Top 20 Things To Do In Naha, Okinawa, Japan - Updated 2024

things to do in naha
| 9 min read

Nesting in the East China Sea, Okinawa is a lovely island in Japan with breathtaking beaches, fascinating attractions, and rich culture and heritage. While on the other hand, Naha is a city in the Okinawa Prefecture and its capital. From shopping for local products, visiting shrines, sightseeing, and museum visits, there are lots of things to do and places to visit on this vibrant Japanese island. In addition to hotels and resorts, there are also homey Airbnb vacation rentals available. Here, you can check out the last remaining Ryukyuan fortresses of the Gusuku era. If you want to learn more about the island’s heritage and culture, be sure to drop by the Okinawa Prefectural Museum. For fantastic shops and exquisite dining options, you may head over to Kokusai Street. For a more in-depth guide, here is a list of things to do in Naha, Okinawa, Japan.

1. Enjoy some peace at Fukushūen Garden

Editor's Note: Photo taken from the establishment's official social account

Fukushūen Garden is a traditional Chinese garden perfect for visitors seeking a peaceful oasis. It was built in 1992 to commemorate the 10th anniversary between Naha and its sister city Fuzhou in China. Located in the city center, Fukushūen Garden is easy to access.

The garden features a central pond, stone lanterns, and a Chinese-style pavilion where visitors can view the entire garden. The garden’s meticulously maintained landscape showcases the natural beauty of Japan, including cherry blossom trees, maples, and azaleas that bloom in vibrant colors throughout the year.

Fukushūen Garden

Address: 2 Chome-29-19 Kume, Naha, Okinawa 900-0033, Japan

Website: Fukushūen Garden

Opening hours: 9am - 9pm (daily - closed on Sat)

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2. Book a unique go-karting tour (from USD 79.0)

The Official Street Go-Kart Tour in Okinawa is a thrilling experience that offers visitors a unique way to explore the city of Naha. Participants dress up in their favorite superhero or cartoon character costumes and drive street-legal go-karts through the city’s busy streets. The tour includes a guide who leads the group through the most iconic landmarks of Naha, such as the Shuri Castle, Senagajima Island, and Kokusai Street while riding in style and having fun.

With different departure times throughout the day, this activity can be flexible to your travel itinerary.

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Official Street Go-Kart Tour - Okinawa Shop

Duration: 2 to 3 hours

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3. Stroll along the golden sands of Naminoue Beach

Naminoue Beach
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user 663highland used under CC BY 2.5

If you are a big lover of the sea, you will surely fall in love with the breathtaking paradise of Naminoue Beach in the heart of Naha. Crystal clear waters and fine white sands await tourists in Naminoue Beach. It has become a melting pot of tourists and locals in dire need of a relaxing time away from the routinary city life. Not to mention, Naminoue Beach has lots of excellent restaurants and eateries nearby as well as laid back cafes, local shops, souvenir stores, and other charming business establishments. Make memories with your family as you swim to your heart’s content and build sandcastles in this beautiful tourist attraction in Naha.

Naminoue Beach

Address: 1 Chome-25 Wakasa, Naha, Okinawa 900-0031, Japan

Website: Naminoue Beach

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4. Get tranquil clifftop views from Naminoue Shrine

Naminoue Shrine
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Rickard Törnblad used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Located on top of a cliff, Namonoue Shrine is one of the best places to visit in Naha, Okinawa. In ancient times, people come to this sacred landmark to pray for bountiful fishing, fertile lands, and a fruitful year, in general. In Naminoue Shrine, you will see the Place of Remembrance which is a fascinating prayer site with overlooking views of the breathtaking sea. Imagine a peaceful and quiet time with the relaxing coastal area ambiance, you will surely have your peace of mind in Naminoue Shrine. Make friends with locals and try to learn as much information about the culture and the heritage of Naha in this sacred shrine.

Naminoue Shrine

Address: 1 Chome-25-11 Wakasa, Naha, Okinawa 900-0031, Japan

Website: Naminoue Shrine

Opening hours: 10am - 5pm (daily)

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5. Visit the famous cherry blossom viewing spot of Yogi Park

Yogi Park Naha
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user 663highland used under CC BY 2.5

Japan surely has lots of gorgeous and peaceful natural parks throughout the country, and Naha has its fair share of lovely ones too. In Naha nests the stunning Yogi Park which is a fantastic place to visit when you need some peace and quiet. It is a vast park adorned by marvelous Cherry Blossoms and lush greens. There are benches in the park, where you can stop for a while to relax and appreciate the place. Not to mention, it has a locomotive on display and play equipment for the kids and kids at heart. It is also the venue for the annual Cherry Blossom Festival in Naha.

Yogi Park

Address: 1 Chome-1-1 Yorimiya, Naha, Okinawa 902-0076, Japan

Website: Yogi Park

Opening hours: 24 hours (daily)

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6. Shop till you drop in Kokusaidori Street

Kokusaidori Street
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user 663highland used under CC BY 2.5

If you want to experience the shopping, the eats, and other well-visited business establishments in Naha, the best thing to do is to head over Kokisaidori Street. It is a bustling street with lots of excellent restaurants, laid back cafes, fantastic retail stores, spas, salons, and other luxurious establishments. Plus, it is located just in the heart of Naha where transportation vehicles are within a short distance such as Naha Bus Terminal and Makishi Station. Enjoy the food, the shopping, and the crowd in Kokusaidori Street when you visit Okinawa.

Kokusaidori Street

Address: Naha, Okinawa, Japan

Traveler's tips

Good Tip Good Tip Good Tip

📍 Naha Kokusai Dori Shopping Street, Okinawa, Japan.

Enjoy a gastronomical journey at Naha Kokusai Dori Shopping Street, the street food paradise for outdoor dining in Okinawa, Japan. Sample scrumptious local delights such as unagi don (grilled eel on rice), tempura made with local vegetables and rafute (a meat dish in sweet savoury sauce).

Local street chefs love to display their culinary skills with fiery passion. Most stalls will have a cosy corner for al fresco dining. All you have to do is find some chairs to watch the show and enjoy the meal.

If you're looking for affordable and oh-so-delicious street food, this is the place to be! This always-bustling street celebrates the essence of Okinawa's rich culture and diverse flavours.

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7. Pick up unique Okinawan produce at Heiwa Dori Shopping Street

Heiwa Dori Shopping Street
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user DVMG used under CC BY 3.0

Enjoy an authentic Japanese shopping experience in Heiwa Dori Shopping Street. It boasts of excellent retail stores selling Japanese clothing, accessories, and stuff, and lovely eateries with delicious comfort food. It is considered one of Okinawa’s busiest shopping districts. A lot of people come here to immerse themselves in the culture and to gorge on mouthwatering Japanese food. Plus, you should know that bargaining is a popular part of Okinawa’s culture, so, if you are naturally a frugal person, this is the place for you. You might bag so many finds without breaking your bank account, in Heiwa Dori Shopping Street.

Heiwa Dori Shopping Street

Address: 3 Chome-5-7 Makishi, Naha, Okinawa 900-0013, Japan

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8. Sample the seafood catch of the day at First Makishi Public Market

Naha Makishi-Public-Market
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user https://www.flick... used under CC BY 2.0

Another delightful place you should visit while sightseeing in Naha is the First Makishi Public Market. It is a bustling public market where you can score bargain finds such as Japanese clothing, lovely accessories, artisans work, fresh produce, delicious food, and basically everything you need in your daily life. It is very popular with tourists as it is a big part of the city’s culture. The ground floor of the First Makishi Public Market is mostly a wet market where you can purchase fresh seafood and popular Okinawan delicacies.

First Makishi Public Market

Address: 2 Chome-10-1 Matsuo, Naha, Okinawa 900-0014, Japan

Website: First Makishi Public Market

Opening hours: 8am - 9pm (daily)

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9. Indulge your yakitori cravings at Kokusai Street Food Village

Kokusai street
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user LudwigSK used under CC BY-SA 4.0

If you are done with the sights and the sounds of Naha and now wondering what to do, you should immerse yourself in its delicious eats. If you like the idea, you should start preparing yourself to head over to the fantastic Kokusai Street Food Village. This place is a small but lovely district with lots of independent eateries. You have to know that it can be crowded sometimes. So, the key is, don’t visit during rush hours. Other than that, this place is an absolute paradise for food lovers. You can have as many Takoyaki, Yakisoba, Yakitori, Imagayawaki, and other popular Japanese street food in Kokusai Street Food Village.

Kokusai Street Food Village

Address: 3 Chome-11-17 Makishi, Naha, Okinawa 900-0013, Japan

Website: Kokusai Street Food Village

Opening hours: 11am - 2am (daily)

Traveler's tips

Good Tip

Fried rice on the streets of Naha, Okinawa. The humblest of dishes yet the most satisfying.

How do you judge the culinary skills of a chef? Order fried rice and taste the flavours of Japan in every morsel. Happy upcoming Fried Rice Day!

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10. Browse elegant Japanese pottery at Tsuboya Yachimun Street

Tsuboya Yachimun Street
Source: Photo by Flickr user Hajime NAKANO used under CC BY 2.0

Japan is not only a fascinating country with marvelous landmarks, beautiful beaches, relaxing zen vibes, mouthwatering cuisines, and fantastic nightlife, but it is also a country rich in culture and heritage. One interesting part of Japanese culture is pottery. There are lots of local shops in Japan that feature and offers artisans’ work like lovely pots. If you are in Naha for a vacation, and you want to score some elegant pots, you should visit Tsuboya Yachimun Street. It is filled with lots of Artisans work from pottery, sculptures, furniture, and other home decors. Not to mention, the place is filled with excellent restaurants nearby and it has a relaxing, nostalgic vibe.

Tsuboya Yachimun Street

Address: 1 Chome-16 Tsuboya, Naha, Okinawa 902-0065, Japan

Website: Tsuboya Yachimun Street

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11. Catch a film at the vibrant Sakurazaka Theatre

Sakurazaka Theater, Naha
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Kugel used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

Not only is Naha a delightful place for sightseeing and restaurant hopping, but it is also a place with a vibrant art scene. If you want to immerse yourself in this aspect of Naha’s culture and heritage, you should visit Sakurazaka Theatre and watch a beautiful local film. This a modern theatre with an authentic Japanese interior and a relaxing ambiance. It features lots of fantastic movies made and produced by Japanese filmmakers as well as some movies from Western countries. Not to mention, it also has a venue for musical arts and other enthusiastic live performances. Check out their website for a list of events that you might be interested in.

Sakurazaka Theatre

Address: 3 Chome-6-10 Makishi, Naha, Okinawa 900-0013, Japan

Website: Sakurazaka Theatre

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12. Tour the striking Shuri Castle

Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user CEphoto, Uwe Aranas used under CC BY-SA 3.0

One of the many marvelous landmarks in Okinawa that you should not miss when you visit the island is the majestic Shuri Castle in Shurikinjocho, Naha. It was a beautiful site which used to be the palace of the Ryukyu kingdom. It has witnessed the war era of Okinawa and was neglected after it. After the war, Shuri Castle was turned into a university campus. Up to the present time, its beauty never fails to mesmerize tourists. A lot of them come here to witness this historic landmark that has survived through time.

Shuri Castle

Address: 1 Chome-2 Shurikinjocho, Naha, Okinawa 903-0815, Japan

Website: Shuri Castle

Opening hours: 8am - 8:30pm (daily)

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13. Visit the resting places of ancient kings at Tamaudun

Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user [Unknown] used under PUBLIC DOMAIN

A third of three royal mausoleums of the Ryukyu Kingdom, Tamaudun is a remarkable landmark in Okinawa, which houses the resting places of ancient kings. It was established in the year 1951 during the rule of King Sho Shin. It got its inspiration from the Shujori Castle. Primarily made of stones, this fascinating landmark has survived the test of time. It is considered one of the most remarkable World Heritage Site in Okinawa.


Address: Japan, 〒903-0815 Okinawa, Naha, Shurikinjocho, 1

Website: Tamaudun

Opening hours: 9am - 6pm (daily)

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14. Stroll along the Shuri Kinjo-cho Stone Paved Path

Shuri Castle Park
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user そらみみ used under CC BY-SA 4.0

The Shuri Kinjo-Cho Stone Paved Path is located close to the Shuri Castle Park, on its southern side. The remarkable pathway was constructed during the Ryukyu Kingdom age. The place is of great significance to the culture and history of Okinawa as it survived the war and modern times. On the record, it has been picked as one of the “100 best roads in Japan”. This place is not a charming tourist destination but locals love coming here for the fancy restaurants and fantastic shops.

Shuri Kinjo-cho Stone Paved Path

Address 903-0815 2-35 Kinjo-cho Naha Okinawa Dummy address

Website: Shuri Kinjo-cho Stone Paved Path

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15. Make a wish at the sacred Great Akagi Tree

Akagi-jinja (Fujimi) sekihi
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Saigen Jiro used under CC0

The great Agaki trees are considered sacred trees in Okinawa. They stand tall in Uchikanagusukutachi, Shuri Kinjo. In total, there are six Agaki trees in the area that are believed to have survived 200 years, including the war era. Local stories believe that before the war, there were similar towering Agaki trees in the Shuri Castle and the area that surrounds it. Because of its age and the fact that these remaining Agaki trees have survived the flames of the war, they are believed to be divine. So, when you visit Uchikanagusukutachi, be sure to say a few prayers of wishes to the divine Agaki trees.

Great Akagi Tree

Address: Uchikanagusukutachi, Shuri Kinjo

Website: Great Akagi Tree

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16. Brunch on fresh sashimi at Tomari Fish Market

Fish market
Source: Photo by Flickr user Anna & Michal used under CC BY 2.0

Do you have a certain love for Japanese food since birth or you have simply developed an acquired taste for it? Whatever the case is, Tomari Fish Market is a must-visit place for you. It is a paradise for Japanese food lovers. It offers lots of fresh fish products as well as other seafood Japanese delicacies. From fresh tuna to lobster, salmon, scallop to unagi, squid, and many more, you will surely bag home all your favorites in Tomari Fish Market.

Tomari Fish Market

Address: Japan, 〒900-0001 Okinawa, Naha, 1, 那覇市港町1丁目1−18

Website: Tomari Fish Market

Opening hours: 6am - 6pm (daily)

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17. Explore the scenic shrine of Okinogu

shrine of Okinogu
Source: Photo by Flickr user Okinawa Steve used under CC BY-SA 2.0

Another marvelous landmark that you have to visit during your Okinawa escapade is the charming shrine of Okinohu in Onoyamacho. It stands on an elevated area that boasts of picturesque views of the area’s lush greeneries and the overlooking downtown. Okinogu Shrine is one of the eight shrines in Ryukyu. When you visit the shrine, be sure to offer your prayers and wishes. You can also take lots of souvenir photos in Okinogu Shrine.

shrine of Okinogu

Address: 44 Onoyamacho, Naha, Okinawa 900-0026, Japan

Website: shrine of Okinogu

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18. Observe local birdlife at the Manko Waterbird and Wetland Center

Manko Waterbird and Wetland Center
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Ray_go used under CC BY-SA 3.0

If you want to reconnect with nature as well as witness fascinating birds in their natural habitat, you should visit Manko Waterbird and Wetland Center. It is surrounded by beautiful lush greeneries and wetland. In the winter season, there are lots of migratory birds that come to this place to find shelter. The Manko Waterbird and Wetland Center is not only an excellent place to relax and enjoy nature but it is also a fantastic place to practice your photography skills.

Manko Waterbird and Wetland Center

Address: 982 Tomigusuku, Okinawa 901-0241, Japan

Website: Manko Waterbird and Wetland Center

Opening hours: Tues - Sun: 9am - 5pm; (closed on Mon)

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19. Shop for luxury goods duty-free at T Galleria Okinawa

T Galleria Okinawa
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user そらみみ used under CC BY-SA 4.0

It is a known fact that a huge fraction of the world has duty free stores in it. Whether in the United States, Europe, and even in Asia, there are lots of duty-free stores across the globe. Same goes in Naha. If you feel the need to buy luxury goods or souvenir products to gift to your family or friends, drop by Omoromachi and score some luxurious finds from expensive perfumes and makeup to premium alcoholic beverages and top-notch chocolates.

duty-free at T Galleria Okinawa

Address: 4 Chome-1 Omoromachi, Naha, Okinawa 904-0014, Japan

Website: Duty-free at T Galleria Okinawa

Opening hours: Sun - Thu: 9am - 9pm; Fri - Sat: 9am - 10pm

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20. Enjoy afternoon tea at the oceanfront cafes along Umikaji Terrace Senagajima

Umikaji Terrace Senagajima
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user Kugel~commonswiki used under CC BY-SA 4.0

Enjoy the relaxing coastal vibes, the picturesque views, and the beautiful interiors of Umikaji Terrace Senagajima. Not to mention, this place serves quality tea and mouthwatering food. It is a fantastic place to pause for a while and just enjoy the Okinawa vibe. Visit this place with your friends and share a wonderful dining experience, and make lasting memories. Plus, don’t forget to take as many souvenir photos as you can while in Umikaji Terrace Senagajima.

Umikaji Terrace Senagajima

Address: 174番地6 Senaga, Tomigusuku, Okinawa 901-0233, Japan

Website: Umikaji Terrace Senagajima

Opening hours: 10am - 10pm (daily)

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Majestic Naha

Naha Okinawa Japan
Source: Photo by Wikimedia Commons user CEphoto, Uwe Aranas used under CC BY-SA 3.0

Naha is the capital of Okinawa Prefecture in the fascinating island of Okinawa. It features breathtaking beaches, marvelous landmarks, interesting local stores, and a lot more. It is a fantastic tourist destination that has so much in store for tourists. If you are planning to visit this side of Japan any time soon, use this list of the best things to do on the island as your guide when planning your vacation. May you have a fantastic Naha adventure ahead.

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Frequently asked questions about things to do in Naha, Okinawa, Japan

1. What are the most popular things to do in Naha with kids?

Some of the best things to do in Naha with kids include playing on the golden sands of Naminoue Beach and using the play equipment at Yogi Park. The latter is also the venue for the annual Cherry Blossom Festival, which is a real treat for tourists of all ages.

2. What are some cheap things to do in Naha?

If you want to stick to your budget, some cheap things to do in Naha include hopping on a go-kart tour through the city’s busy streets, browsing the elegant Japanese pottery at Tsuboya Yachimun Street, strolling along the Shuri Kinjo-cho Stone Paved Path, and observing local birdlife at the Manko Waterbird and Wetland Center.

Any must-sees we missed? Tell us about them in the comments section or write a post here to help out fellow travelers!
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Nicole, a writer and traveler, also identifies herself as a free spirit with a wild heart. She is dedicated to telling authentic stories in a relatable manner. Nicole also enjoys exploring new,...Read more

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