A lazy day at Okinawa 輕輕鬆鬆在沖繩島的一天
This is a throwback to my trip to Okinawa last year.
Okinawa is located south of Japan and is actually much closer to Taiwan than Tokyo. It’s just over 600km from Taiwan to Okinawa, whereas from Okinawa to Tokyo is over 1500km. This was the perfect getaway for me last year. Historically, Okinawa belonged to the Ryukyu Kingdom which was separate from Japan, therefore they have a slightly different culture. That, plus the fact it has a lot of beautiful beaches around the coastline, and quite a large US military presence on the island, makes it quite unique, quite un-Japan.
With the geography and history done, let’s look at what’s so great about Okinawa. First, its compact and easy to get around on the main Okinawa Island. For me at least, as they drive on the left hand side of the road like UK.
A great place to drive around is from the Katsuren peninsula across the Kaichu-doro Causeway to Henza Island then across the Hamahiga Bridge to Hamahiga Island. I didn’t explore either of these islands as all I wanted to do was to drive around surrounded by the Pacific Ocean.
The Kaichu-doro Causeway is actually a 5.7km bridge, you can see the red bridge which is on the right hand side of the photo. There wasn’t much traffic when I went, and there were plenty of spaces at the lay by for people to wander along the promenade. I went for a stroll. With hardly a soul in sight, all I had was the sea breeze and gentle waves accompanying me.
Here’s the Hamahiga Bridge behind me. At just 1.7km its much shorter and takes me to a much quieter part of the world. I hanged around the Hamagyoko Ryokuchi Park for a while, not doing anything at all (not that there was anything to do here), which is the best part of being on holiday.
我背後的正是浜比嘉大橋，只有1.7km 但卻把我帶到另一處更加寧靜的地方。 我在浜魚港綠地公園坐了一陣子，什麼也沒做( 其實附近根本沒有什麼好做)。去旅行有時就是要這樣享受一下， 不用所有時間都趕著去吃喝玩樂參觀景點。
In the afternoon, I went back to the mainland to the Katsuren Castle ruins. Katsuren isn’t as famous as the Shurijo Castle near Naha, or the Nakijin Castle remains near the Churaumi Aquarium. Maybe because it’s on the west and further away from those popular landmarks and less tourist come to this side of the island.
下午我回到本島到勝連城跡逛逛。 勝連城跡沒有那霸市附近的首里城，或水族館附近的 今歸仁城般著名。可能是因為它位處於沖繩島西面，遠離著名遊客景點吧。
Katsuren Castle ruins dates back to the 14th century and is now a World Heritage Site. Entry to castle, which is free by the way, is via the this beautiful curved walkway, then along the castle walls to the top.
勝連城跡建於14世紀，已被聯合國認證為文化遺產。 進入城要經過這道以前有防禦功能的迂迴階梯， 然後再沿著城牆爬到頂部。
The view at the top of the castle is quite breathtaking. At one side is the Pacific Ocean, and on the other side is the view towards the Henza Island and the bridges I drove across earlier on.
And that’s how I spent a lazy day on Okinawa, doing not much, just as a holiday should be.
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