Hiroshima - What/where to eat, what to do with kids?
First trip to Hiroshima (will be in Miyajima, Hiroshima City, and Onomichi). and given the upcoming Michelin guide suggests there is some really good food to be had. Not sure the guide will be out in time so looking for some recommendations. Happy to go off the mainstream of restaurants; open to high-end, mid-range, and low-end ($$) suggestions. I know Hiroshima is famous for okonomiyaki but any other must tries? I will be with Japanese friends so language will not be a problem. Some meals will be with kids and some, adults only.
Speaking of kids and on another note, I will also have my two boys with me, ages 6 and 8. Unrelated to food, any suggestions what I can do with them in terms of sight seeing and local ToDos?
We're going to Hiroshima (among other places) with kids in April, so I'l be interested to see what recs you get. I don't know when you'll be there, but we're planning to go to a ballgame--the Hiroshima Carp! In Mazda Zoom Zoom Stadium!
Also the Peace Garden, of course.
Rather than the okonomiya I suggest you try the oysters. One place serves an incredible lunch is called Kakitei Conclave. It is located along the Kyobashi river and has an open air seating area with red tables and umbrellas.
re: E Eto
Hi. We will be spending 3 days there (the rest in Tokyo) the last week of March. No set agenda so no real feel for how much high-end vs casual. Honestly, high-end is really not a high-priority unless there is a must-try restaurant. I would probably do that as a dinner solely with my wife (and leave the kids with my in-laws). For the remainder, my preference is to simply find some of the local favorites. Hope this makes sense. Thanks!
The end of March is just when things are changing around seasonally around here. For a sample of down and dirty local eating, you should check out any of the Kakigoya (Oyster Huts) that are set up by the local oyster farmers. There's not a tradition of eating them raw on the halfshell in Japan, but they have a buy by the kilo (for a great value) and a grill setup for you to grill your own. These huts also offer a few other seafoods. I'm not as keen on the oyster places set up by the department stores, like on the rooftop of the Mitsukoshi. They offer a wider variety of preparations, but it's likely to be sitting in the heating tray for longer than it needs. I would say it is essential to try kaki-nabe when you're in town. Many of the places that offer it seasonally should still have it on the menu, but like I said, late March is when those items change around on the menus. My favorite is still at Kodani (see here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/267140 ). You should also try an okonomiyaki topped with oysters, or with oysters cooked in (depending on where you go, and if they're still being offered), or a side order of butter sauteed oysters.
You could also go to one of the grander Setouchi ryori places for their course dinners, which could include fugu. It's pretty reasonable around here. (see here: http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/692830 )
And when you're going to Miyajima, don't forget to stop and get some anago-meshi. (http://chowhound.chow.com/topics/491480)
As for activities with kids, there's the Shimanami Kaido from Onomichi through the bridges connecting the islands to Shikoku that could be a good day activity. Or sea kayaking around Miyajima (though March could be pretty cold still). Or a trip to the samurai village in Iwakuni. Hiroshima castle might be good, but if you're visiting other castles, Hiroshima's might only offer the short end of the stick. I don't want to get too far off-topic, but if you want to contact me via email at the address on my profile page, I would be glad to make other recommendations.