Famously known for its mirages in spring and winter, Toyama Bay is a very mysterious place.
First, while being on the Sea of Japan side, its landscape looks as if it is hollowed largely inside, with almost no shallow water. It gets sharply deep from the shore, the deepest ocean point going more than 1,000 meters into the sea. This is where warm and cold currents meet, forming a number of complex submarine valleys which make for an ideal environment for a wide variety of fish and shellfish – reportedly 500 of the 800 Japanese local species live in the Sea of Japan. But so much remains unknown about the creatures living in the deep-sea area, and they are the subject of constant research by ocean development organizations. The deep ocean water, which is well-balanced and rich in minerals, is used in many different applications such as high-class cosmetics.
Toyama Bay boasts a wide range of seafood, and as the fishery is close to the port, it is possible to transport seafood to ports and markets while preserving freshness, leading to the area being called a “natural fish tank.” This is the exact reason why the seafood from Toyama is said to be especially fresh.
The mystic white shrimp lives only near marvelous Toyama Bay. Many people would imagine gray, reddish brown or – for smaller ones – orange or pink when hearing the word “shrimp”. However, the white shrimp that can be fished only near Toyama Bay is merely 5 to 8 centimeters in length from head to tail, with a shiny transparent body and beautifully light pink eyes and tail; It is called the “ocean jewel” or “sea fairy” for its mystical look.
These jewel-like beautiful white shrimps can be tasted raw as sushi or fried together as a piece of tempura (called kakiage), but they are best enjoyed as white shrimp crackers, if you want a simple taste of Toyama local flavors. There are a number of famous shops in the prefecture. Many use Toyama rice with the best quality salt seasonings, along with the fine flavor of white shrimp. You can get a taste of Toyama Bay’s amazing natural resources and wonder about the mysteries of the sea, most of which remain unraveled.
Japanese prawn crackers are different from the ones in Southeast Asia. They are not deep-fried and have a stronger flavor.
CiC Bldg 5F 1-2-3 Shintomi-cho Toyama-shi Toyama-ken
Toyama Station specialties Museum
1-227 Meirin-cho Toyama-shi Toyama-ken