Towards the south of Japan, exists Okinawa, which is more like a collection of some tropical Islands. Okinawa boasts magnificent views that look too good to be real. Some military families are lucky enough to get stationed here during their military career.
Okinawa is also one of the most actively visited tourist destinations in Japan. Having its very own rich history and culture, Okinawa is truly a place that you would want to explore.
Okinawa is home to roughly half the American military force in Japan.There are seven Marine Corps installations on Okinawa. Courtney, Foster, Kinser, and Lester are for Marines and families to live. Futenma, Hansen, and Schwab are for Single or Geo-Bachelor Marines. There is also Kadena Air Base (Air Force), Torii Station (Army) and White Beach Naval Facility(Navy).
Okinawa (and Japan in general) offers lots of activities. Whether you explore on the island, or use it as a stopping point for more wanderlust, this duty station has plenty to offer.
The Best Things To Do When Stationed In Okinawa, Japan
To the Beach!
Most people consider going to Okinawa because of the spectacular beaches that it offers. In Okinawa, there are hundreds of beaches that happen to be the finest. These beaches offer a view of perfect white sand and crystal clear water. Also, it happens to be a wonderful place for deep water diving since it is very rich in marine life and coral reefs.
Venture out into to local restaurants and enjoy local food. There are fresh outdoor markets to get produce and other items. There’s also lot of noodle and sushi to enjoy. Keep in mind that while there are American restaurants brands out there, they will have their own Japanese spin on them.
Explore the Shuri Castle
Before Okinawa was a part of Japan, it used to be a separate country known as Ryukyu. This is what makes Okinawa unique. So in order to explore the rich history, you may want to visit the Shuri Castle which dates back to the 14th century, belonging to the Ryukyu kingdom.
Take a tour of this tropical forest. You can hike, kayak or go snorkeling.
Explore the Churaumi Aquarium
Churaumi aquarium happens to be one of the largest aquariums in Japan and every year, more than two million people visit this great display. It boasts a huge fish tank that is about 7500 meters cubed in volume making it the largest fish tank in the world. The fish tank holds 740 different creates including whales and sharks.
Take a walk at War Memorial Peace Park
The War Memorial peace park is a memorial park that is built in memory of all the soldiers and people who lost their lives fighting the World War 2. Indeed, this is the perfect place for a morning or evening walk due to the sheer amount of tranquility that it offers. This is perhaps due to its neatly built gardens.
There are smaller more secluded island around Okinawa to get some serenity. Or you can go to the main island for a little more city action.
Find entertainment at Okinawa World
Find some entertainment at the Okinawa world which is a theme park having themed as the Okinawan village. Hence, it offers some great insight and experience into Okinawa’s rich local culture and heritage. The park boasts a cave that is 5000m in length dating back to 300000 years known as Gyokusendo cave.
If you have a day to spend, go take a whale watching tour. The best time of year is January through March.
Okinawa is known for its fishing so you can take part on a little fishing cruise. Many fishing trips also come with the equipment so that you do not need to rent your own in advance.
Go to Cape Manzamo
Cape manzamo happens to offer the most well-known scenic sights in Okawa. The limestone cliff within the Onna village is also known to show a great view of the sunset. Hence, it offers the perfect setting for a romantic evening.
Shop at Mihama American Village
The Mihama American Village is a very popular shopping resort area that is near the American military base. It boasts a number of shops that are American themed along with pubs, cafes, and restaurants. Indeed, it is a wonderful place if you simply want to drink, eat, or shop. If you go further down, you will reach the sunset beach which is a popular place for watching the sunset. This is where couples often stop for a romantic moment.
Nightlife on Naha
There are a huge number of bars and clubs to choose from. Some play live music as well. You can taste the local beer which Okinawa is famous for as well.
Makishi Public Market
The Makishi Public Market, also known as “the Kitchen of Okinawa”, features many, many different grocery stores with yummy fresh seafood, meats, and fruit.
Cherry Blossom Festival
Japan in general has come of the most beautiful gardens, flowers, and trees in the world. Every year, the sakuras or cherry blossoms come into bloom which make for a spectacular site
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