Miyajima Continued

After a quick exploratory walk around the town, we were able to find a small grocery store where we bought breakfast. We found a small shrine nearby that miraculously didn't have any deer wandering about and we ate our breakfast without being harassed.

Theo, attracting a few weird looks while finishing his breakfast

The tide was low, so after breakfast we headed over to the Itsukushima Shrine to take a closer look at the huge torii gate. There were coins placed as an offering into all of the small tidal pools surrounding the torii and imbedded into the base of the pillars. Theo was very interested in all of the little invertebrates that were in the tidal pools. There were crabs of all sizes, hermit crabs, snails, and I am sure lots of other creatures crawling around.

Dustin, the kids, and I beneath the torii at low tide

Offering money imbedded amongst the barnacles on the torii

Theo exploring the tidal flats

Karlee and William with the torii

Mid afternoon as the tide came in

After we had our fill of gawking at the shrine and torii, we found a much less crowded beach and let Theo swim and play the beach. It was a very sunny day so our skin could only handle a couple of hours on the beach before needing to seek shade.

Theo enjoyed making all sorts of jewelry out of seaweed

He also spent a good hour pretending that he was riding around on a jet ski

Theo made a birthday cake out of bits and pieces he found on the beach. Sand cake with seaweed frosting, snails, shells, glass and pine cone decorations and bamboo candles. Here he is blowing out the candles after singing "Happy Birthday" to himself.

We spent the rest of the day wandering the shopping streets and trying out various regional foods. Some local specialties that we nibbled on were salt water eel (anago) cakes, oysters, and deep fried momiji manju. Momiji manju is a specialty in Hiroshima prefecture and is a maple leaf shaped little cake filled with sweet red bean, custard, cream cheese, sweet green tea paste, chocolate, or a lot of other fillings. There were quite a few shops in Miyajima that made their manju fresh with an awesome machine. Some places even sold them battered and deep fried on a stick. It was heavenly.

The momiji manju machine in  action

Taunting William with the sweet goodness of custard filled, deep fried momiji manju

The torii at sunset
We had really wanted to hike the mountain on the island, which has bands of wild monkeys living on it, but since we decided to not spend one more sleepless night on the island, we didn't have time. We headed back to the mainland on the last ferry and had a long and tiring train ride back to Fukuyama.

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