Okinawa: Manzamo

 Another part of our delightful bus tour! I actually really wanted to see this, but others... Not so much. (Them: So what is it again? Me: It's a rock. A cliff. Shaped like an elephant. Them: ...And?) Well, sometimes that's enough! Geez! I mean, look at it!

Oh, the sea's really pretty too.

I have to say that while the view was AMAZING, it wasn't the kind of place that we could freely explore. I've heard something about tourists not being allowed on the cliff itself, but I can't specifically remember any signs. There was however, something like a designated walk-way. Our visit was fairly hit and run. There are some stalls set up in the parking lot; there is the cliff, which you can take pictures of; and you can walk around and take pictures of a bit more things. And then you go. No climbing, no hunting for cool never before seen areas... Maybe you could if you were not on a timed bus tour. It looks like a beautiful place for a nice picnic. Or a game of tag!

Provided you don't fall down one of these, of course.

The name, Manzamo, doesn't mean "This Cliff Totally Looks Like an Elephant, Check It Out", unfortunately. Apparently, in the late 18th century the Ryukyuan king Sho Kei visited the area, saw its grassy expanses, and said, "Man, 10,000 of my peeps could chill here!" only probably in much frillier language, as kings so often speak. So the name means something like "place where 10,000 men can sit".

King Sho Kei: I'm not even exaggerating, there's like, so much space!

Why would a king latch onto this comparatively mundane aspect in the face of the cliff's obvious elephant likeness? Actually it may not have been so obvious in the late 18th century. The cliff is made of limestone, which is very easily eroded away. All the more reason for you to stop by, especially if you have a leisurely picnic planned; it may be not so amazingly elephant-like for long. I suppose the area may not even be as big as it was when King Sho Kei first saw it. Nevertheless, it still is a beautiful place to see.



I was wondering about this picture below... What's the rope for?

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