february nakijin cherry blossoms

Okinawa in February

Enjoy spring blooms and cooler weather perfect for exploring the sights

Cherry blossoms are in bloom in much of Okinawa in February, adding extra beauty to the sights and attractions of the islands. February’s cooler temperatures and low humidity compared to Okinawa’s hot summers make it the perfect month to sightsee and explore. From whale watching to World Heritage, there is plenty to enjoy in February.

Quick tips

  • Bring a sweater and a jacket. Northerly winds can make it feel colder than it actually is.
  • Check the cherry blossom forecast to find the best place to see the blooms.
  • Book a whale-watching tour to see the whales that migrate to Okinawa in winter.

February weather in Okinawa

february okinawa weather
Bring a sweater in case of chilly weather while exploring.

Daytime temperatures in February average around 17 degrees Celsius (63 degrees Fahrenheit), with highs and lows of about 20 and 13 degrees Celsius. While the weather is cool for Okinawa standards, you will still be able to enjoy the outdoors comfortably. It is recommended to bring long-sleeved tops, a jacket, and a windbreaker for windy days.

What to do in February

february nakijin castle
Indoor activities are a great way to enjoy rainy June days.

February is a great month to explore the many castles and World Heritage sites of Okinawa without breaking a sweat. You can also enjoy cherry blossoms and other springtime blooms, and seasonal activities like whale watching. Diving is possible, but you will need an appropriate wetsuit, and a coat to take on the boat with you.

Whale watching

february whale watching okinawa
A whale breaching the surface of the water

February is peak whale-watching season, and many tours operate from Naha and the Kerama Islands. There is a high chance to see humpback whales, which migrate to the warm waters of Okinawa to breed and raise their young. You may spot a mother whale swimming with her calves, or see a whale jump out of the water in what is called a “breach.” Check our whale watching guide for more information on tours and whale behavior.

Cherry blossom viewing

february naha cherry blossom festival
Unlike the rest of Japan, February is prime cherry blossom time in Okinawa.

Despite the frigid temperatures in the rest of Japan, you can see cherry blossoms and other springtime flowers in Okinawa in February. The cherry trees in Okinawa bloom before anywhere else in Japan and add bursts of color to the central and southern parts of Okinawa’s main island in February. Popular viewing spots include Yogi Park for the Naha Chura Cherry Blossom Festival, and Yaese Park for the Yaese Cherry Blossom Festival.

Explore Okinawa’s castle sites

february nakijin castle site
Marvel at the stonework at Okinawa’s many castle sites.

February’s mild temperatures make it the perfect month to explore Okinawa’s castle sites without the crowds and heat of summer. Although most of the castles are in ruins, seeing their ramparts and gates set amidst tangled forests and panoramic hilltops is a must.

Nakijin Castle

The UNESCO World Heritage Nakijin-jo Site is where Okinawa’s second-largest castle once stood. Visit to explore the sprawling grounds, and the ruins which include impressive limestone walls.

Tamagusuku Castle

The ruins of Tamagusuku Castle are some of the oldest in Okinawa. Walking through the castle site, visitors can see the castle’s foundations and parts of its ramparts. The ruins are not far from Sefa Utaki, the spiritual heart of the Ryukyu Kingdom.

Uegusuku Castle

The ruins of Uegusuku Castle are located on Kume Island and are the highest castle ruins in Okinawa. Very little remains of the castle, but the site offers stunning panoramic views of the island and the ocean beyond.

Discover Okinawan culture

Get in touch with Okinawan culture by visiting sacred sites, traditional villages, museums, and more. Sefa Utaki and the Native Okinawan Village, both on Okinawa’s main island, provide immersive deep dives into the local culture.

february sefa utaki okinawa
Sefa Utaki is Okinawa’s most sacred site.

Experience Ryukyu spirituality

Sefa Utaki is the spiritual heart of Okinawa and a UNESCO World Heritage Site. Legend holds that the sacred site was created by Amamikiyo, the goddess who created the Ryukyu Islands. Explore this beautiful natural sanctuary along a series of walking paths.

february traditional okinawan village
Native Okinawan Village has many examples of traditional architecture.

Explore a traditional Okinawan village

Discover the architecture and atmosphere of the Ryukyu Kingdom era at the Native Okinawan Village, an open-air museum at Ocean Expo Park.

Events in February

February offers a range of events to enjoy in Okinawa. Take the opportunity to enjoy the fun atmosphere of local fairs and festivals.

*Event dates are subject to change, and some events may be canceled or postponed due to weather and other circumstances.

february okinawa yachimun pottery
Enjoy the distinct beauty of Okinawan pottery.

Celebrate Okinawa’s pottery heritage

Discover Okinawa’s yachimun pottery culture, shop for souvenirs, and meet traditional and contemporary potters at the annual Yomitan Pottery Festival.

february nakijin cherry blossom festival
Enjoy the fun atmosphere of cherry blossom festivals at Okinawa’s popular tourist destinations.

Catch the cherry blossoms

View the blossoms at one of several cherry blossom festivals. At the Nakijin Cherry Blossom Festival typically held at the beginning of February, you can see the ruins of Nakijin Castle bathed in a sea of pink cherry blossoms.

february bougainvillea flowers
Bougainvillea blooming in vivid hues

Enjoy springtime flowers

Head to the Southeast Botanical Gardens to see bougainvillea blooming in abundance at the Bougainvillea Fair. The event is part of the Okinawa Flower Carnival, a program of events celebrating Okinawa’s blooms.