"" Writer's Wanderings: Kabira Bay, Ishigaki, Japan

Friday, November 15, 2019

Kabira Bay, Ishigaki, Japan

Kabira Bay is located on the north coast of Ishigaki Island. The bay is protected by a small island that blocks the bay from the open ocean. It is a place where they culture pearls and therefore there is no swimming allowed in the water. They do however allow for glass bottom boats.

After our soba noodle breakfast, we drove a little ways up the road to where we could park to arrange our glass bottom boat trip. This end of the little town was a bit more touristy with souvenir shops and small food booths. The entrance to the parking lot was automated. We had to sit and wait a couple of minutes for a car to exit so that it would let us in to park. It must keep count of the number of cars so that there is a parking space available before you can enter.

After we purchased our boat tickets, we went down on the beach for a bit to explore. There were about a half dozen different sized boats pulled up to shore--several different operators. We didn't have to wait long and we were invited to board one of the smaller boats. Now I've been on several glass bottom boat trips and usually they are a little disappointing since we are divers and know what the marine life looks like when we dive. This was a whole different experience.

Blue Staghorn Coral
The bottom of the boat was very clear and you could distinctly see the fish and coral which were spectacular. Our very skilled boat operator took us over several different types of coral and seaweed. All of it was very colorful. I was amazed and delighted. We spent about a half hour covering what seemed like a large area of the bay but I'm sure there was a big section we never covered where the pearls are grown.

Giant clams
Besides the colorful seaweed and corals, I was amazed at the large field of giant clams we passed over. They weren't as large as the ones we've seen in Papua New Guinea while diving but they were fascinating. So many.

After our boat ride, we walked around the area a bit and of course the kids spied a Blue Seal ice cream stand. While everyone got dips of their favorites, I went into the cafe and got a coffee to go. The girl at the counter spoke very good English. She said she had worked in a resort for a time and so learned English very well.

We took our time driving back to our beach house. It was threatening rain again but we passed by some really pretty areas and interesting hotel/resort complexes, one of which we would return to for beach time.

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