Proper Zamami Post

Satellite image of Zamami courtesy of Google Maps
Zamami Island, where I've been staying with Dave Sensei the last week, is a special place. I felt that my previous Zamami post didn't really do it justice, so I've worked up a proper one so you can hopefully share in some of its specialness.

Zamami, part of the Kerama archipelago, is some 40km* from Okinawa, although it feels much farther*. Its 6.5 square miles of area are basically covered by 15 or so miles of paved roads, which can easily be explored by bicycle* in one day. Of the 600 inhabitants of the island, 500 live in the main village, a perfectly sized city, at least for some good down time. (Here's a shot of Dave walking to school on Main Street*.) Big enough for a few restaurants but small enough that you start to recognize the same people around town, it has served as a great counterpoint to Taipei and some of the other cities of Taiwan for me.

Despite the small size of things, there is plenty to explore. (With exploration, of course, comes geocaching.) Around the island on tops of various bluffs and hills, there are 5 observatories for checking out the views and trying to spot whales. Beaches and snorkeling are popular (when it isn't raining, of course) which I hope to get some time in for later this week. But my favorite activity so far is just soaking in the wonderful small town vibe. Having an in with the community to introduce me around and get us invitiations to community-type events has only helped that vibe.

People have been asking me, "How's Japan?" I'm somewhat unable to respond. I know practically nothing of cultural/societal Japan is represented here on this island. But time for Japan culture and society will come soon enough. For now, I'm enjoying Zamami.
Monday March 9 2009File under: travel, Japan

Toggle Comments (4)comment?
on Mon 09th Mar, 2009 08:55 pm PDT Mom said:
Any of those 6-ft long I-G-B-Y-A-W-Y-C-A-S-Y snakes there?
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on Tue 10th Mar, 2009 08:00 pm PDT Joe said:
was that an ipod in that geocache??that place looks awesome, looks like it has a great vibe, beautiful.
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on Wed 11th Mar, 2009 01:49 am PDT Juline said:
Geocaching! Have you been doing it throughout the trip? What kind of items are in a Japanese geocache?
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on Thu 12th Mar, 2009 06:39 am PDT Dave's Dad said:
Wren i am glad you are keeping us informed of your stay on Zamami as it seems your host doesn't seem to have time! Have a great time.
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