About Okinawa
Island:Ryukyu Islands
Area:2281.00 sq. km

Although each Japanese prefecture is unique in its own way, tropical Okinawa is by far the most distinct, almost like a different country. And that assessment is true to a certain extent; Okinawa, known then as the Ryukyu Kingdom, was independent from Japan until 1879, and was part of US territory from 1945 to 1972. As a result, the culture, food, and even the language (although many do speak standard Japanese) differ vastly from those of any other region.

On Okinawa Island, places of note are the Chura-umi Aquarium, one of the largest aquariums in the world and home to the whale shark, as well as ancient Ryukyu castle ruins, most notably Shuri-jo. Buy your souvenirs at Kokusai-dori, Okinawa’s main street.

Off the main island, the Yaeyama and Miyako Islands have Japan’s most pristine beaches, while traditional Okinawan culture remains there very much.

Things to Do in Okinawa

Latest travel features

Kalakaua Inn: The Kitchen Hostel Ao

Convenient and affordable accommodation in Naha City

World Heritage Nakijin Castle

The three kings of the Ryukyu Islands

Castaway on Nagannu Island

Get lost on a tropical island...

Eisa in Okinawa

Living tradition

Community discussion

Naha Airport Restaurant

Home cooking away from home


Castaway on Nagannu Island

Get lost on a tropical island...

OKINAWA! I want to go back.

Tamie's Kitchen

An excellent vegan cafe in Okinawa's American Village

Sad to see this one is closed permanently... ;( really wanted to go here

Tokashiki Island Ferry

Your options from Naha's Tomari Port

The last ferry is 4pm, so you will have enough time. If you are running late take a taxi to Tomari Port. There are no ATMs there so take enough cash for the taxi and the ferry. Have a great trip. Please...