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The Yanbaru region (山原) makes up the northern part of the Okinawa Main Island. Compared to the urbanized, southern part of the island, Yanbaru is significantly less developed and more rural. The region contains an abundance of subtropical forested hills and endemic wildlife. In 2016, the Yanbaru National Park was established here as the 33rd national park in Japan.

Several endangered species of wildlife exist in the region. Among them is the Yanbaru Kuina (also known as the "Okinawa Rail"), which is a small, nearly-flightless bird only found in the Yanbaru region. Efforts are being made to preserve the species, and several kuina-related attractions have been established in the area.

Most tourist attractions in the Yanbaru region are nature-related and include walking trails through the forest, observation points and small museums devoted to the local fauna and flora. Below is a list of some of the places of interest:

Hedo Misaki (Cape Hedo)

Hours: Always open
Admission: free
Closed: No closing days

Hiji Waterfall

Hours: Entry from 9:00 to 16:00 (until 15:00 from Nov to Mar)
Admission: 500 yen
Closed: during extreme weather

Daisekirinzan Park

Hours: 9:30 to 17:30 (entry until 16:30)
Admission: 1200 yen
Closed: No closing days

Gesashi Bay Mangrove Forest

Hours: Always open
Admission: free
Closed: No closing days

Yanbaru Wildlife Conservation Center

Hours: 10:00 to 16:30
Admission: Free
Closed: Mondays, national holidays (except May 4-5), June 23, New Year holidays

Okinawa Rail Ecology Center

Hours: 9:00 to 17:00
Admission: 500 yen
Closed: Wednesdays

Okuma Beach

Hours: 9:00 to 18:00 (until 17:00 November to February)
Admission for daytime visitors: 1000 yen per person, 500 yen for parking
Closed: No closed days

Getting there and around

Public transportation in the Yanbaru Region is limited to infrequent local buses along the West coast that do not serve all destinations, while buses along the more remote East coast are even more elusive. For this reason traveling by rental car is recommended.

How to get to and around Okinawa Honto

Hotels around Okinawa Island

Top rated on Okinawa Island
Budget:
    • Condominium Felicita Naha
      Budget-friendly
      Condominium Felicita Naha is situated in the centre of Naha, just 3.3 km from Tamaudun Mausoleum and 1.4 km from DFS Galleria Okinawa. The apartment, set in a building dating from 2017, is 1.5 km from Yachimun Street and 3.5 km from Sonohyan Utaki Stone Gate. This air-conditioned apartment features 1 bedroom and a bathroom equipped with a bath and free toiletries. A flat-screen TV is featured. Off-site paid public parking is available nearby. Shuri-jo Castle is 3.7 km from the apartment. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 4 km from Condominium Felicita Naha.
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    • The LANAI HOSTEL
      Budget-friendly
      In a prime location in the Naha City Centre district of Naha, The LANAI HOSTEL is located 2.1 km from Naminoue Beach, 2.4 km from Tamaudun Mausoleum and 1.4 km from DFS Galleria Okinawa. Featuring a shared lounge, the 2-star hostel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a shared bathroom. The accommodation provides a shared kitchen, and luggage storage for guests. At the hostel every room is fitted with bed linen and towels. The LANAI HOSTEL offers a sun terrace. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Yachimun Street, Sakaemachi Arcade and Tsuboya Pottery Museum. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 8 km from The LANAI HOSTEL.
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    • La Passione Boutique B&B
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring free WiFi and a terrace, La Passione is a secluded bed and breakfast in Naha. Guests can take a 10-minute walk to Naha Kokusai Dori or go to Jogaku Park, a 4-minute walk from the property. Bicycle hire is available upon reservation. All rooms have an electric kettle and a refrigerator, while some rooms are equipped with a private bathroom. A hairdryer is provided on site. Extra amenities include face tissues, cotton buds, hand soap, body soap, hair shampoo and conditioners. Guests can enjoy Western-style breakfast at La Passione. Luggage storage is available on site. Tamaudun Mausoleum is 500 meters away from La Passione, while Makishi Public Market and Yachimun Street are both a 10-minute walk away. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, a 20-minute taxi ride from the property.
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    • Y's CABIN&HOTEL Naha Kokusai Street
      Budget-friendly
      Well set in the Naha City Centre district of Naha, Y's CABIN&HOTEL Naha Kokusai Street is located 1.2 km from Naminoue Beach, 3.7 km from Tamaudun Mausoleum and 1.6 km from Yachimun Street. Among the facilities of this property are a restaurant, a 24-hour front desk and a shared lounge, along with free WiFi throughout the property. Private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. Every room comes with air conditioning and a flat-screen TV, and certain units at the capsule hotel have a safety deposit box. At Y's CABIN&HOTEL Naha Kokusai Street rooms come with bed linen and towels. The accommodation offers 2-star accommodation with a sauna. DFS Galleria Okinawa is 2.7 km from Y's CABIN&HOTEL Naha Kokusai Street, while Sonohyan Utaki Stone Gate is 4.1 km away. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 5 km from the capsule hotel.
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    • Condominium GOLF GOLF Tsuboya
      Mid-range
      Condominium GOLF GOLF Tsuboya features city views, free WiFi and free private parking, located in Naha, 2.5 km from Naminoue Beach. Accommodation is fitted with air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchenette, a TV and a private bathroom with bidet, slippers and a hairdryer. A microwave, a fridge and stovetop are also provided, as well as a kettle. An American breakfast is available daily at the aparthotel. Popular points of interest near Condominium GOLF GOLF Tsuboya include Yachimun Street, Noren Central Market and Tsuboya Pottery Museum. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 6 km from the accommodation.
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    • 美らガーナハウス壷川
      Budget-friendly
      Located in Naha, near Naminoue Beach, Manko Park and Okinawa Prefecture Government, 美らガーナハウス壷川 features free WiFi. Accommodation is fitted with air conditioning, a fully equipped kitchen, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with bath, a hairdryer and free toiletries. A microwave and fridge are also provided, as well as a kettle. Tamaudun Mausoleum is 6 km from the apartment, while Yachimun Street is 2.3 km away. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 5 km from 美らガーナハウス壷川.
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    • Hotel Collective
      Luxury
      Hotel Collective features a restaurant, seasonal outdoor swimming pool, a fitness centre and bar in Naha. This 5-star hotel offers a 24-hour front desk and a concierge service. Free WiFi is available and private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. The units come with air conditioning, a flat-screen TV with satellite channels, a fridge, a kettle, a bidet, bathrobes and a desk. At the hotel every room has bed linen and towels. Guests at Hotel Collective can enjoy a buffet breakfast. At the accommodation guests are welcome to take advantage of a sauna and a hot tub. Popular points of interest near Hotel Collective include Naminoue Beach, Yachimun Street and Shijo Hondori. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 6 km from the hotel.
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    • Grand Cabin Hotel Naha Oroku
      Mid-range
      Grand Cabin Hotel Naha Oroku is situated in Naha, within 8 km of Tamaudun Mausoleum and 2.3 km of Naha Air Base. Featuring a shared lounge, the 3-star hotel has air-conditioned rooms with free WiFi, each with a shared bathroom. Private parking is available on site. All rooms have a safety deposit box. Guests at the hotel can enjoy a continental breakfast. Staff at Grand Cabin Hotel Naha Oroku are available to provide advice at the 24-hour front desk. Yachimun Street is 5 km from the accommodation, while DFS Galleria Okinawa is 7 km from the property. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 2.3 km from Grand Cabin Hotel Naha Oroku.
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    • Villa Coast Nishimachi - Guesthouse in Okinawa
      Budget-friendly
      Located just a 7-minute drive from Naha Airport, Villa Coast Nishimachi houses self-contained accommodations with free WiFi connection. The apartment houses a shared lounge with drinks and snacks vending machines. Each room is fitted with a full kitchen with a microwave and a washing machine. All rooms have air conditioning, a working desk and a flat-screen TV. Featuring a bath, private bathroom comes with a shower, a hairdryer and free toiletries. From the apartment, a convenience store is within a 2-minute walk. There are numerous local restaurants and shops within 15 minutes walking distance around the apartment. Naminoue Beach is a 10-minute walk and Asahibashi Station is a 13-minute walk away.
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    • Hotel Torifito Naha Asahibashi
      Mid-range
      Well located in the Naha City Centre district of Naha, Hotel Torifito Naha Asahibashi is located 750 metres from Naminoue Beach, 5 km from Tamaudun Mausoleum and 2.4 km from Yachimun Street. The property is set 3.9 km from DFS Galleria Okinawa, 5 km from Sonohyan Utaki Stone Gate and 5 km from Shuri-jo Castle. Free WiFi is available and private parking can be arranged at an extra charge. The hotel will provide guests with air-conditioned rooms offering a desk, a kettle, a fridge, a safety deposit box, a flat-screen TV and a private bathroom with a bidet. At Hotel Torifito Naha Asahibashi each room is fitted with bed linen and towels. A buffet breakfast is available daily at the accommodation. Staff speak English, Japanese, Korean and Cantonese at the reception. Naha Air Base is 5 km from Hotel Torifito Naha Asahibashi, while Tsushimamaru Museum is less than 1 km away. The nearest airport is Naha Airport, 5 km from the hotel.
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