Our children are the most important people in our lives, and their happiness is our number one priority all the time. You wouldn’t want them to miss out on the fun when on holiday, and we’ve put together the best things to do in Okinawa with kids to provide excitement for the whole family. Put a smile on your children’s faces, and the entire family at large, with the many fun things to do in Okinawa with kids. These include watching huge whale sharks, grown to extraordinary lengths of up to 8.8 m, and manta rays from the Kuroshio sea from behind a 22.5 m wide by 8.2 m high acrylic screen!
Watersports like sunset SUPs and snorkeling are also among the best things to do in Okinawa with kids, with the prefecture also home to the Chatan sea park that the family is sure to love as well. Spend time in strange blue caves, riding ATVs in pineapple parks, and exploring jungles under the cover of breathtaking constellations at night. There are also cultural handicrafts and experiences for the kids to try out, including Shisa lion making, watching folk performances and poetry, glass making, and so much more!
Bring the family along for the best time ever, exploring the many awesome things to do in Okinawa with kids!
1. Bus tours of giant whale sharks and a pineapple park
Natural light piercing through 10 million liters of blue water to illuminate mammoth whale sharks, Okinawa Churaumi aquarium is perfect for bus tours! Consider Nago Pineapple park as well!
2. Explore glowing blue caves and a glorious cape
A magnificent coastline at Cape Maeda with grand views of the ocean and sparkling blue caves in Onna village ensure world-class snorkeling in Okinawa. Swim with green turtles and manta rays!
3. Sea fishing gateways with enormous mackerels
Show the kids where our food comes from and create lifelong memories fishing for amberjacks in Chatan, Onna, and Iriomote. Reel in tuna and giant mackerels for your social media selfies!
4. Ride into the sunset at Ishigaki island
Storybook endings become a reality in Ishigaki and Iriomote islands, where you can enjoy twilight canoeing into a seascape light by the fading yellow of a disappearing sun. Transparent kayaking is just as magical!
5. Cuddle up with family in an Okinawa banana boat
What goes well with a beautiful blue ocean and fairytale scenery? Why, of course, a banana boat ride for the whole family! The turquoise waves licking at your feet, you’ll have a ton of fun!
6. Hang out with mermaids at Onna village
In Onna, mermaids are not a figment of the imagination; they are real and warm creatures with a penchant for photography. Spend time with beautiful mermaids, and let the kids take pictures for proof to their friends!
7. Play in waterfalls and ziplines in Yanbaru
Touched by overwhelming nature and clear streams, Yanbaru and Iriomote are some of the few places to experience treats of waterfall climbing, natural sliders, overwater ziplining, and canyoning!
8. Okinawa ATV tours: Explore incredible landscapes in style
Across Nago, Itoman, Iriomote, and Ishigaki, buggy tours are available featuring courses across large farms, beautiful jungles, and pineapple villages. Children can ride with their parents for an amazing thrill in nature!
9. Uncover geological mysteries in Miyakojima
Amazing limestone caves such as Miyakojima's pumpkin cave that offers refreshing exploration. Wade under stalactites, with headlamps shinning the way, to uncover old mysteries!
10. A tasty tour for the entire family
The whole family can enjoy a day out in Nago and Miyakojima while chilling to the aroma of a beach barbecue. Delicious seafood, beef, exotic pineapples, and more are on the menu!
11. Ishigaki Tree climbing: Follow adventure up a tree
Sit on a branch and stare out into the sea, or find a scenic sleeping spot on a hammock beside the quiet gushes of seawater playing a game of tag with the sand. Find out why monkeys love trees so much!
12. Keep in shape with island strolls
An adventure in the outdoors is a great fitness plan for the family. Trek across clear streams, dreamy forests, and scenic mountain trails as you bump into members of the diverse ecosystem in Iriomote, Ishigaki, and Yanbaru!
13. Okinawa cosplay photoshoots: Become a mermaid, or samurai, for the day
Available in all sizes for children and adults alike, mermaid cosplays on a beautiful beach is a nice way to spend an afternoon. You can also try out kimono dress-ups in Naha, with options for ninja and samurai armor, complete with katanas!
14. Fun with culture: Ishigaki folk songs and dance
Ishigaki island has a rich folk heritage. Get treated to some of that inspiring culture involving customary Yaeyama folk songs, popular during farming and festivals, and traditional performances, often encompassing beautiful poetry!
15. Stop and smell the roses in Okinawa city
Home to adorable goats, hamsters, and inquisitive capybara, Okinawa city’s botanical garden offers the family a refreshing experience in palm forests and flower gardens. There are more than 1300 tropical plant varieties for guests to explore!
16. Play out on the open sea at Chatan Sea park
Inflated rubber molds into a beautiful playground, minutes away from the Chatan shoreline. The pontoon park entails free diving, SUP cycling, clear water kayaking, sliders, and boat fishing!
17. Embracing Japanese mythology with Shisa lion crafting
The Shisa lion is believed to keep evil away or hold the good in depending on placements around the house. Making this important Ryukyuan artifact is always an interesting affair!
18. Make the world beautiful, one T-shirt at a time
Colors are the essence of life, making the mundane gorgeous and uplifting the boring into excitement. Showcase your painting skills with Okinawa dyeing experiences entailing eco-bags, book covers, T-shirts, and more!
19. Fun with art: Sandblasting and glass workshops
From gorgeous photo frames to lovely Ryukyu glass utensils and colorful chandeliers, glass workshops and sandblasting experiences are a great way to fuel creativity and make beautiful items to commemorate the holiday!
20. Ox-cart rides in blissful islands
How was life like in the medieval age? Find out on ox cart strolls around the beautiful Okinawa islands of Ishigaki and Iriomote, the latter home the only cat of its kind!
21. Make beautiful shellfish and other accessories
Break away from technology-addictions, with some quality family bonding over jewelry and other accessory making. Have fun with gorgeous pearls and kimono makeovers, including tiny umbrellas and makeup!
22. Red potatoes and candy making in Naha
Learning to cook is an important part of growing up. You and the children have the opportunity to craft exotic dishes like soba noodles, mochi, red potatoes, pork, candy, and much more with Okinawa cooking lessons!
23. Cast your dreams on a shooting star
Okinawa enjoys a splendid share of the Milky Way, and the stars are magical this time of year. Hold hands in the beautiful moonlight and enjoy strolls under a picture-perfect sky!
24. Okinawa Jungle Night Tours
When the sun goes down, the friendly and beautiful night critters of Iriomote wake to scavenge food. Be sure to also catch the beautiful sunset and lightning bugs in Onna village!
Frequently asked questions
QWhat activities are good for families visiting Okinawa?
AA beautiful coastline and serene islands ensure the things to do in Okinawa with kids are endless. Families with children should consider:
• BBQ outings
• Churaumi Aquarium bus tours
• Nago Pineapple park visits
• Cosplay photoshoots
• Shisa lion crafting
• Mermaid adventures
QWhy is Okinawa so popular? What makes it famous?
AOkinawa is especially famous for its top-notch scuba diving, watersports, and beautiful islands such as Ishigaki and Iriomote. It also steals spotlights with its impressive theme parks and Okinawa Churaumi aquarium, which was the largest in the world up until 2005.
QAre there any good things to do in Okinawa at night?
ASub-tropical jungle expeditions and starry sky tours are excellent things to do in Okinawa with kids at night. The family is sure to appreciate the unique nature, and the streaming comets and twinkling stars, among many other delights, exclusive to the darkness.
QWhat family-friendly, outdoor activities are available in Okinawa?
AHave fun as a family with tours in unique blue caves and rides on banana boats. More adventures entail:
• Ishigaki Island snorkeling
• Kuroshio sea fishing
• Nago ATV tours
• Iriomote Ox cart rides in paradises of nature
• Canyoning in Yanbaru
• Limestone Caving tours
• Botanical Garden strolls
QWhat transport options are available for the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium?
AFrom the airport in Naha, you can get a direct bus to the Okinawa Churaumi Aquarium, which takes approximately 1.5 hours. The American village, Okinawa world, Manzamo, Kouri Island, and Nago Pineapple park are great places to visit as well when in Okinawa!