Motobu has more than Expo Park and Aquarium
Motobu Town is located in the northern part of Okinawa, Kunigami District. The town has a total area of 54.30 square kilometers. Several islands can be accessed from Motobu such as Sesoko, by crossing a bridge, Minna Island and Ie Island by ferry. Sesoko and Minna islands belong to the town.
Motobu Port was prosperous in the past when it was the hub connecting to Ie, Izena and Iheya Islands. Now, a new port has been built away from the downtown area, and departures to Izena and Iheya Island are now from Unten Port in Nakijin Village, leaving the town a bit dreary. Still, Motobu is mostly known for the Ocean Expo Park which is also the site of the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, that attracts tons of tourists not only from in and out of Japan, but is also unconditionally popular within Okinawans.
Apart from the well-known Expo Park, Motobu Town has some interesting history that might not be widely known. Motobu has many restaurants that specialize in
the traditional Okinawan cuisine enjoyed and loved by many; Okinawa soba. Plus, adding restaurants that are not specialized but provide the dish, it comes up to a total of some 70 restaurants. So, no wonder Highway 84 in Izumi was named “The Soba Highway”. On October 17th, 2010 Motobu declared itself to be the town of soba. It might be worthwhile to go for a drive along Highway 84 to sample some of Okinawa’s tastiest soba.
Also made in the beautiful nature of Motobu is acerola; a fruit that’s acid red cherry-like and very rich in
vitamin C. Motobu makes acerola not only for eating, but cosmetic products made from the fruit may also be worth trying.
For those who enjoy seafood, you might want to try the bonito which is fished out of the Toguchi Port and is in season, meaning they are at their prime taste.
Motobu has much more to offer, including many tourist sites, accommodations, local products, marine leisure, restaurants and tons of cafes in its beautiful nature to enjoy.
Yoneha Ajisai Park was chosen the 6th best hydrangea garden from the western part of Japan. It all began when 91-year-old Ms. Uto Yohena started planting them when she was in her 60s. Some 30 years later, there are now 8,000 stubs and a carpet of 250,000 beautiful blooming flowers in 1,000 square meters of land. (3,000 tsubo). Blooming season is normally from the end of May to mid June. Admission for adults ¥300, children ¥100. Location http://goo.gl/maps/Le5X0
Okinawa Expo Park/Chura Umi Aquarium
Okinawa Expo park is a state-run park established in August 1976 in recognition of the Okinawa international marine exposition. In the park is the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, complete with several dolphin shows. It is one of Okinawa’s most popular places to visit. The Churaumi Aquarium has a large variety of fish, including the 8.5-meter whale shark and a manta ray with the world’s record for longevity in captivity. Location http://goo.gl/maps/cF5PT