To Give is to Receive
Ojika’s culture is based on the concept of Omoiyari (おもいやり in Japanese), which emphasizes the importance of being considerate of others. Here everyone is a part of a close community, where everyday life is full of thoughtful acts of kindness. The old custom of bartering- an act of exchanging something you have an abundance of for something you need, is very much alive here.
A fisherman will gift his neighbor farmer with a fish he caught. The next morning he will find freshly harvested rice and vegetables left at his door. It is said that generosity leads to greater joy and happiness and people of Ojika island are living proof of this.
The Bounty of the Sea
Surrounded by bountiful sea from every direction, Ojika Island is a treasure trove of marine delicacies. That is why some visitors might feel frustrated with a lack of shops selling fish here.
The reason for this is simply that locals have no need for them, being able to catch their own dinner any time they want, and if not, a kind neighbor or a friend will always have some fish to spare.
The fishing port of Ojika Island is as lively as ever, however, with fresh sea goodness being brought in here every morning by hard-working fishermen. It then gets exported to Nagasaki, Osaka, Kyoto, and Tokyo areas on the mainland Japan. Visit here early morning to witness the fresh array of seafood of every shape and color being unloaded from the nets.
The Bounty of the Soil
Experience the change of season on Ojika Island through its seasonal harvest. Here you will see vegetables growing in every conceivable location. The green leaves of all shapes and sizes will make you wonder what kind of vegetable is hiding inside the red volcanic soil beneath. Local shops are lined up with local produce, straight from the fields. However, it’s not only the farmers who grow vegetables. The kitchen garden is an important part of every household’s daily diet with locals growing their own dinner in the backyard. Everyone makes sure to grow more than one can consume so that they can share with friends and neighbors: a great way to cultivate friendships.