April 20, 2017
The Best 10 Things to Do in Miyako-jima Island, Okinawa
Miyakojima is the fourth largest island in Okinawa prefecture and is full of spectacular scenery and beautiful beaches. Miyakojima is known for great beaches and clear waters, and it is a popular destination for vacation. There are also interesting cultural spots and places of untouched nature besides beaches in Miyakojima. In this article, the best 10 places you must visit in Miyakojima will be introduced.
1. Kurima Bridge
The Kurima Bridge (Kurima Ohashi) is a bridge connecting the main island of Miyakojima and Kurimajima which is one of the neighboring Islands. The 1,690 meters long bridge is gracefully designed and has a shape of an arch for vessels to pass under the bridge.
When you are ascending the bridge, it makes you feel like as if you were walking or driving toward the sky.
You will be surrounded by clear blue waters and breathtaking views when crossing the Kurima Bridge. The bridge is one of the most popular tourist spots that you cannot miss in Miyakojima.
Name: Kurima Bridge (Kurima Ohashi)
Address: Kurima, Shimoji, Miyakojima
Access: 15 minutes by car from the Miyako airport
Parking: Left side before the bridge, at the Ryugujo observation tower
2. Cape Nishi Henna-zaki
Cape Nishi Henna-zaki is a cape sticking out to the East China Sea. This cape has one of the astonishing view points, and you can overlook Ikema Island and the Ikema Bridge from the observation tower.
You can enjoy a great view of Miyakojima’s transparent sea any time of the day, but its sunset is exceptionally beautiful. You can have amazing scenery of Miyakojima’s blue sea turning into red as the sun goes down.
Cape Nishi Henna-zaki is a perfect place to have a romantic sunset view with someone special. If you are traveling with loved one, make sure you add Cape Nishi Henna-zaki on the list of places to visit.
Name: Cape Nishi Henna-zaki
Access: 25 minutes by car from the Miyako airport toward Karimata direction via the route 230
Parking: Free parking available
3. Shigira Ougon Onsen
Do you know there is a natural hot spring in Miyakojima? Shigira Ougon Onsen is a natural hot spring in Miyakojima and the Japan’s most southern hot spring as well.
Shigira Ougon Onsen has open-air hot spring baths, and you can swim at the Jungle Pool that uses hot spring water. You can have a different experience from a traditional hot spring at Shigira Ougon Onsen.
Shigira Ougon Onsen is a sodium chloride hot spring and the color of hot spring’s water is golden. They also offer special rooms with private open-air hot spring baths and massages. After spending a fulfilling day visiting around Miyakojima, Shigira Ougon Onsen is a great place to relax.
Name: Shigira Ougon Onsen
Address: 1405-223, Uenoshinzato, Miyakojima-shi, Okinawa
Business Hours: 12:00 ~ 22:00
Closed: Open throughout the year
Admission Fees: Adults: 2,000yen, Children: 1,000yen
Access: 15 minutes by car from the Miyako airport
4. Miyakojima Marine Park
Miyakojima Marine Park is a underwater observatory that you can watch many kinds of tropical fish swimming in the island. It is a convenient place to have an underwater experience without getting wet.
If you have small children or want to look under the water without actually going into the water, Miyakojima Marine Park would be the best place to visit.
Miyakojima Marine Park has an underwater observatory and a fish pool where you can actually touch fish. This is a nice place to see many tropical fish around Miyakojima. At Miyakojima Marine Park, you can have an easy access to the underwater world with a reasonable price.
Name Miyakojima Marine Park (Miyakojima Kaichu Park)
Address: 2511-1, Hirarakarimata, Miyakojima-shi, Okinawa
Business Hours: 10:00 ~ 18:00
Closed: Open throughout the year
[High school students]: 800yen
[Elementary and Jr. high school students]: 500yen
[Children 6 and under]: Free
Access: 25 minutes by car from the Miyako airport
5. Yonaha-Maehama Beach
Yonaha-Maehama Beach is the seven kilometers of white sand coastline, and you can enjoy astonishing landscape. As its beautiful white sand is described as the most beautiful sand in the east, it is a perfect place to sun bathing and relax.
Spending a relaxing time at Yonaha-Maehama Beach makes you feel like as if you were inside a post card. You can also enjoy variety of marine sports, such as snorkeling, yacht, and boat.
At Yonaha-Maehama Beach, everyone can find things to do, such as marine sports, sun bathing, swimming, and relaxing on the beach. If you cannot decide which beach to go, you should go to Yonaha-Maehama Beach.
Name: Yonaha-Maehama Beach
Address: Shimijiyonaha, Miyakojima-shi, Okinawa
Access: From the Miyako airport take route 390 heading to south for 30 minutes, then 10 km toward Yonaha-Maehama direction
6. Shimajiri Mangrove Forests
There are many mangroves in Okinawa, and Shimajiri Mangrove Forests is the largest one in Miyakojima. You can have an unordinary experience, such as finding wild crabs or enjoy bird watching, at Shimajiri Mangrove Forests.
What makes Shimajiri Mangrove Forests special is that you can find wild spices and explore mangroves while sea kayaking. You can have a kayaking experience and enjoy tropical scenery all at once at Shimajiri Mangrove Forests.
Name: Shimajiri Mangrove Forests
Address: Hirarashimajiri, Miyakojimashi, Okinawa
Admission Fees: Free
Access 1: Approximately 25 minutes by car from the Miyako airport
Access2: 30 minutes by walk from the Shimajiri-Iriguchi bus stop
7. Cape Higashi Henna-zaki
Cape Higashi Hennna-zaki is located at the most eastern part of Miyakojima. Its picturesque scenery is often picked as one of the 100 best sceneries in Japan. Enjoy a walk to the tip of the cape with an extraordinary view of the East China Sea and the Pacific Ocean.
There is a nice white lighthouse at the tip of Cape Higashi Henna-zaki. This handsome lighthouse is chosen as one of 50 lighthouses in Japan, and a panoramic view of the ocean below is spectacular. Cape Higashi Henna-zaki is one of the most beautiful places that you must visit in Miyakojima.
Name: Cape Higashi-Hennazaki
Address: Bora, Gusukube, Miyakojima-shi, Okinawa
Business Hours: 9:00 ~ 16:30
Admission Fees: Adults: 150yen, Children: 20yen
Access 1: Approximately 40 minutes by car from Hirara
Access 2: Approximately 30 minuts by car from the Miyako airport
8. Painagama Beach
Painagama Beach is accessible by walk from a town and is popular among families with children. The beach offers a netted area for swimming and has a safe and clean beach. It is a perfect place to swim in the transparent water or to relax on the beach.
Painagama Beach is also known for its beautiful sunset. If you are looking for a romantic place in Miyakojima, you should try Painagama Beach.
Name: Painagama Beach
Address: Shimozato, Miyakojima-shi, Okinawa
Access: 10 minutes by walk from the city of Hirara
Yabiji (or Yaebishi) is a big group of coral reefs located in the northern part of Miyakojima and is also famous for its diving and snorkeling spots in the world.
Yabiji can be accessed only by boat, but it is definitely worth a trip. Once a year during the spring tide, the coral reefs appear above the water. If you are in Miyakojima during this time period, you must include Yabiji for a place to visit.
Name: Yabiji (or Yaebishi)
Address: Approximately 15 km north of Miyakojima
Time required to get there: 30 minutes by boat from Ikema Island
Access: Book a tour at a tour company
Fees: Depends on a tour company
(There are many tours offered at diving shops in Ikema Island. A tour with lunch is around 9,000yen.)
10. Sunayama Beach
Sunayama Beach is one of Miyakojima’s most famous beaches and is chosen as the best beach in Japan three years in a row. After ascending a narrow path of a sandy mountain, it opens to a breathtaking view of the powdery white sand and transparent waters that are so clear that you could see through the bottom.
Sunayama Beach is a famous and popular beach for locals and tourist, yet it is surprisingly quiet and never crowded. This is the beach that you can fully enjoy Miyakojima’s beautiful sea. You must visit the most beautiful beach in Japan while you are in Miyakojima.
Name: Sunayama Beach
Address: 705, Nikadori, Miyakojima-shi, Okinawa
Access: 15 minutes by car from the Hirara port
Let’s enjoy Miyakojima’s magnificent scenery and beautiful sea!
Miyakojima offers beautiful beaches and spectacular scenery and is full of attractions. You can benefit its unique nature of the tropical island in Miyakojima. Let’s plan a trip to Miyakojima and enjoy its magnificent scenery and beautiful sea!