Okinawa consists of 160 islands of various sizes scattered across a vast area of ocean
Crystal blue seas, white sand beaches, colourful marine life and the Shuri Castle, home of the King of Ryukyu (a World Heritage Site) is what mainly comprises the Okinawa Prefecture. Okinawa consists of 160 islands of various sizes scattered across a vast area of ocean. The temperature in winter is about the same as that of springtime in Tokyo and Osaka, making it warm and comfortable throughout the year. With Okinawa being in the subtropical zone, one can enjoy beautiful flowers in any season. Taiwan Cherries which bloom earlier in Okinawa than anywhere else in Japan, Red Deigo flowers, colourful bougainvilleas, pure white Easter lilies, and beautiful yellow tabebuias make for a delightful sight. Another highlight is the inhabitation of many rare species of plants and animals, such as the Iriomote wildcats (declared a protected species) on Iriomote-jima Island. The crystal blue sea, with white sand beaches and colourful fish dancing through coral, attracts vacationers as a holiday resort area with many diving spots. The must see places in Okinawa include:
Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium
Okinawa Commemorative National Government Park is home to facilities displaying Okinawa’s natural environment, history and culture. In one corner of the park is an aquarium counted as one of the largest in the world. In Okinawan dialect, ‘churaumi’ means ‘beautiful sea’. The largest tank is 8.2-metre-high and 22.5-metre-wide, containing a diversity of sea creatures including whale sharks and reef mantra rays that are some of the largest in the world.
Taketomi Island and Miyako Island
Located at the west of the main island of Okinawa, Taketomi which is also close to Ishigaki Island is an island that preserves one of Okinawa’s ancient villages. Visitors are charmed by the red-roofed houses, roads covered with white sand and the leisurely pace of buffalo carts that circle the island.
Miyako Island, only 45 minutes by plane from the main island, boasts an ocean that is said to be particularity beautiful even in Okinawa, known for its white sandy beaches and coral reef shallows. It is the perfect spot for diving and snorkeling.
Ishigaki Island and Iriomote Island
The Yaeyama Archipelago located to the west of the main island of Okinawa, contains islands that have their own characteristic natural beauty. These include Ishigaki Island which is famous for its picturesque scenery and white sandy beaches and Iriomote Island where one can see mangrove swamps and rare animals like the Irionmote mountain cat. Whether it’s diving, travelling in glass bottomed boats, kayaking or trekking there is no shortage of opportunities to engage with the natural environment.
Sparkling emerald green oceans, white sandy beaches and the beautiful Coral Sea characteristic of the southern isles make for an ideal location. Okinawa offers global brand hotels and a numerous activities that include shopping in the capital city of Naha which has a population of over 300,000 and also marine leisure activities.