The best and fastest way to get around city. It is cheap - 600 Yen day pass (24 hours), 1000 yen for 48 hours - even cheaper then you taking bus, and of course faster. Besides, due to it is elevated, you can have a fantastic city view while riding it.
In case that you arrive in Naha by cruiseship you should be aware of the fact that the town of Naha is almost 7km from the cruiseport and it is the best to take a taxi in order to get to town.
Dont forget to take a piece of paper with you that has the ships adress for the taxidriver written also in japanese writing, we got that at the pursers office of our ship M/S Delphin Voyager. The drivers might be able to speak a bit english, but very often when you ask to be taken to the port, they think its the airport !
The Monorail in Naha is almost brand-new as it was opened in 2003 and as a foreigner the only thing that might be a problem for you there is how to get a ticket from the machine without beeing able to read japanese.
The Monorail starts at the airport and has about 15 stops before it finally ends next to Shuri-castle, so it is the perfect way of transport for tourists and you also see some interesting parts of the town from the train, that is gliding high above the street-level through town.
The fare of the monorail for 5 stations was 230 YEN one way and trains were running every 10 minutes.
Directely at the ships-dock there was a taxi-company with a person talking english and he had a list of some organized taxitours for prefixed prices, so this might be a good idea in case that you dont want to pay the mostly overpriced tours of your cruise-company. b.t.w. the car that you see in my main photo here is no taxi at all, but I liked its great decorations !
prices are per car for a maximum of 4 passengers per taxi:
Shurijo Castle - 2 hours 6880 YEN
Former Jp. Navy Underground H.Q. - 3 hours : 10320 YEN
Himeyuri Monument - 4 hours : 13760 YEN
Ryukyu Glass Mura - 5 hours : 17200 YEN
To the city the taxifare is about 1400 YEN
The Bus, both local and long distance are still the primary mode of public transport, and covers the most territory.
Long distance info:
Local buses are fun to ride, but be forewarned that there is a chronic traffic problem in Naha, so allow time for the critical appointments.
Just opened in 2003, this cute monorail for the central city of Naha comprises one line from the Airport one end and Shuri Castle on the other end, with about 10-15 stops mid-way. Total journey time one way is about 30 mins.
It is Okinawa's only functioning public rail transport, so hopefully will help reduce auto traffic problem.
The Monorail goes from the airport, through the main areas of town out to its terminus at Shuri, close to Shuri Castle.
A day pass at 600 yen is not bad value.