How I find things to do in Okinawa

Fun Flying Four Okinawa

I often hear people say that there is nothing to do in Okinawa or I get the question ‘where do I go to find out about whats happening’.

I have put together a quick post about my regular ‘go-to’s’ in the hopes that it helps other expats in Okinawa enjoy this wonderful place as much as we do.

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Websites & Facebook 

-Kadena ITT & MCCS tours+: I follow both of these on Facebook (Kadena ITT, MCCS tours+) and each month they release a calendar with the tours they have on offer. When we first got here we did go on a couple of the organized tours, simply because we were nervous of the expressway; which is actually pretty hilarious now looking back! So while we don’t tend to do the tours because it’s more cost effective for our family to ‘do it yourself’ it is a good resource to see what, if-any, annual events or festivals are coming up.

-Map It! Okinawa : this Facebook page is awesome! A few times a week they post photos from places around the island/upcoming events and even better is they always have directions! They also have a website which I find a tad overwhelming as it is loaded with information so I only tend to go there when I either know exactly what I am looking for but need directions or if I know exactly what area we want to explore but just not sure what to do.

-Okinawa CLIP : this Facebook page is updated almost daily if not more often with gorgeous photos (and sometimes videos) from around the island; beaches, places to eat, upcoming events etc.  It’s fun to learn more about different areas of Okinawa that I may not otherwise find out about. (website)

-Okinawa Story : A tourism website which also has a Facebook page that posts yet more beautiful pictures and awesome information.  Did you ever see the ‘Okinawa : A journey of Discovery” series I believe this was a project of Okinawa Story.

-Okinawa2Go! Project : This Facebook page was awesome, yes, sadly it is no longer being updated, however I do still go back and check out old posts…if you do this too, you will realize how awesome this page was and maybe learn a thing or two!

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Publications 

-Okinawa Living Magazine (monthly) : I love getting this monthly mag, I find the articles interesting, there are often write ups on new food places as well as a little about the culture.  Make sure to check out all the little advertisements in this mag too!

-Okinawa living newspaper (weekly) : this isn’t my favorite of the resources available however it is a good place to find out about on-base happenings.

-Japan update newspaper (weekly) : one of my favorites! The feature article is usually really interesting, more often than not its about an upcoming event. In the middle they have a listing of events for the week ahead and often the back pages sometimes focus on different areas of Okinawa, highlighting points of interests. I also enjoy reading the news bits to hear about what is going on in the local community. You can also find them online here or their Facebook page.

-Venture magazine : I love this magazine for finding out about what’s happening on the bases (mainly Kadena) they advertise some of the many 5k’s as well as what’s going on at the library, arts and crafts centre etc

These are all available on the bases, I am unsure about off base.

-Okinawa Cafe Book : This book is our go-to for finding places to eat, it is a magazine which comes out annually (I think) and I bought my copy at the book store in Hamby Town.  It is jam packed with cafe’s, restaurants, bakeries etc.  This is a must have item for any foodie. (check out Laura’s post all about it…and to see what it looks like so you can pick up your own copy!)

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Bloggers 

Of course one of my favorite things to do is read blogs and we are lucky enough to have plenty of bloggers on island all writing about their own experiences!

Kassie who blogs over at Mr. & Mrs. O has recently left the island but she spent almost 3 years in Okinawa and did bucket loads.  I loved her ‘Oki Fun Day’s’ where she tried out different cafes and a plethora of other things, often joined by Laura over at Inspiration.Sparks.

I love checking in with Laura’s blog and this would be a great one to follow as I know she has many years left on Okinawa to explore she also has adorable style and recently returned from Hong Kong!

You may remember THIS post where I got to ‘interview’ Kara from Ramblings of Marine Wife about her relatively short time on island but my oh my did she squeeze a lot into her time; beaches, parks lots of family friendly adventures were had and she also has some useful information for people about to start their Okianwan adventure.

Rachel an Australian expat blogging at Sea Change Okinawa  is relatively new to the island, she spends lots of time checking out different beaches, snorkeling and yummy cafes!

Lastly, my friend Erin of Makeshift Gypsies we actually first met when our kids became friends at preschool, which is totally irrelevant to this post!  Anyway, Erin also blogs about her family friendly adventures on island.

Are there any resources I should be utilizing but not? let me know! I am ALWAYS on the look out for new things to do!

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13 responses to “How I find things to do in Okinawa

  1. I never had a problem finding things to do in Oki! I checked many of the same places you did and was never at a loss. Many times, my friends would just wait for me to find places, then check them out for themselves! There is so much to see an do on the island, even if you just head out one day with no set destination in mind.

    • I feel the same Kara. I’ve said it before and I’ll probably be saying it until we leave…I literally have mini panic attacks because I feel like we won’t have enough time to do most of what I want! Okinawa is such a rich in culture little island I just adore it!

  2. This is a fabulous post. A great research to share with people who are going to visit/move here. It goes hand in hand with Kassie’s post on Apps to use when in Okinawa.

    My absolute favorite sites are OkiClip and MapIt. I’ve recently found https://www.herenow.city/okinawa/ which I really love too! Another is http://calend-okinawa.com/ although only in japanese, there is so much on that site.

    • I totally forgot about that post from Kassie I’ll have to mention that specially when I have better internet!! I’ll have to check out herenow I haven’t heard of that one! I think I have come across calend before but I need to check it out again….thanks!!

      • Someone had contacted OkinawaHai asking about trip planning while visiting okinawa, so I linked her up with this page.

        HereNow is new, I have no idea how I stumbled upon it.

      • Thanks!! There are so many different Okinawa resources, and new ones keep popping up all the time!

  3. It BLOWS MY MIND when people say there is nothing to do here! I don’t know how I will ever fit in everything that’s already on my list- let alone all the new stuff that is going to pop up over the next few years. Naturally I’m biased when it comes to Okinawa resources, so I use the Okinawa Hai calendar A LOT! 😉 But I have to get better about getting into the facebook groups. I haven’t done that nearly enough!

    • But lets be honest….Okinawa Hai calendar is the best. I mean…the writer HAND PICKS events that she thinks readers will love! 🙂

      • Lol! It is actually a GREAT addition to Okinawa Hai, I need to add it to my post too!!

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