Trip ideas, travel stories, and things to do in Okinawa
Whether it is your first time to Okinawa or your fifth, these iconic destinations have something for everyone, from family-friendly fun and beachside bliss to active adventure.
Nature & Wildlife
- Family Fun in Yambaru National Park
- Enjoy local flavors, natural beauty, and family fun in northern Okinawa / Home to the magnificent Yambaru National Park, the northern part of Okinawa Island is an area rich in natural beauty and rare wildlife. Spend an enjoyable day in this exciting part of Okinawa.
- Your Guide to Whale Watching in Okinawa
- Find out when, where, and how to see these majestic creatures in Okinawa / From January to March, the ocean around Okinawa is full of action. It is the time of year when humpback whales can be seen in the waters around Okinawa’s islands.
- Yanbaru—Getting Back to Nature
- Explore the forests, mangroves, waterfalls, and unique wildlife of Yambaru National Park. Paddle through mangroves and take a guided night walk to spot rare fauna. / Lush green forests, mangroves, waterfalls, and
- Safe Travel in Okinawa Post-COVID
- Learn the basics of safe travel in Okinawa in a post-COVID world / This much is certain: the coronavirus pandemic has forever changed the face of travel. But to keep things in perspective, the world has faced significant travel challenges as recently as 2001.
Heritage & Tradition
- Explore Okinawan History and Pottery Traditions
- Dive into Okinawan history with a visit to an ancient castle site, and explore a yachimun pottery village / Located on the east coast of the south-central part of Okinawa’s main island, Nakagusukuwan Port offers an
- Discover Eisa—Okinawa’s Traditional Dance
- Summer in Okinawa is synonymous with eisa, the islands’ vibrant folk dance / Obon is a celebration that is a quintessential part of summer in Japan. Held in mid-August, it is a time when the entire
- Explore the Crossroad of Okinawa’s Past & Present
- Experience the rich history of the Ryukyu Kingdom at Shurijo Castle / The Ryukyu Kingdom emerged about 600 years ago, when the Ryukyu Islands (which make up present-day Okinawa)
- Discovering Sefa-Utaki, Okinawa’s Spiritual Heart
- Explore the spiritual nature of Okinawa’s World Heritage / Utaki is the name for traditional holy places in the Ryukyu Islands. Sefa-utaki, located on the southern coast of Okinawa’s main island, is the most sacred of them all.
Flavors of Okinawa
- Explore the Old-School Atmosphere of Sakaemachi
- Naha’s Sakaemachi area is home to tiny alleyways full of retro charm / My first impression when I arrived in Okinawa was how welcoming people are. Even if you don’t speak Japanese, people seem interested and do their best to
- 10 Must-Try Okinawa Street Foods
- These are unique dishes not to miss while island hopping / For centuries Okinawa has been a melting pot, a confluence of cultures coming together to create something completely unique.
- Okinawa is Riding the Wave of Specialty Coffee
- Okinawa has a close-knit coffee community that is pushing the envelope when it comes to producing local brews / The global coffee boom has led to a diversity of outstanding coffee shops in Okinawa
- The Revival of a Ryukyu Spirit
- In addition to awamori, Okinawa is home to imuge, a unique island spirit distilled from sweet potatoes / During the time of the Ryukyu Kingdom, working-class locals brewed their own alcohol.
Shopping & Relaxation
- Enjoy Rest and Relaxation in Southern Okinawa
- Refresh both body and spirit with a relaxing getaway on the southern side of Okinawa’s main island / Okinawa’s warm subtropical climate and clear, azure waters have made the islands a popular marine sports destination.
- IIAS Okinawa Toyosaki: One-Stop Shop for Fun
- An entertainment and shopping complex with something for everybody / IIAS Okinawa Toyosaki is an expansive entertainment and shopping complex only 20 minutes from Naha Airport.
- Family Fun in Chatan
- Enjoy a sightseeing cruise, luxury shopping, local food, and more in central Okinawa / Chatan is a town located in the central part of Okinawa’s main island, a place where Okinawan, Asian, and American cultures all mix.
- Fun in the Sun on Miyako Island
- Explore the incredible scenery, history, and culture of the Miyako Islands / Boasting superb natural beauty, the Miyako Islands are famous for the spectacular colors of their crystal-clear waters,
Activities & Experiences
- Okinawa’s Top 10 Marine Activities
- Discover the best of Okinawa’s ocean activities / Okinawa is known for its blue ocean, white sandy beaches, and glittering sun. Spending time at the beach watching the waves crash onto the shore is a
- A Fun Day in Southern Okinawa
- Zoom around on a jungle buggy, shop ‘til you drop, and dine on local delicacies around Naha Port / Naha Port, the gateway to Okinawa for many travelers, offers easy access to popular tourist attractions and facilities.
- Okinawa Diving Guide
- Discover what makes Okinawa such a captivating diving destination / The waters around Okinawa support around 200 of the world’s 800 species of coral. They are a paradise for sea life, rich in nutrients,
- Get to Know Naha
- These three themed tours are the perfect way to explore Okinawa’s capital / The city of Naha is multifaceted. It was the main port and trade hub in the heyday of the Ryukyu Kingdom,
- Presenting the Power of Okinawa “Power of Pottery”
- In Okinawa, pottery is known as “yachimun” and the beautiful colors and carefree forms make these pieces exciting, guaranteed to make serving food more fun. From Naha, it took about 50 minutes by car to get to Yomitan-son where I met the hands that craft such pottery.
- Contribute to Okinawa’s Sustainability with Responsible Travel
- Join the island communities of Okinawa in their effort to preserve the environment they call home / For more than 20 years, Okinawa has nurtured a growing trend toward achieving sustainability on all levels of society.
- Presenting the Power of Okinawa “Power of Textiles”
- How did the unique view of the world shown in traditional Okinawan textiles come about? Muneyoshi Yanagi, a researcher of folk arts with a deep understanding of Okinawa’s traditional culture, said “Wherever you go in Japan, there are few regions that can match the exceptional and diverse fabrics found in Okinawa.
- Presenting the Power of Okinawa “Power of Place”
- Places like Churaumi Aquarium and Shuri Castle are wonderful to visit, that is true, but if you take one step further you can witness typical Okinawan scenery and how the people here live. Experience red-tiled roofs and coral walls, small but wonderful side paths that lead to the sea, or flavors produced in this special place called Okinawa.