It’s not quite the same as a TransAmerica or Flying J truck stop and rest area in the U.S., but Michi-no Eki Itoman bears the Okinawa footprint of a rest area, supermarket, an ice cream stand, tempura vegetables and fish, and even souvenirs.
Itoman City, where Michi-no Eki Itoman located, is in the far south of Okinawa island, twelve
kilometers from Naha airport by car. Among the markets of urban area in Itoman, well known as a fishing village, Okinawan mothers’ powerful voice is flying about. Visitors to Itoman like the chances to learn about the battle of Okinawa and peace at such destinations as Peace Memorial Park and Himeyuri Peace Museum. Itoman City has a great number of sightseeing spots, so It is not a waste noticing Michi-no Eki Itoman when you roam the area.
Michi-no Eki Itoman is 20 minutes from the airport by car. It was opened in September 2009 as the southernmost Michi-no Eki in Japan. Its total site area is the largest in Okinawa. There are four main facilities on its 10,000-tsubo property, –one tsubo is 3.3 square meters– which are the farm produce market, seafood market, local product store and a restaurant.
“Umanchu Ichiba” Direct market of agricultural products
Umanchu Ichiba is a direct marketing store of farm products by Itoman City farmers, which attracts more than 2,000 people every day. From not only the local area but also Naha and Ginowan City, customers visit to seek fresh vegetables. There are 1,200 farmer members supplying 400 different produce items. It is a major farm stand among farmer-operated markets in Okinawa. The farmers carry their greens into the facility from 5:30 every morning. Producers’ names are always written on packages of vegetables, evidence which gives proof that farmers grow products proudly.
“Cabbages and carrots are excellent this season.” says Mr. Urasaki, the store manager. Mineral and calcium are significant for plant growth, and Itoman City has land that contains those elements. Shimajiri Maaji, soil that is suitable for growing cabbages is distributed, so the harvested cabbages in the region are sweet and don’t smell green. In addition, Chura Carrots, are at the peak. Chura Carrots