl of Okinawa soba noodles and we pick one with pork belly and fishcake, and one with pork belly and tendons. We also order a round of gyozas and a side salad.

After a supermarket sweep and having a browse at the large electronics shop, we take a break and this means Japanese McDonald's.

Cheeseburger and small fries it is. The butter soya sauce is a flavouring sachet for shaking over the fries and I go gaga for it. It's extremely tasty.  

Sadly the shops are closing for the evening and there's no time to check out the Japanese Daiso store, the equivalent to our £1 shop but much higher quality. Damn it. It's a juggle and struggle to balance 2 huge supermarket bags on our bike but we managed to get back to the hotel and call it a night.


Read the rest of our Japan Travels here!



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Maira Gall