Our Last Day in Heda
On our last day in the Heda region of Izu we wanted to try out the nearby beach at Ida Port. Over a yummy breakfast on the terrace at our guesthouse Brian the friendly host had recommended it as the best place for snorkelling in the Izu region.
The drive down to the small port at Ida gave us stunning views over the rice fields. The light green of the ripening rice contrasted with the mountains beyond and the sea in the distance. The road wound round the steep sides of the valley and gave us views down onto the farms below. I love the lush colours of the rice fields.
Reaching the Ida port we found that the beach was more of a concrete jetty behind the sea defences and Jerome was at first disappointed after the dinosaurs the day before. Initially refusing to get changed and go in the sea. The concrete was brutally grey and stripped by red steps down to the waters edge. Alongside were huge rocks and no sand in sight.
A Concrete Beach
We tried to persuade Jerome into the water but gave up and settled back on our towels to watch the people and admire the stunning scenery. The mountains towards the point dropped in sheer rocks into the calm sea. The day was hazy but warm and humid.There were some other families on the concrete “beach” all with the usual maximum of equipment – one man even had a large water canister and was showering his son down. It is just amazing how much stuff the Japanese carry to the beach each day! We felt under equipped with just a ground sheet towels and swimming goggles.
As Jerome did not want to swim we started to explore. At the back we found an amazing mural of a crab on sea wall. The area is famous for spider crabs, although I think they live too far out and deep to have a chance to see one snorkelling.
Amazing Snorkelling on Heda Beach
Finally we managed to get Jerome to change and try the sea. Once in we could not get him out. The water was super clear and the rocks meant there were far more fish than on the sandy beaches and coves.
A little way off shore were two pontoons and underneath there were swarms of stripy fish in a range of colours. Jerome and Chris took the underwater camera and managed to snap some pictures of the shoals swimming around…and a few of each other too. We realised how hard it is to get good pictures in the sea with all the movement and erratic light. Once we got Jerome in the water it was almost impossible to get him out, finally and tired out he emerged from a long swim and snorkel for some well earned snacks.
After a bite to eat and a drink Jerome wandered off along the concrete beach to see what some of the other children were up to. He watched as one family caught crabs and shrimps in the rock pools between the boulders, and eyed another man fishing from the sea wall. However, it was not long before he was back in the water snorkelling again and playing ball.
Drive along the Coast to Osezaki
Our drive back after the beach took us along the coast through more of the rural area past all the rice fields and up into the coastal mountains. The blend of sea and land could not be better captured than the buoys used as bird scarers on the farms.
We explored up the coast a bit towards Osezaki and spotted an amazing little café perched high above the sea in the trees. The café served wonderful coffee and cake and the café area looked like it had been build from reclaimed driftwood and recycled items. We were charmed by its almost mystic location.
Stop at Cafe 峠の茶屋 アザセボラ
We explored up the coast a bit towards Osezaki and spotted an amazing little café perched high above the sea in the trees. Café 峠の茶屋 アザセボラserved wonderful coffee and cake and the café area looked like it had been build from reclaimed driftwood and recycled items. We were charmed by its almost mystic location.
Gazing at Mount Fuji
Sitting on the terrace we could just about make out Mount Fuji in through the haze – which was our next destination. Our plan was to drive up the last of the peninsular and over the mountains to Fuji with the hope of getting a clear day to climb it in the following days.