Ana Intercontinental Manza Beach is on pretty much everyone’s radar because of the beautiful beach and the fun obstacle course that they offer during the summer season. It is also a well known 4 Star resort, that is located in the beautiful area of Onna. But, did you know that they offer many different family-friendly activities?
Recently my family and I got the opportunity to spend the day experiencing all of the different activities offered. It was the perfect day with great weather and a great experience. We were so excited to take the kids and let them explore the grounds and see what was offered.
Lunch with a View at Salvatore Cuomo & Bar
We started the visit by eating lunch at the Salvatore Cuomo & Bar. The restaurant is located in Beach Zone of the resort and can be accessed by walking or taking the free shuttle that runs throughout the day. This is a seasonal restaurant offering wood fired pizza and pasta, featuring local Okinawa produce and is open for both lunch and dinner. Their lunch menu is a set menu, with two options the Capri or the Napoli. Both come with drink, soup or salad, choice of pizza or pasta and unlimited visits to the dessert bar. The Napoli is the choice for the hungrier visitor, as it also includes an additional course of a variety of meat or the catch of the day. The kid’s lunch was large enough for our two to share and it included a drink, soup, salad, spaghetti, a large hamburger paddy and access to the desert bar. We were able to sit outside since it was a cooler day, but there was plenty of shade offered for the hotter days. It was a wonderful lunch and we highly recommend the restaurant!
A Ride Aboard the Submarine Jr. II
Next up we met Hiroyuki-San, the Director of Leisure Activity at Ana Intercontinental, down at the docks and he told us all about the 35th Anniversary and the celebration of Team Chura Sango (Team Beautiful Coral). This project was formed back in 2004, and Ana Intercontinental is proud to be a part of the team along with other companies from inside and outside of Okinawa. “Sango” is coral in Japanese and the number thirty-five is “Sanjūgo”, so it is sort of a play on words and they are excited to be promoting the anniversary along with the coral restoration project. The Submarine Jr. II is a big part of this because it is a ride you can take to see the coral farm where they are harvesting and planting new coral. Four times a year, typically in spring and autumn, different types of coral is harvested and planted in the Manza Bay of Onna Village in Okinawa. Along with the Onna Fishery Cooperative Association, Team Beautiful Coral is helping to not only plant and grow this new coral but they are also studying the survival rates of the coral that has been planted to better understand and eliminate it’s natural predators, like the crown-of-thorns starfish.
Our ride aboard the submarine is hard to put into words. It was such a neat experience to see the coral and the fish living amongst it. You walk down into the submarine where there is plenty of seating along the windows. Jymmi, one of the captains of the cruise, was so knowledgeable and excited about the project. His excitement radiated throughout the entire cruise and we learned so much about why coral is endangered and what Ana is doing to help regrow and plant the coral so future generations can experience the amazing sight. According to Jymmi, there are about 600 species of coral and over 400 of these species can be seen in Japan with the majority being in the waters surrounding Okinawa. How cool!
“Cherish the Importance of the Beautiful Sea” is a saying that the local Okinawan people are very proud of and Ana Intercontinental Manza Bay is excited to promote and one day see the completion of the restoration of the underwater landscape. Make sure to visit and experience the Submarine ride of a lifetime, Manza Bay is the only place on Okinawa that has this type of experience.
Adults are ¥3,500 and Child is ¥2,500 for a 30-minute submarine ride.
An Afternoon of Play at Manza Kids Playground
Kids Playland is located right out of the hotel, near the entrance. You do not need to be a hotel guest to enjoy this play area. The area is open 9AM – 6PM with the last admission at 5:30PM. Price is per adult and per child, ranging from ¥900 to ¥1200, depending on the time spent in the area. It may seem a bit pricey, but trust me, it was so worth it! It is aimed for kids aged 1-12, and has such an amazing assortment of toys. They will ask you to sign a release form (English provided) and take each kid’s temperature to make sure they aren’t sick or contagious (amazing, right). From there you can choose the 30 minute session or the 1 hour session. Our kids (aged 5 and 1) both had a ton of fun, we played for about 45 minutes. They have a bouncy area, a huge playhouse complete with a slide and a kitchen, and even a smaller area to build with magnetic blocks. Both of our kids were entertained and had plenty to play with. I can imagine this area would be nice after a day at the beach or after a yummy lunch, when the kids need to work off some of that energy.
Ana Intercontinental Manza Beach is truly an amazing place. Next time you have a chance, take the family up for a day full of adventure, fun and even some coral education. There is enough to do that you could spend the entire day or half a day exploring and experiencing the beautiful resort. I know we will be back very, very soon!