Okinawa 沖縄

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What is there to do and see in Okinawa?

Far from the bustle of Japanese cities, on the shores of the pacific ocean with its many shades of blue, in the middle of a beautiful natural setting and a rich and unique culture: a trip to the Okinawa islands is a magical interlude in the tropical Japanese waters. Discover Okinawa.

The tropics in Japan: Paradise islands and subtropical climate

The Okinawa islands extends for approximately 400km from north to south, for 1,000km from east to west and covers 2,281km2 of land. It is surrounded by the East China Sea and the Pacific Ocean and contains 160 islands, of which only 49 are inhabited. The population is around 1.44 million (as of May 2018), with the majority being based on the main island, Okinawa honto.

Okinawa enjoys a subtropical climate and does not have a cold season. With an average temperature of 17℃, January is the coldest month and July is the hottest with an average of around 29 ℃. It is in Okinawa that the first cherry trees blossom, the kanhizakura, a variety specific to the region.

Okinawa receives a lot of rain between May and June, the rainy season. It is also located in the typhoon zone, with typhoons generally occurring from June to September-October.

City Guide Naha

  • Okinawa, the little Hawaii

With a surface area of 1,206km2, the main island of Okinawa, honto, is the fifth biggest island in Japan. It has 476 kilometers of coastline. Its capital, Naha, is the political and economic hub of the prefecture. The main attractions are also located on the island and in Naha. Historical sites, such as the Shuri Castlethe ruins of Nagagusuku Castle and the former HQ of the Imperial Japanese Navy.

The American presence is still strongly felt around the base in the American village. All of the leisure activities worthy of a little Hawaii can be found there, including cocktails.

Murasaki-mura Beach

Murasaki-mura beach, near Yomitan

Japan Experience

Eisa in Okinawa

Eisa in Okinawa

Flickr, Cliff Kimura

Okinawa Ryukyu Glass

Okinawan Ryukyu Glass

Pixabay

  • Yaeyama, untamed beauty and Ryukyu culture

The most distant islands make up the Yaeyama group, which will be of interest to nature lovers and those interested in traditional culture. The biggest of these islands is that of Ishigaki-jima. The island of Iriomote, which is fully protected, is famous throughout Japan for its jungle and its wild cats. Similarly, the island of Taketomi has the best-preserved traditional villages in Okinawa. Visits take place in carts pulled by water buffalo.

Yonaha Maehama beach, Miyakojima

Yonaha Maehama beach, Miyakojima

The huge bridge connecting Ikema to Miyako-jima

The huge bridge connecting Ikema to Miyako-jima

Shirahama beach

Shirahama beach

iriomotejima wordpress

Urauchi River, Iriomote

Urauchi River, Iriomote

iriomotejima wordpress

How to travel to Okinawa?

The most convenient way to get to Okinawa is by air. This is particularly true with the airline JAL, which offers several routes to and within the archipelago, at reduced prices with its JAL Japan Explorer Pass. Through the various airlines, three to eight direct flights a day serve Naha airport from Japan's main cities (Tokyo, Osaka, Fukuoka...). Expect a flight time of between 2h00 and 2h30. Low-cost airlines also offer flights.

Direct flights connect the islands of Miyako and Ishigaki with Tokyo and Osaka (3h00 to 3h30 flight time).

You can get around the islands by bus or bicycle, or rent a car on the main island. 

Ferries link the smaller islands in a group, but air travel is preferred between Okinawa, Miyako and Yaeyama. Allow around 30 minutes for the flight between these islands.

Le monorail d'Okinawa

The Okinawa Monorail in Naha

Wikimedia Commons

Our tours in Okinawa

  • Duration : 6 days
  • Locations : Okinawa
  • Included : 3* Hotels, Guided activities, Car rental, Beaches
See all our Tours (1)