July 13, 2017
Top 10 Tourist Attractions & Best Things to Do in Okinawa, Japan
Okinawa is a very popular holiday destination, as you can enjoy the resort mood very easily. Even if you say “Okinawa”, in a word, there are various types of other islands in Okinawa. The sightseeing spots are also many, especially the beautiful sea and the magnificent sceneries. Whereever you go, you can find a different face of Okinawa. Let’s start!
1. Churaumi Aquarium
The most popular place is this Churaumi Aquarium. It has the largest water tank in the world. The grandness and the beauty overwhelm visitors. In this aquarium, many unusual fish have been breeding, such as Whale Sharks and Tropical Manta-ray. You may meet rare creatures for the first time in your life.
There is an area where the coral reef in the sea of Okinawa has been reconstructed. Also, you can come into touch with the creatures, in a shoal, starfish for example. Even people who can’t swim or small children can have a close touch of the beautiful sea of Okinawa.
Name: Churaumi Aquarium
Address: 424 Ishikawa Motobu-cho Kunigamigun Okinawa prefecture
[Oct. – Feb.] 8:30 – 17:30
[Mar. – Sep.] 8:30 – 20:00
2. Kouri Big Bridge
The Kouri Island is only 2km away from the Okinawa Main Island. Recently, the Big Bridge was completed between the Main Island and the Kouri Island. So, you can drive over the bridge in your rent-a-car. On the Island, there is the Adam and Eve legend, but the latest attraction is the Kouri Big Bridge.
The straight Bridge over the Emerald Green sea draws you into the feeling that you are going up in the air from the sea. When you look around, all you can see is the beautiful sea of Okinawa. It is not hard work now to go to the Kouri Island thanks to the Big Bridge. Why don’t you experience the dreamy world?
Name: Kouri Big Bridge
Address: Kouri Nakijison Okinawa prefecture
Access: a 40-minute-ride in a car from the Kyoda IC on the Okinawa Expressway
3. Shuri Castle
The “Shuri Castle” used to be a castle for a king when Okinawa was a Ryukyu Kingdom. It was the center of the politics and the culture.
The building has the Ryukyu Dynasty Era architecture style. It was influenced by the Chinese culture. The vermillion red appearance of the building makes a beautiful contrast with the blue sky and the sea. The Shuri Castle is located on the hill, so you can see the beautiful scenery around the Castle as well.
Name: Shuri Castle
Address: 1-2 Kanagusuku-cho Shuri Naha-city Okinawa prefecture
[Apr. – June] [Oct – Nov] 9:00 – 19:30
[July – Sep.] 9:00 – 20:30
4. Zanba Cape
The “Zanba Cape” is sticking out 2km towards the sea which is shining with the Emerald Green colour. The cliff is 30m high above the sea and you can see clear across the beautiful blue sea spreading out in front of you, the nearby islands and even the Kerama archipelago.
At the tip of the Cape, there is the white light house. Its white colour makes a wonderful contrast with the blue sky and the sea. It is just the right spot for a photo opportunity. It is a little far from the center of the town, but it’s worth visiting. You can monopolize the splendid seascape of Okinawa from the Zanba Cape!
Name: Zanba Cape
Address: 1861 Aza Uza Yomitanson Nakagami-gun Okinawa prefecture
Access: a 50-minute-ride on a bus from the Okinawa-minami IC on the Okinawa Expressway
5. Star Sand Beach
The “Star Sand Beach” is on the Iriomote isolated Island and it is very popular with sightseers. The secret of the popularity is all about the star-shaped sands on the beach. How cute they are! Enjoying those star-shaped sands, walking on the Beach viewing the beautiful sea will be a feast to your spirit.
Actually, these sands are the dead bodies of Sango-warms and they are washed up on the Beach. Each one of them has a romantic star-shape. As they are so cute, some people take them back home as souvenirs. You can’t miss seeing them, can you?
Name: Star Sand Beach
Address: Uehara Aza Taketomi-cho Yaeyama-gun Okinawa prefecture
Access: a 5-minute-ride in a car from the Iriomotejima Uehara Port
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6. Mihama American Village
The “Mihama American Village” is a complex commercial facility which was created on the site of the former American Base. It is in the north part of the Okinawa Main Island. On the huge site, you can enjoy a lot of shops for shopping, delicious gourmet and the amusement park with a large Ferris wheel. From this Ferris wheel, you can see clear across the beautiful sea and the landscape from the overwhelming height.
Some shops in the Mihama American Village have been selling the goods imported from America. You can strongly feel an American atmosphere there. You can see a different aspect of Okinawa. Why don’t you visit there and enjoy shopping and gourmet?
Name: Mihama American Village
Address: Mihama Aza Chatan-cho Nakagami-gun Okinawa prefecture
Access: a 45-minute-ride on a bus from the Naha bus terminal and a 5-minute-walk from the bus stop
The length of this limestone cave is 5,000m, which is the longest one in Japan. It has been developing even now since 300 thousand years ago. You can see the trace of ticking time. Even people who visited other caves will be astonished with its scale and its beauty.
The “Okinawa World” is created, around the attraction of this limestone cave. So, if you visit the cave, you can enjoy the “Okinawa World” as well. That’s the regular pattern of the sightseeing course. You can enjoy the tropical fruits garden and the Habu (snake) museum. You can enjoy yourself all day long there.
Address: 1336 Maekawa Tamagusuku Nanjo-city Okinawa prefecture
Opening hours: 9:00 – 18:00
Access: an 8-minute-ride in a car from the Haebaru-minami IC.
8. Kabira Bay
In the Ishigaki Island, the “Kabira Bay” is the most popular sightseeing spot. You can see the Emerald Green sea as well as the beautiful scenery of the islands with the abundant nature around the sea. It has been selected among the 100 famous Japanese views. At the low tide, you can see the magnificent coral reef, which is the synonymous with Okinawa.
Unfortunately, swimming is not allowed in the Bay, because the tidal waves are too fast to swim. However, you can enjoy looking into the sea from the glass-bottom boat. It will be a different enjoyment from swimming. Please enjoy yourself, viewing the beautiful colour of water from the land and the sea-world on the boat in the Kabira Bay.
Name: Kabira Bay
Address: 934 Kabira Ishigaki-city Okinawa prefecture
Access: a 30-minute-ride in a rent-a-car from central Ishigaki-city
9. Kami-no-hama Observation Deck
You can enjoy the southern peaceful atmosphere in the Kerama archipelago. This “Kami-no-hama Observation Deck” from where you can see clear across the beautiful seascape with islands floating in the sea, is located on the hill. The sea which you can see from the plain is beautiful, but the sea from the hill is showing off its distinct beauty.
Here, you can enjoy not only the shining blue sea in the daytime, but also the fabulous sinking sun into the East China Sea. You can also see the Kume Island and Tokashiku Island from this Observation Deck.
Name: Kami-no-hama Observation Deck
Address: Ama Zamamison Shimajiri-gun Okinawa prefecture
Access: a 15-minute-ride in a car from the Ferry terminal on the Zamami Island
10. Sunset Beach
As the name shows, from this Beach, you can see the wonderful sunset. The sea of Okinawa glowing red in the light of the sunset is a highlight. You can’t take your eyes off it! As it is close to the Mihama American Village, you can enjoy the exotic atmosphere to the full.
This beautiful sunset is well known as a power spot for love. It is highly recommended for young couples and married couples. The romantic atmosphere will envelop them. In the daytime, you can enjoy BBQ on this Beach. I hope you can enjoy both the daytime and the evening, there.
Name: sunset Beach
Address: 2 Mihama Chatan-cho Nakagami-gun Okinawa prefecture
Access: a 40-minute-ride in a car from the Naha Airport
Let’s Enjoy the Tourist Attractions in Okinawa!
The beautiful sea and the magnificent landscape of Okinawa will make you excited even when you are planning a trip. Surrounded by such a beautiful scenery, breathing the fresh air will release your day to day fatigue! Referring to this information, why don’t you make a plan immediately? It will be a wonderful trip. That’s for sure.