May 6, 2019
Gallery - Etajima
Hiroshima holds a place in my heart because of its history. And now, after my visit to my husband's family, I have other reasons to love the place even more. I was thrilled to know that we were going to spend the Golden Week in Hiroshima. I could not not wait to finally see the place that I have only been reading about.
The family I was visiting lives in Etajima-shi which is located on the island of Hiroshima Bay in Southwestern Hiroshima. It can be accessible through ferry boats (Koyo Port) and by land (longer trip). This part of the island is where the mountains and the sea meet. It is like a rendezvous of land and water so it offers a variety of activities for people who love the calmness of the ocean and others who enjoy the thrill of heights.
Living in a place far from the ocean, a walk in the beach is something that I always long for and enjoy doing whenever I get the chance. Feeling the sand around my toes and hearing the waves crash are a source of solace. Together with my in-laws, we drove to the nearest seaside. Surprisingly, they do not only offer a walk on the seashore but also have canoes for rent and an onsen with a comfortable view of the sea. Although we were not able to try their hot spring and canoes, we did enjoy sharing stories while walking on the beach.
As we were enjoying the peaceful ocean, the other half of my family decided to trek one of the six mountains on the island, Furutakayama. According to them, it took 3 good hours to reach the top and upon reaching the top, they had a spectacular view of the Etajima Bay. Certainly, I cannot express in mere words how they felt when they reached the summit. But, I can only recall what my sister-in-law told me, "It's really worth it."
The island is teeming with natural food resources from the mountains and quality seafood from the ocean. Hunting and fishing are not only hobbies for my family living on the island, but has also become a source of food. Hats off to them.
Etajima is a city in a modern and technological country, so one may assume life in this island is all about convenience. For me, it is still quite provincial and maybe at times, far more inconvenient compared to many cities in Japan. Nevertheless, the beauty and purity of the island is incomparable. It captures the wonder of a traditional Japanese community in the heart of modern Hiroshima society.
A mother, wife, and an educator. I am a Filipino married to a Filipino Japanese descendant. My family and I often travel and stay in the country when needed. I am currently a resident of Minokamo, Gifu Prefecture. I have fallen in love with the country, the people, and its culture. I enjoy writing and sharing about expat life in Japan.