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The entire prefecture of Okinawa is famous for its warm climate and beaches. While Okinawa Main Island (Okinawa Honto) is not considered to have the prefecture's very best beaches (these are found on smaller islands such as Miyako), it, nevertheless, has some attractive beaches where visitors can enjoy the sun, sand and sea. See the list below for some of the island's best beaches and snorkeling spots.

The best time to go swimming at the beach in Okinawa Honto is between May and October. From December to March the air temperatures can drop to levels below 20 degrees Celsius which many people will consider too cool for swimming. Water temperatures around Okinawa Honto never drop below 20 degrees and reach about 30 degrees during the summer months.

When using the beaches, beware of strong currents that can pull you out to sea and poisonous creatures such as Habu Jellyfish, a type of box jellyfish, which are most prevalent from June to October. Signs at the beaches inform about the dangers, while some beaches have netted off swimming areas. Although stings are rare, if stung you should pour vinegar over the sting, remove any tentacles, and seek medical help as it may become life threatening.

Manza Beach

Hours: 9:00 to 17:00 (until 19:00 in Jul and Aug; until 18:00 in Sep)
Admission: Free (visitors pay 500 yen for facilities during main season)

Moon Beach

Admission: 1000 yen
Parking: 1000 yen (free from November to March)

Okuma Beach

Hours: 9:00 to 18:00 (until 17:00 November to February)
Admission: 1500 yen

Emerald Beach (Ocean Expo Park)

Swimming season: April to October
Hours: 8:30 to 19:00 (until 17:30 in October)
Admission and parking: Free

Mibaru Beach

Swimming season: late April to September
Admission: Free (use of facilities 500 yen from Jul to Sep)
Parking: 500 yen

Zampa Beach

Swimming season: April to October
Hours: 9:00 to 18:00
Admission and parking: Free (200 yen to use showers)

Sunset Beach

Swimming season: mid April to October
Hours: 9:00 to 17:30 (July and August until 18:00)
Admission and parking: Free

Snorkeling

The sea life along the shores of Okinawa Honto is not quite as colorful as around some of Okinawa's smaller islands. Nevertheless, there are a few nice snorkeling spots.

Cape Maeda

Hours: 7:00 to 19:00
Admission: Free
Parking: 100 yen per hour

Odo Kaigan

Admission and parking: Free

Getting there and around

Manza Beach

Manza Beach is connected directly with Naha by bus number 120 (100 minutes, 1420 yen from Naha Bus Terminal or 110 minutes, 1510 yen from Naha Airport; 2 buses/hour) and airport limousine bus (60 minutes, 1630 yen from Naha Bus Terminal or 75 minutes, 1730 yen from Naha Airport; every 1-2 hours). Get off at Manza Beach-mae (万座ビーチ前). By car, it takes about 50 minutes (more during rush hours) from Naha if using the expressway between Naha and Yaka IC (700 yen one way).

Moon Beach

Moon Beach is connected directly with Naha by bus number 120 (90 minutes, 1210 yen from Naha Bus Terminal, or 100 minutes, 1320 yen from Naha Airport; 2 buses/hour) and airport limousine bus (55 minutes, 1430 yen from Naha Bus Terminal or 65 minutes, 1530 yen from Naha Airport; every 1-2 hours). Get off at Moon Beach-mae (ムーンビーチ前). By car, it takes about 50 minutes (more during rush hours) from Naha if using the expressway between Naha and Ishikawa IC (650 yen one way).

Okuma Beach

Take highway bus number 111 or 117 or the Yanbaru Express from Naha to Nago Bus Terminal (80 minutes, 1650-2140 yen from Naha Bus Center; 95 minutes, 1650-2230 yen from Naha Airport; 1-2 buses/hour) and transfer to bus number 67 to Okuma Beach Iriguchi (奥間ビーチ入口, 60 minutes, 1030 yen, hourly). Note that between Naha and Nago the Yanbaru Express is cheaper than the other buses and that it stops at the Kencho Kitaguchi bus stop instead of the Naha Bus Center. By car, it takes about two hours from Naha if using the expressway between Naha and Nago (1040 yen one way).

Emerald Beach

Please see the Ocean Expo Park page for access details.

Mibaru Beach

Take bus number 50 or 51 from Naha Bus Terminal to Hyakuna Bus Terminal (百名バスターミナル, 60 minutes, 730 yen, 1-2 buses/hour), from where the beach can be reached in a 15 minute walk. By car, it takes about 40 minutes from central Naha.

Zampa Beach

Take an airport limousine bus from Naha to Royal Hotel Okinawa Zanpamisaki next to the beach (ロイヤルホテル残波岬; 75 minutes, 1430 yen from Naha Bus Terminal or 85 minutes, 1530 yen from Naha Airport; every 2 hours). Alternatively, take bus number 28 from Naha Bus Terminal to Yomitan Bus Terminal (読谷バスターミナル, 80 minutes, 1100 yen, 3-4 buses/hour) from where it is a 45 minute walk to the beach. By car it takes about 70 minutes from central Naha.

Sunset Beach

Please see the Mihama American Village page for access details.

Cape Maeda

Take bus 120 from Naha to Yamada (山田; 80 minutes, 1110 yen from Naha Bus Terminal, or 90 minutes, 1200 yen from Naha Airport; 2 buses/hour), from where Cape Maeda can be reached in a 20-30 minute walk. By car, it takes about 50 minutes (more during rush hours) from Naha if using the expressway between Naha and Ishikawa IC (650 yen one way).

Odo Kaigan

Take bus number 89 from Naha Bus Terminal to Itoman Bus Terminal (糸満バスターミナル, 60 minutes, 580 yen, departures every 10 minutes) and transfer to bus number 82. Get off at Seimei Byōin-mae (晴明病院前, 25 minutes, 440 yen, 1 bus/hour), from where the coast can be reached in a 10-15 minute walk. By car, it takes about 45 minutes from central Naha.

How to get to and around Okinawa Honto

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