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Explore the Shimanami Kaido! Enjoy a luxury cruise on the Seto Inland Sea with luxurious gourmet food

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Setouchi is home to popular tourist spots such as Hiroshima, the Shimanami Kaido, and Naoshima. "Setouchi Shimanami Leading" offers luxury private cruise tours. This time, a MATCHA writer will tell you about his experience on board.

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Luxury cruise on the Seto Inland Sea

Surrounded by the Kansai region, Chugoku-Shikoku, and Kyushu, the Seto Inland Sea borders the peace city of Hiroshima, and in recent years has also been home to Naoshima and Teshima, popular sites for the ``Sacred Site of Contemporary Art: Setouchi International Art Festival,'' as well as the world's 7 largest national cycles. Routes such as the ``Shimanami Kaido'' have become a hot topic.

The Seto Inland Sea is characterized by over 700 islands that beautifully color the blue sea. Furthermore, because it is an inland sea with little influence from the open ocean, the waves are calm, and many ships have come and gone since ancient times.

“Ocean Point VII” used on this tour

Introducing the Shimanami Kaido by chartering a luxury cruise ship.

One of these is the Seto Inland Sea cruise run by ``Setouchi Shimanami Leading'', which is a luxury tour with a charter capacity of 11 people and is attractive because it allows you to enjoy gourmet food unique to this region.

Setouchi Shimanami Leading offers custom-made tours where you can freely choose your starting point, including Hiroshima Prefecture.

This time, MATCHA writer Mizzochi participated in a tour departing from Imabari Port in Ehime Prefecture and enjoyed the charm of the Seto Inland Sea! Let me introduce you to the situation.

*This article contains the writer's personal impressions. Please note that the content does not reflect the official views of "Setouchi Shimanami Reading."

Enjoy Setouchi's gourmet food at Imabari Port!

This tour is reserved from 12:00 to 17:00. First, we boarded the ship Ocean Point VII, which was docked at Imabari Port, and then enjoyed a course lunch on board.

The dishes mainly use ingredients from the area around the Seto Inland Sea.

The appetizer is caprese. The ladybug-shaped tomato comes from Etajima in Hiroshima Prefecture. The tasteful appetizers had us looking forward to the dishes that followed.

Next came seafood carpaccio. In addition to popular ingredients such as salmon and salmon roe, we also use octopus and sea bream, which are well-known as Setouchi specialties.

In addition, sumptuous dishes were served on the table, including poiled mackerel and Hiroshima brand Taoshita beef cheeks braised in red wine.

However, the thing that surprised me was the pumpkin soup. Even though it was processed into soup, it had a fresh, juicy taste, similar to when you eat raw vegetables or fish.

It was so delicious that I ate it like crazy and forgot to take a photo. It's a shame that I can't show it to everyone.

Mr. Omura (photo left) is the chef at Ocean Point VII. I usually work as the chef at OYSTER CAFE Etajima, which mainly serves oyster dishes.

He works in the fields himself almost every day. The pumpkin and other vegetables used in this dish were grown in his own garden. The vegetables were so fresh that you could feel the energy coming from them.

The pudding served for dessert also uses pumpkin grown in Chef Omura's own garden. It had a rich flavor, and even though it was a pudding, it had a strange taste that made you feel the freshness of the vegetables.

Green curry is known as the specialty dish of Ocean Point VII. This curry was invented by the ship's first chef, and is so popular with passengers that it has been passed down from generation to generation.

The mellow and rich green curry was exquisite, with just the right balance of fresh local vegetables and spices!

Luxurious onboard facilities. relax in the jacuzzi

After thoroughly enjoying a full-course meal, the ship departed around 2:00 p.m.

On board, everyone can relax and spend a luxurious time as they please.

This time, people from Tokyo, Osaka, and Shikoku participated in the tour. Even if it's your first time meeting someone, it's easy to have a conversation when you're on the same boat.

Participants on the tour who accompanied us

The ship we took this time, Ocean Point VII, has several luxury facilities. What I especially liked was the jacuzzi that you can soak in while looking out at the ocean.

Actually, the day before, I had ridden my bicycle along the Shimanami Kaido, so my legs were a little sore. However, as I soaked in the moderately warm water and looked out at the beautiful sea, my tired legs from cycling seemed to ease away.

Many ships sail on the Seto Inland Sea. There was also a small fishing boat like this one.

While enjoying the view of the calm sea, I suddenly felt time slowing down.

Spending time at sea, away from the hustle and bustle of everyday life, may be perfect for not only deepening relationships with friends and family, but also for looking within yourself.

Watch the ship operate up close

On the "Setouchi Shimanami Leading" tour, participants can change the course during the voyage according to their wishes.

This time, we toured the coast of Imabari City, and among the various large and small islands, there were islands with unique landscapes, and we had lively conversations with the participants.

During the cruise, the onboard staff will bring you drinks and tell you about local attractions.

Some of the staff are cheerful foreigners, and the atmosphere is friendly.

What was especially interesting was getting into the cockpit of the ship. In addition to watching the captain operate the boat, we were also allowed to touch the steering wheel and other parts.

It was such a fun experience that we felt like we were sailors ourselves.

As the sky gradually turned red, we returned to Imabari Port. I thought back on the fun day I had while watching the birds flying around the port.

For more information on charter cruises, click here to apply.

①4 Hours of Private Cruise on the Shimanami Kaido

For inquiries about the [Ocean Point] chartered cruise by "Setouchi Shimanami Reading", please contact the email address below.

If you are interested, please feel free to send us an email!

Written by

As a tourism business, we develop and sell official goods at the "jibacafe" in the Murakami Kaizoku Museum, as well as the Japan Heritage "Noshima Castle Ruins Landing & Tidal Cruise" and the "Cycle Tour" that is OK for inbound visitors, and provide services for attracting customers to government offices. . In addition, as a road service business, we operate a highway bus "Hiroshima-Imabari/Fukuyama-Imabari/Fukuyama-Matsuyama", operate a toll gate, and as a food and beverage business, Through the operation of the cafeteria on the Imabari Campus of Okayama University of Science, we aim to attract customers and contribute to the local community.

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