Miyajima Island, in addition to being the home of the iconic “floating” O-torii gate and the source of momiji manju, is home to the world’s largest rice paddle. I would never have known this if our tour hadn’t included a stop there, but I am really glad it did! We spent two nights on Miyajima island, climbed to the top of Mt. Misen, and avoided the ubiquitous deer who love to beg for food. While we were there, there was a typhoon hitting parts of Japan and the island experienced some strong winds and a little light rain. The winds prompted the operators to close the ferry to Hiroshima and the ropeway up the mountain, and most of the restaurants and shops were closed as well. This was nice, because there weren’t crowds of people and it was quiet and pleasant, but on the other hand there was not a lot of choice for what to have for lunch. The two places open for lunch both served Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki, so that was it.
Map of the side of the island that faces the mainland.
Keiko walked out at low tide to get a close-up view. Can you spot her?
At high tide, it does look sortof like it is floating.
Momiji manju are cakes (manju) filled with yummy filling and shaped like maple leaves (momiji). But one shop sells them with Hello Kitty on them.
This rice paddle is over 7.7 meters long (over 25 feet) and is made from a tree over 200 years old. And no, I've never been to the largest ball of twine.
The view from Mt. Misen. You can just barely see the ferry dock at the lower right.
A deer begs one of our tourmates for some of his ice-cream sandwich. The deer are not above chewing clothing and snatching pocketbooks.
Hiroshima-style okonomiyaki include pancake, cabbage, noodles, and omelet (invisible on the bottom.) There may be meat inside, too.
The finished okonomiyaki has been flipped so the omelet is on top. I got mine with oysters, another specialty of Miyajima. It was so big though, I could not eat it all.