Category Archives: Japanese Culture

Video: Yajiyagama Cave Tour on Kumejima

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I’ve always been fascinated with caves. Growing up in  Arizona, I would camp in Sedona every year with my family. Our campground was nested along a river and there were caves along the cliffs which you could hike up into. Farther south there was also the Colossal Cave which I found impressive but unfortunately tame. There’s just something about exploring a natural cave that is interesting, provided it hasn’t been too softened with walkways and guide ropes. On Kumejima the

Video: Okinawan Desserts on Kumejima

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Okinawa boasts its own variety of sweets, many based on local flavors including fruits and sugar cane. On Kumejima, you can learn how to make some of the most popular Okianwan desserts at the Kumejima Island School tours, which were organized by the local tourism association. In the video below, locals demonstrate making two classics, Chinbin, a type of crepe, and Sata Andagi, or Okinawan Doughnuts. Both are delicious and participants, not only get the recipe and practice making them,

Video: Nishime Walkabout

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How different can two neighborhoods be on the same island? Both the Maja Tour and Nishime Tours are guided around local neighborhoods on the same island by different local guides, yet the experiences are quite different. Dissimilar geography and historic precedents have led to the areas being used in different ways. In the Ryukyu period the island was separated into two districts, which became villages in the Meiji era. The separation of the island into districts and even smaller neighborhoods

New Video: Kumejima’s Maja Scenic Tour

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Kume Island in Okinawa is home to many scenic and historic spots. For most visitors and locals, the main attractions such as Hateno Beach or events such as the yearly festival overshadow the much older local delights that can only be found when walking along with someone who truly knows the area. Recently, a new program is offering island experiences to delve into the historic, cultural, and natural side of Kumejima that the casual tourist might enjoy but find difficult

High School and Hawaiian Festivals

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Events abound in Japan’s Autumn, and although the weather still feels of summer, Fall is definitely in swing. This weekend saw a slew of events on Kume Island, dissimilar but also with underlying threads of culture to connect them. High School Festival Kume Island has only one high school for the entire island. It has a variety of classes for its students, but with such a wide range of classes it is difficult for them to fit every activity into

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