A Stroll On Ishigaki
Photo taken at Ishigaki
Ishigaki (石垣島) is a city in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. It includes Ishigaki Island and the disputed Senkaku Island (尖阁群岛,即釣魚島) territory。The uninhabited Senkaku Islnd is about 150 km away from Ishigaki, both PRC and ROC have challenged Japan’s sovereignty ever since 1972, with more intensity since 2012.
Ishigaki is situated at the western part of Pkinawa Honto （沖縄本島）and the second-largest island of the Yaeyama Island Group （八重山列島）.The city is the political, cultural, and economic centre of the Yaeyama Islands. New Ishigaki Airport serves the city.
Ishigaki Island, like the rest of Okinawa, is culturally influenced by both Japan and Taiwan due to its location. It is about 300 km off the north eastern coast of Taiwan(ROC).The shopkeepers there do not accept any Credit Cards or US dollars but they can accept Taiwan Currency. Luckily I bought some Taiwan money with me otherwise my wife and I could not get a delicious Japanese Lunch.
Ishigaki is a paradise for divers
A tsunami of record height hit Ishigaki Island in 1771. I was a bit worry on earthquake and tsunami during the visit. It did happen two weeks later after we came home.
Ishigaki is a great travel destination for lovers of tropical paradises. It features some magnificent beaches with crystal clear waters. It is ideal for surfing, kite-surfing, snorkelling and scuba diving.
As of December 2012, the city has an estimated population of 48,816 and a population density of 213 persons per km2. The total area is 229.00 km2
Ishigaki has a tropical rainforest climate with very warm summers and mild winters. Precipitation is abundant throughout the year; the rainiest month is August while the driest month is December.
Squirrel monkys at Ishigaki Yalma Village
Ishigaki has a very different cuisine than mainland Japan. Due to the relative warmth of the surrounding sea and due to American cultural influence, food of Ishigaki is more meat-centered than the rest of Japan. For example, Tonsoku (pigs feet) are quite popular. The usage of SPAM meat is also widespread and featured in many different dishes.
Ishigaki was originally founded in 1908 as Yaeyama Village, an amalgamation of the Ishigaki, Ōhama, and Miyara magiri . In 1914 it was renamed to Ishigaki Village, and grew to become Ishigaki Town in 1926. Ishigaki was elevated to city status on July 10, 1947.
Ishigaki produces sugarcane and pineapples. Tourism is also an important part of the economy of the city.
We then visited the following places:
It is located at the very west point of Ishigaki. There is only a lone lighthouse, Apart from this, there is nothing worth mentioning except visitors can walk up to the Observation platform to enjoy the magnificent view of Ishigaki.
Ishigaki Yalma Village.Visitors can experience the Yaeyama culture and life style.
2. Ishigaki Yalma Village
This is an old village which can date back to 100 years. Here, visitors can experience the Yaeyama culture and life style. There are live animals such as buffalo and monkeys roaming about. We were told that the village is an authentic replica of a Yaeyama Island style village life.
Max Value Supermarket
3. Max Value Supermarket
This is the largest supermarket in Ishigaki. Around the area also with 100 Yen Store, Book Store, Cosmetics Shops and other local shops. Here visitors can find different kinds of products including clothes, leather goods, groceries, skin care products, electrical goods, local Japanese food, and etc.