Summer festival offers “sabani” sailboat rides

Sailing a traditional wooden Okinawan “sabani” is not your everyday boating experience.

Rides aboard “sabani”, a traditional Okinawan fishing sailboat are a highlight of this weekend’s summer festival at Kanna Thalasso Okinawa.

The Saturday & Sunday festival runs 11 a.m. ~ 8 p.m. at Kanna Thalasso, 1817 Kanna, Ginoza Village.  The Sabani rides take place 11 a.m. ~ 4 p.m. Admission is ¥2,000 for adults and ¥1,000 for children. The “Sabani” sailboat experience is one attraction in the summer festival.

“Sabani” is a traditional Okinawan sailboat that were used by

Participants train the proper use of “ake” or oar.

local fishermen in the past. There are three ways to maneuver the sabani: there is the oar called “Ake”, a square sail, and an engine. The use of engine power is a relatively recent addition to the boats. This time, the participants can ride a “sabani” using a sail and an oar. There is a maximum capacity of eight sailing partners at a time. An instructor gives a lecture and guides everyone how to carefully paddle with the oar, control the sail and other aspects of a sabani ride. There will be six sabani sailings each hour, starting from 11:00

Balancing the narrow sabani is a feat in itself.

a.m. and participants must register at the counter of “Kanna Thalasso.”

Although the “Sabani” rides are until 4 p.m., the rest of the festival continues until 8 p.m.. Concerts with dance and music take place both days on a special stage. In addition, visitors can taste the Ginoza hamburger, yakitori, and other local delicacies, or relax in the beer garden. There’s also a relaxation corner featuring hair, body art, nail salon, and face massage. The vegetable market sells fresh vegetables at cheap prices, and the handicraft market will sell handmade goods such as wooden sanshins, accessories, and aroma goods.

10:47 18 Jul , 2024