Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum

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Lately the girls & I have been visiting museums & art museums; I wasn’t sure how interested they would be but they definitely seem to be enjoying it, as am I!

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Our latest museum trip saw us heading to Naha to check out the Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum and even though I wanted nothing more than to spend the day lounging about I am so pleased we made the effort to check this place out.

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In fact I am actually kicking myself we haven’t been sooner.

I left it up to Eden which sections we wanted to visit (and pay for) and she decided we should see it all; Permanent Exhibition, Special Exhibition and the Art Museum.

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The first stop was checking out the permanent exhibitions; we were all pretty amazed by the entrance; glass floors with sea life creatures displayed below (I am pretty certain they weren’t real BUT you never know!) and pretty blue lighting.

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I actually had to tear the kids away from here and Clio asked a few times to go back and find Nemo!

The permanent exhibition was pretty interesting with nice displays and most of the information signs were also translated in English.

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There is also the option to get a free audio guide if you wish; we got them but never actually listened as too many questions were being asked and it just got a little confusing knowing where we were all up to on the audio guide!

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After about an hour wondering around here we stopped for lunch at the cafe on site (note; you can eat at the cafe without having to pay any museum entrance fee’s) the girls shared a huge plate of pasta and I enjoyed a tasty green curry.

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Refueled we hit up the special exhibition “Funeral Ceremony and Grave Tradtion of Ryukyu Islands; a memorial service held by wind and coral” unfortunately this wasn’t translated in English so we walked through pretty quick, stopping to look at things that caught our eye.

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Then it was time for the Art Museum, which I was most excited about.  A few weeks prior I took the girls to the Sakima Art Museum in Ginowan and I was totally blown away by Eden’s enthusiasm and interpretations, so I was eager to see how she would react this time.

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Apart from getting a little too close to some of the no doubt priceless pieces she once again blew me away.  I ask her questions like “what do you think this person is feeling and why?” and she really thinks about it and gives some pretty great answers.  The other thing we spend a lot of time doing is talking about different materials and techniques…which is why Eden sometimes gets a little close as she likes to “show me”.

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We were now going on 2 hours at the museum and it was well and truly cutting into nap time, I had only planned on being there an hour tops, maybe a little longer if we decided to eat, so I suggested we head home, but knew we had 2 other areas to check out…the free areas.

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We quickly headed outside to look at a couple of sculptures which lead to a big conversation of “what is it” then we headed inside to the Touch & Experience Room.

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This room is amazing and the girls got stuck in right away!  Did I mention its free? yeah thats right you do not need to pay any entrance fees whatsoever to go into this room…perfect rainy day activity!

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While it isn’t overly huge, it is very hands on/interactive and the ladies that were working in there were so friendly and really encouraged you to try things.

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Eden dressed up in traditional farmers attire, they played with musical instruments, did puzzles, played with blocks and their favorite…playing some game where you found out what things below the sea were ok to eat!

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Like the entrance to the permanent exhibition I had to once again drag them away, with the promise that we would return.

Another plus about this museum there is loads of parking! I definitely get deterred heading to new places if I know that parking is limited, especially after receiving a 15,000 Yen parking ticket a couple months a go!

Lastly, a lot of the museum you are not allowed to photograph hence lack of photo’s… so why not go visit it yourself!

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Linking up to Travel Tuesday

Travel Tuesday Bumble Bee Mum



20 responses to “Okinawa Prefectural Museum & Art Museum

    • the glass floor displays were super fun! My 2.5 year old was a little apprehensive about walking on them which was pretty funny!

  1. Oh wow! I often focus on the amazing outdoors of Okinawa, truthfully i haven’t ventured into the museums. This changes my mind for sure. Have you taken your girls to the toy museum? I haven’t been but this post made me think of it.

    • Yes, we have been to the toy museum (the one near Okuma, right?) it was fab! I really enjoyed the Sakima Art Museum in Ginowan, you can’t take photos inside so I never did a post on it, and it isn’t very big but the girls & I spent close to an hour there. They have a wonderful Battle of Okinawa exhibition.

    • I didn’t even know there was a park down there…see how observant I am!! Have you been to Minotogawa at all? there is a place there called Casa Machilda its a wooden toy play place for kids, we should totally take the girls sometime if you want?!

  2. This is great! I’m going to share it on my sister-in-law’s Facebook page simply for the free interaction room — it really does sound like the perfect rainy day activity. Your kids have the coolest mom…

    • You should tell her about the Casa Machilda place in Minnatogawa, if she hasn’t heard of it, its a wooden play place for kids (you have to pay) but its really nice environment!

    • absolutely! I also don’t think you expect kids (younger ones anyway) to be interested if you don’t take the time to explain things, ask questions and be open to having questions ask. I say this as a reminder to myself because sometimes my kids can ask hundreds of questions and I switch off, but I am definitely trying when I take them to places like this to stay tuned and encourage the question asking!

  3. The glass floor is so cool! And love that touch & experience room. And I take back my opinion that art museums are not for kids. It’s a matter of what you do to facilitate the visit! Though yeah, I would be pretty freaked out that the boys would get too close to the works. My boys are…. wild. #TravelTuesday

    • the glass floor was awesome, such an appealing exhibition thats for sure! I definitely want to return to spend more time in the touch & experience room….especially because its completely free to access that part lol

  4. This museum looks gorgeous! I’ve been to several museums in Basel during my several work trip, but have not seen a museum as beautiful as that seen in your first two pictures.

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