Long an independent kingdom that absorbed a mixture of influences from across Asia, Okinawa was brought under Japanese control in 1609. An archipelago of 65 islands that spread across the waters of the Pacific Ocean and the East China Sea, Okinawa is steeped in history and culture, and blessed with a wealth of natural sights - from coral reefs to peaceful beaches.

Given its climate and topography, trips to Okinawa mainly consist of outdoor activities: snorkel through crystal-clear waters, and wade through golden sand beaches; fish for tuna, marlin, and mahi in the deep ocean; and surf the East China Sea.


A handpicked selection of experiences endorsed by our experts. If you can’t see what you’re looking for, let us know, as our extensive network of local contacts can open many doors.

Churaumi Aquarium

Head over to the Motobu peninsula – more specifically to Emerald Beach and the Ocean Expo Park - and see the Churaumi Aquarium. Manta rays and giant whale sharks will thrill visitors, especially those with children.

Ginowan Marina

Ginowan Marina, not far from the Convention Center, is home to an intensely devoted transnational sailing community. Races are held to the Kerama islands and other locales. Visitors can take sailing cruises around various islands and even enroll for sailing classes.

Offshore Fishing

In addition to having some of the best snorkeling and diving in the world, Okinawa, always well regarded as a fishing outpost, has some of the best offshore fishing in the world. Anglers can catch mahi mahi, marlin, tuna and other species.

Snorkeling & Diving

The snorkeling and diving on Okinawa is truly world class, and the number of species and coral types rivals that of the Great Barrier Reef in Australia. Much of the diving can be done from shore, so divers often don’t need a boat. Highlights include the underwater ruins at Yonaguni, while those interested in manta rays should head for Miyako and Ishigaki.


Surfing is yet another outdoor sport that makes Okinawa a popular spot in Japan. There are some excellent point breaks where surfers can test their balance, swimming strength and all-around skill. The waves are challenging and in the summer, the sun is strong and warm. Because of the expanse of the archipelago, there are many surfing spots to choose from.

World War II Historical Sites

In terms of World War II history, Okinawa has a great deal to offer. There is the Peace Memorial Park in Naha, a city on the main island of Okinawa. Visitors will also enjoy a trip to the Himeyuri Monument. The Japanese Navy once had their underground tactical headquarters here, which was used to plan strategy, operations and tactics.

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