One night, Two days
From 16000 JPY
May ~ Oct
2 - 8 persons
Spend two days and one night as one of the islanders in the beautiful Urato Islands in Matsushima Bay!
Throw yourself into island life, soaking up the stunning scenery, savouring local flavours from blessings of the ocean and fields, and getting your hands dirty helping out on the farm! With few young people left on the islands to carry out work of local agricultural and fisheries industries, make a difference through your visit by offering your time and physical help to the local farmers. Be rewarded with warm hospitality, new experiences and new connections with the locals, who will make you feel right at home!
Meet your guide at passenger terminal ‘Marine Gate Shiogama’.
Jump aboard the Urato Islands Ferry bound for Hojima.
Along the way, the ferry will stop at Katsurashima Island, Nonoshima Island, Ishihama Wharf and Sabusawa Island. Take in views of the local aquaculture – oysters, nori and wakame – as you pass through Matsushima Bay, and enjoy the scenes of island life as you watch locals and visitors ‘hop’ between the islands.
Arrive at Sabusawa island, where your guide, Togawa-san, will be waiting for you with a brilliant white smile beaming from his sun-tanned face!
Spend the morning exploring the island with Togawa-san, discovering hidden spots that only a local would know as you learn about the fascinating history and culture of the Urato Islands.
Drop-by Togawa-san’s field to pick some fresh veggies to eat with lunch!
Return to ‘Togawa-ya’, the cosy minshuku (guesthouse) run by Togawa-san and his wife, Eiko-san. Tuck-in to a delcious meal featuring fresh ingredients from the land and sea of Urato Islands. Be blown away by the generous hospitality as Eiko-san tells you it’s ‘nothing much’ !
Fuelled-up on island blessings, it’s time to show your gratitude and get to work on the farm! There are few young hands on the islands to support the local agricultural and fisheries industries. Use your visit to make a difference by providing support to the Togawa’s with your time and your own two hands.
After all that hard work, it’s time to settle down for the evening and enjoy the quiet of island life. Embrace the serenity of ‘island time’ and watch the sun go down over Matsushima Bay.
Spend the evening at your ‘second home’, chatting with the Togawa’s over some more ‘island-meshi’ and a glass of ‘Sabusawa’ sake, made from Togawa-san’s rice.
Awaken to another beautiful day on the islands! Enjoy some ‘island time’ before breakfast and saying goodbye to the Togawas.
Enjoy another local experience by calling for a ‘tosen’, one of the free shuttle-ferries that operates between Sabusawa and neighbouring Nonoshima-island.
Waiting for you on the other side will be Endo-san, your next island guide! Endo-san was born and raised on Nonoshima, and knows every in and out of the island. Learn directly from him about the history, culture and lifestyle of Nonoshima, as you walk towards ‘Gakkohama’ Beach.
Having experienced the unique scenery of Urato from the land, next its time to explore on the water! Jump aboard one of Endo-san’s sea-kayaks and spend an hour or so paddling on the clear blue water of Matsushima Bay, passing by oyster farms, fishing boats and tiny islands.
Back on the land, find a scenic spot to enjoy your lunch – a delicious ‘obento’ style lunchbox full of more delicious local dishes made with ingredients produced in the very waters you were exploring only moments ago!
‘Island time’ flies by, and before you know it you’ll hear the approach of the Urato Island Ferry heading back to the mainland.
Say goodbye to the islands – but not for long. Your new friends will be waiting to welcome you ‘home’ to Urato Islands soon!