Time to slurp away on Okinawa's 'Soba Road'
Take a ride down Soba Road
There is a road in Motobu Town nicknamed “Soba Kaido,” or “Soba Road,” for good reason.
There are more than 70 Okinawa soba restaurants dotting a stretch of Izumi Kaido (Road), the main country road on Route 84 from Biimata in Nago to Motobu’s western fishing port.
As the surrounding area is home to numerous attractions – including the famed Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium at Ocean Expo Park and Japan’s earliest cherry blossom festival at Mount Yaedake – it offers an ideal opportunity to take in some local sights and get your Okinawa soba on, by stopping to sample the fare at some of the different noodle houses.
So why not take a drive on northeastern Okinawa, enjoy the islands beauty, visit a giant whale shark at the aquarium and savor some delicious Okinawa soba along the way.
More bowls of joy
Noodles near a base
Located at Sunabe Seawall in Chatan, this is a popular Okinawa soba restaurant among locals and tourists, alike. Divers, surfers or swimmers in wet swimwear can eat at outside tables. 2-99 Miyagi, Chatan-cho, Nakagami-gun
This popular military/DOD civilian haunt is just a two-minute walk from Kadena Air Base’s Gate 2. Their Okinawa soba broth is rich and tasty; and they also have takeout. For more information, visit: www.gabusokasoba.com
Near Camp Foster’s Gate 4, Gen offers a variety of local favorites. Their Moyashi soba comes highly recommended. For more information, visit: okinawahai.com/2011/05/gen-restaurant.html
Noodles up north
Try their home made jasmine-flavored noodles. 258 Maeganeku Onnason; 098-965-1017; open 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m., 5 p.m.-midnight, closed on Tuesday
Soba with pork rib so perfectly stewed it melts in your mouth. 2842-2 Matsuda Kunigamigun Ginozason; open daily, 11 a.m.- 9 p.m.
Okinawa soba and more with class, in an exquisite old Ryukyu-style house - an ideal location for that special occasion. 90 Nakayama, Nago; 098-053-0280; open daily, 11 a.m.-5 p.m., 6 p.m.- 10 p.m. For more information (in Japanese), visit: www.ufuya.com
Enjoy a “yasai” (vegetable) soba that has been cherished by locals for 55 years. 1-4-24 Shirahama Ishikawa Uruma; 098-964-2102; open Monday -Saturday, 11 a.m.-7:30 p.m.
Soba saturated in perfectly prepared “bonito”(dried fish flake) broth. 2-13-20 Yamazato Okinawa; 098-932-8840; open daily 11 a.m.-10 p.m.
Soba down south
Try their original Gozenhu soba. 4-19- 1 Nishizaki Itoman City; 098-840-8780; open daily 10 a.m.-8 p.m.
Firm noodles in a bath of crystal clear broth. 424-1 Mabuni Itoman City; 098-997-2668; open daily 10 a.m.-6 p.m.
The Yushi Dofu Soba with homemade tofu is quite popular. 95-4 Higashihama Yonabarucho; 098-944-0999; 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; closed on Tuesdays
Making soba from scratch