I am an officer of the Kyushu University Foreign Students Association (KUFSA), and last year I helped organize a field trip for 90 international students and their families. This is an article I wrote for the KUFSA newsletter last year. I’m posting it here now, because summer is almost here again, so I remembered. Harhar.
KUFSA’s Itoshima trip, perfect for the summer heat
Itoshima is the location of Kyudai’s newest campus. Just this year (2010), Maebaru, Nijo and Shima cities were merged to become Itoshima City. It is also home to a lot of interesting and beautiful places.
One sunny day last August 2010, KUFSA and the Kyushu University International Student Support Center organized a day trip around Itoshima for Kyudai foreign students and their families. The trip started early in the morning, when the participants were picked up at the Hakozaki and Ito Campuses. Everyone was entertained with games and prizes while they were inside the buses. The first spot that we visited was Fureai no Sato, a popular summer spot because of the cool temperature provided by Shiraito Falls. After a short but uphill walk under the sun, we reached Fureai no Sato where we can see the nice view of Itoshima and of course, the majestic 24-m high waterfalls. We all enjoyed lunch as the cool water from the waterfalls provided great relief from the summer heat. We also tried Japanese food sold in the village, such as the somen nagashi (noodles that were made to slide down bamboo poles using the cool water from the falls, and then dipped in soy sauce, spring onions and wasabi), kakigouri (shaved ice with sweet colored syrup), and yakinuku (grilled meat) and grilled fresh fish (caught from the falls).
After lunch, we visited Anego beach, which is considered as one of the cleanest beaches in Fukuoka. The place is also called the “crying beach” because of the unique sound that the sand produces when people walk on the beach. KUFSA organized several games in which the students actively participated despite the scorching heat of the sun. The contestants had to run with wet towels and pass it over their heads, and also got to experience pouring ocha into cups using their mouths. Everyone who participated enjoyed the games, and the winners were given prizes. After the games, we had a great time taking pictures of the beautiful scenery and swimming at the beach. The water was really clean and very cool, and is jellyfish-free unlike other beaches around Fukuoka.
The last destination that we went to was Ito Sai Sai, which is said to be the second largest farmer’s market in Japan. Most of the products sold here came from Itoshima farms. We looked at a large variety of fresh fruits, vegetables, flowers, and processed food. Some also tried the soft ice cream and the yoghurt milk produced by Itoshima farmers. There were also fine furniture and shoes being sold at cheap prices. After shopping, everybody was ready to go home so we were taken back to Ito Campus and then Hakozaki Campus. The trip was really enjoyable, a perfect summer getaway for most of the students. It was a nice, sunny day spent well with friends and family.
*We would like to acknowledge the Kyushu University International Student Support Center for helping us organize this trip and for providing the buses used in the activity. Special thanks also go out to Itoshima government officials for subsidizing the somen nagashi for participants of the trip.