Utaki (sacred sites) are scattered throughout the islands of Okinawa. Historically the purview of priestesses and kings, these sites have recently seen an uptick in visitors interested in exploring their own history.
On 31 October, 2019, a massive fire tore through the UNESCO World Heritage site of Shuri Castle in Okinawa, sparking a global reaction and comparisons with the devastating fire at Notre Dame, another World Heritage site. The New York Times and other outlets reported that Japanese officials had expressed alarm and concern about the vulnerability of domestic sites like Shuri Castle after the fire in Paris in April 2019.
Work to rebuild Okinawa Prefecture’s treasured Shuri-jo castle, including its Seiden main hall, will…
About a month after fire ravaged the UNESCO World Heritage site in Okinawa, donations to help rebuild Shuri Castle in Naha surpass ¥1.2 billion.
After Japan’s historic UNESCO-listed Shuri castle was devastated by fire Thursday, here are other cases of major heritage sites that have gone up in the…
People in Okinawa are feeling the loss after watching one of their most iconic buildings engulfed in flames. As investigators narrow in on the cause of last week’s fire at Shuri Castle, people are calling for a swift restoration.
Uniting Japanese, Chinese and Ryukyuan elements, heritage site should rise again…
Almost US$1 million has been raised to restore the ancient structure after 400 artefacts were destroyed and six buildings left beyond repair.
Fearsome flames engulfed the Shuri Castle of Okinawa, Japan early Thursday, October 31st.
Source: The Ryukyu Castles of Okinawa
Sunny, balmy, it is the Miami, Hawaii, Boracay of Japan
A rare snowstorm dumped heavy snow and plunged Tokyo into travel chaos on Jan. 22, according to reports. Other parts of Japan are equally in the grip of winter. But there’s one area in that country that’s free of sleet and snow, and, in fact, is about to welcome cherry blossoms: Okinawa.
The tiny island off the southern tip of Japan experiences sakura season much earlier, from late January to mid-February. Okinawa itself is just the biggest island (about 1,206 square kilometers) in a group of 160 islands comprising the Okinawa Prefecture, which is home to about 1.4 million people.
Because of its subtropical location—think Miami, Hawaii, Cancun on the same latitude—Okinawa experiences balmy weather all year, even in winter. At this time, for instance, while the rest of Japan is bundled up, it’s like Baguio in Okinawa, the breeze crisp and nippy but not chilly.
If you think that you need to travel to Japan just to get to Okinawa, think again! Start planning here!
Wherever you are in Asia, getting to Okinawa is as simple as 1-2-3.
Travelers from Singapore usually have the option of a special chartered flight that often runs during May to June and November to December during the Singapore school holiday season for a quick and direct connection to Okinawa. But outside that window, it doesn’t mean being stuck for options to visit Okinawa.
Short Hop to Okinawa
Bangkok is often a quick trip for shopping and eating when a long weekend comes by. But add-on Okinawa as it’s just a short flight away!
Okinawa, Japan’s Katsuren castle has long been celebrated for its rich history (it’s a UNESCO world heritage site), but it seems that its past is a lot more complicated than previously believed. Archeologist Hiroyuki Miyagi found nine ancient Roman coins while excavating the Japanese ruins this month.
It was a completely unexpected discovery: Miyagi had only been planning to look at samurai armor but, from his past excavations in Italy and Egypt, was able to recognize the coins instantly. Through subsequent X-ray analysis, the Roman coins were dated to at least 400 AD. (There was also an Ottoman coin from 1687 located.) Studies of the site have been going on for the last three years, so it’s even more surprising the unlikely find only happened now.