Release | Takako Chiba
We went to “Teuri Sea Urchin Festival” in Teuri Island!
Hokkaido Likers team went to Teuri island to taste the best sea urchin in Japan which the town hall feel proud of. The sea urchin was insanely delicious; it made us eat forever!
Teuri Island was bright and sunny! It was the perfect day for Sea Urchin FestivalOn July 22 and 23 in 2017, the best food in Japan “Teuri Sea Urchin Festival” was held in Teuri Island. There was also fireworks at night of July 22 so tourists who stayed in Teuri Island enjoyed Sea Urchin Festival during the day and fireworks festival at night.
You should take either speed boat “Sunliner 2” or ferry “Ororon 2” operated by Haboro Enkai Ferry to reach Teuri Island from Haboro Town. Hokkaido Likers team went to Teuri Island on July 23. We left Haboro Port and took the speed ferry to Teuri Island in the morning.
The weather was not good from few days before the festival, and it was said to be cloudy or rainy in the weekly forecast, but it was no problem! There was no wind, and the ocean was very quiet. The blue sky and ocean in Teuri were the typical summery picture of islands in Hokkaido.
The festival site was right in next to the portTeuri Island is a small island with 12 kilometers circumference and 5.50 square kilometers size.
We did not have to walk all the way to the festival site; the site was in front of the port where we get off the ferry. We could notice the banner of “Sea Urchin Festival” from the deck. I felt as if it was saying “welcome” to us and I was already excited on the ferry.
▲The site of Sea Urchin Festival was right next to the ferry terminal.
According to Mr. Togashi in Haboro Town, they have about 1,000 visitors in two days. The population of Teuri Island is 317 people. (As of March 2017) The best food in Japan “Teuri Sea Urchin Festival” gets a triple number of visitors compared to the population in just two days.
▲From the left: the manager of Kita-Rumoi Fire-Fighting Headquarters Teuri Office Miyako Ota, Haboro Town Hall Business, and Tourism Department Jun Togashi, and the manager of Haboro Town Hall Teuri Office Tetsuya Tsuruga.
The whole island involves in this event, so I thought tourists rush to sea urchin and eager to eat delicious sea urchin, but they were pretty slow and relaxed. I felt like the time started passing slowly as soon as I got to the island.
Enjoy raw and grilled sea urchins! Small 100 yen, medium 200 yen, large 300 yenWell, let us join Sea Urchin Festival, too! There were three kinds of sea urchin: small 100 yen, medium 200 yen, large 300 yen. We could also buy scallop, shrimp, squid, etc.
▲The staffs who are selling sea urchin, shrimp, etc. The whole people in the island such as teachers welcome tourists.
▲I was looking for Murasaki-Uni. They are still alive!
▲The sea urchins, scallops, shrimps, scallops that Hokkaido Likers team bought.
After buying sea urchins, bring them to the staffs who open the shell. They will process sea urchins for sashimi and grilling.
Get your charcoal grill and let’s cook them!
▲Just put sea urchins, scallops, shrimps on the table!
While you wait for those to be cooked, let’s try the sashimi. The first one did not go well (I was too excited!), but as eating another one and more, you will get skilled to scoop sea urchin.
▲Enjoy sea urchin from the shell!
▲As I was concentrating on sashimi, scallop become good!
Grilled sea urchin got cooked, so we asked staff to break the shell.
▲This is grilled sea urchin! Thick sweetness was added to wet and smooth texture it had in sashimi!
You should visit Teuri Island, which is the producer of sea urchins, to enjoy sea urchins in 100 yen to 300 yen. One person could finish five or six pieces easily. We often say that people get so quiet when they eat crabs. Sea urchin was the same. We want to scoop clearly, not leaving a bit, so we concentrate on eating and become quiet.
I saw lots of people but did not notice noises. Maybe, it was because everyone was concentrating too much!
▲Grilled sea urchin and Sapporo Beer Kuro Label. The combination of these two makes us eat and drink forever!
At the site, we found people from different parts of Hokkaido who visited Teuri Island for the festival: neighborhood along the Sea of Japan such as Haboro Town, Tomamae Town, Rumoi City and other parts such as Asahikawa, Numata Town, Sapporo, etc.
▲The family who came from Sapporo as a day trip.
Sea Urchin Festival finishes at 3:00 PM. I looked for souvenirs and walked around the port to rest my stomach which got full with sea urchin until speed ferry to Haboro leaves.
Teuri Island in summer has lots of attractions so if you can, stay a night in the island and participate in Sea Urchin Festival as you enjoy the nature of Teuri. However, I realized taking a day trip to Teuri Island and staying in Haboro or Rumoi is also nice, too.
There are no such festivals let people enjoy so much sea urchin at such a low price. The festival in 2017 ended already, but I thought this event is worth preparing for the next year from now.
Well, should I participate in the festival in next year, again?
Related Links- Haboro Town
- Haboro Sightseeing Association
Hokkaido Likers writer Takako Chiba
Photo: Tomoya Suwa
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