Enjoy and eisa drum show, a glass blowing center, a pottery village, an awamori shop (to include habu saki), and a reptile museum. You'll get to see a handler agitate a cobra and watch a habu compete with a mongoose.
- 22 Feb - Okinawa Marathon
- 28 Feb - National Biscuit Day
- 29 Feb (1000-1700) - Okinawa International Festival (Okinawa Children's Zoo)
- 4 Mar (1400-2200) - Shashin Day - Yomitan Village Culture Center
- 7 Mar - Benoki Dam Festival & Marathon (Benoki Dam, Kunigami Village)
- 21 Mar - Higashi Village Azalea Festival (Azalea Eco Park, Higashi Village)
- 10 Apr - Ryukyu Kaien Festival (Ginowan Kaihin Park next to Okinawa Convention Center)
- 10 Apr-10 May - Okinawan Moon Princess Cosmos Festival (Gesashi, Higashi Village)
- 25 Apr - Hija River Koinobori Festival (Hija River Park, Kadena Town)
1st week - Golden Week
- Kume Marathon (Nakazato Athletic Park, Kume Island)
1st weekend - Okinawa International Carnival (Gate 2 Street)
1st weekend - Ishigaki Festival (Shinei Park, Ishigaki Island)
1-3 Nov - Ginowan Culture Festival (Ginowan City Community Center, Ginowan Athletic Park)
1-3 Nov - Shuri Castle Festival (Shuri Castle Park and Kokusai Street Naha)
Okinawan Jazz Music Festival (Ginowan City Convention Center Outdoor Theater)
Urasoe Music Festival (Urasoe City Hall)
Japanese Pro Baseball
Winter camps for mainland Japan's professional baseball league are held in Okinawa.
Nago - Nippon Ham Fighters
Urasoe - Yakult Swallows
Okinawa City - Hiroshima Carp
Ginowan City - Yokohama Baystars
Miyako Island - Orix
Ginoza - Hanshin Tigers
Take a Ferry from Motobu (west of Nago) to the island famous for being the site of famed WWII reporter Ernie Pyle's death/memorial and for it's annual lily festival. Rent a bike on the beach and take a ride around the island.
Heading out to see the great lighthouse on Cape Zanpa pack up some carrots and celery for the animals. There is a place to see goats, ducks and rabbits close up and your kids can feed them through a fence.
Also you will see the largest ShiShi that I have yet to see!
If you're US military you can check out Okuma, a resort located near the north side of the island. At Okuma you can stay in hotel room like Cabanas, Cabins, or tent camp on the beach or in the grass at the adult camp site.
While at Okuma you can venture out and hike Hiji Falls or check out Hedo Point, the northern most point on the island.
Okinawa Flower and Food Festival
The Okinawa Flower and Food Festival is held every February at the Okinawa Convention Center.
Come and enjoy all the Okinawa has to offer in the way of agricultural and seafood products. Flowers, fruits, vegetables, pork products, seafood, sugarcane and many more items are showcased during the festival and are available for purchase.
Setsubun Festival at the Naminoue Shrine
Setsubun marks the end of the winter season (duting the first week of February). Celebrants perform a ceremony alleged to rid their homes of bad spirits and call in good ones. Each year, people don scary oni masks and throw soy beans out the window while shouting "oniwasoto," or "devils go out." Temples and shrines hold ceremonies where priests lead a purification process and throw packets of soybeans and candy to the assembled crowds.
Even if you don't make it out the the Naminoue Shrine for Setsubun, head out to see the traditional Japanese architechture and seek spiritual well being.
Okinawa Peace Park
Peace Prayer Park is located in the southern part of the island, off route 331. It was built in 1995 and displays the names of both Allied and Japanese who died during the Battle of Okinawa
The park is nicely done. A marble marker reads, "...the Cornerstone of Peace will help spread the peaceful spirit of Okinawa and will contribute to everlasting world peace." Despite this, I found it disconcerting that an exhibit located in an adjacent building featured the drawings of child survivors of the Battle of Okinawa. The majority of the drawings showed Americans bombing and otherwise killing Okinawan civilians. Needless to say as the only Americans visiting this portion of the park, we felt extremely uncomfortable. There is a similar sentiment at the Japanese Naval Headquarters located nearby.
- Historical Travel
- Museum Visits
When in Okinawa you must climb Hiji Waterfall. It is up by Okuma (the locals will knwo where it is). It was absolutely amazing. It costs 200 yen (a litlle less than 2 dollars). The hike takes about an hour and you can either climb up the waterfall itself or up the stairs alongside the waterfall. The experience is definately one you will never forget!
- Mountain Climbing
- National/State Park
- Hiking and Walking
Gyokusendo cave is located in the south of Okinawa, between Tamagusuku village and Gushikami village. It is claimed to have the greatest stalactites and stalagmites in Asia. At 5 kilometers, the cave is Japan's second longest with 890 meters currently open to the public. Gyokusendo cave has 1,000,000 stalactites, which is the largest number in Japan.
- Family Travel
This largest castle in Okinawa was built at the end of 14th century.
Distroyed during the WW II/the war of Okinawa in 1945, and re-opened in 1992 after a six years of planning and rebuilding.
- Castles and Palaces
Okinawa World (Culture Kingdon Gyokusendo)
A theme park promoting the Okinawan history, culture and nature.
In here you can also find Gyokusendo Cave. The 2nd longest cave in Japan.
- Theme Park Trips
You'll find several diving shop and school here. This is also where you can find surfers waiting for the perfect wave.
- Diving and Snorkeling
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