Ishigaki, Japan
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MACKS Approved: Ishigaki, Japan

Click through for our Google map.

1. Hotel Cucule: Any hotel that provides cult-chic uniforms for its guests instead of robes is A-OK in our book.

2. Euglena Garden: This cute cafe/bar is a temple to euglena, which Wikipedia appetizingly describes as a “genus of single-celled flagellate protists.” We think it’s sort of like algae? Our euglena slushie was delish, but we opted to skip the euglena Oreo ice cream.

3. Sumibiyakiniku Yamamoto: Beef place #1, charcoal grills. Come early for the best cuts.

4. Kingyu: Beef place #2, gas grills. Not as atmospheric as Sumibiyakiniku, but we preferred the actual meat here.


5. Penguin Shokudo: This adorbs restaurant specializing in noodle and rice bowls is owned by Ishigaki’s culinary power couple, the Penguins. She hails from Tokyo, he from China, and their artisanal, small-batch chili oil is lauded throughout Japan. Seriously, there’s a waiting list.


Their story was even made into a biopic a couple of years ago called Penguin Fufu. Cross-cultural love, scrappy entrepreneurship, lots of food porn—this story has everything.

6. Yaeyama Style: Noodle shop with a nifty vending machine ordering system. When we arrived, the place was packed with uniformed students from the local high school, slurping and taking selfies.

7. Misushi: Even though, somehow, sushi isn’t big on Ishigaki, there is some around, and this is a great place to get some—fresh fish, flawless tempura, lovely owner.

8. Mirumiru: Ice cream

9. Parlor Sango: Teeny cafe serving light bites and shave ice. Also home to the Egg Project, a 100+ year old traditional house converted into a pop-up space and sometimes yoga studio.

10. Uganzaki lighthouse and beach


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