4 Recommended Christmas Events in Okinawa, the Southernmost Prefecture
Okinawa, which is relatively warmer than the main part of the country, is in a southern area where it doesn't snow. So instead of snow, it's standard to celebrate Christmas in a gorgeous way with illuminations and fireworks. Here are 4 recommended Christmas events to check out in Okinawa!
1. Mihama Town Resort American Village
Mihama American Village is a resort facility in Chatan, in the middle of the main island of Okinawa. The wide resort faces the beach, and is connected to restaurants, hotels, a movie theater, a live house, a Ferris wheel, and other commercial and amusement facilities. It's a popular spot where you can see, eat, and enjoy your day from morning to night. In Christmas, the area becomes decorated with illuminations, objet d'art, trees, and more, so it's completely colored with Christmas! The palm trees in the area are also illuminated, so you can enjoy a tropical Christmas atmosphere. It's fun not only to shop but also just to walk around, so please stop by!
Will be held from November 18th (Friday), 2016, to mid-January 2017
2. ISHIGAKI ISLAND Illumination
Ishigaki Island is about 400km south of the main island of Okinawa, about an hour away from Naha by plane. Ishigaki Island is surrounded by nature, including coral reefs, and it's a popular area for diving and sightseeing.
Every year, starting from late November, the area around the city hall enters the Christmas season until March by lighting a gorgeous illumination that delights locals and tourists alike. The illuminations use about 18,000 blue, yellow, and white LED lights to create motifs of dolphins and tropical fish. You can enjoy a mystical sight that will remind you of Ishigaki Island's beautiful ocean.
*Information about 2016 is unconfirmed. This information is from 2015.
3. Okinawa Zoo and Museum Christmas Fantasy Okinawa
This theme park brings together a zoo and a museum where you can learn by playing and experiencing, and they hold a Christmas event every year. This popular event turns 21 this year, and throughout the event period, the park has plenty to enjoy, including the decorations made with 1.4 million lights, various stage events, and attractions using laser beams. Also, something that's particularly loved by locals is the falling snow show done with manmade snow. It's recommended for the whole family, since you can play with it by riding on a sled, making snowmen, or enjoying other winter activities.
Event will be held between December 23rd (Friday) to December 28th (Wednesday), 2016
Tickets: Presale tickets for adults high school age and over is 1,800 JPY, 2,200 JPY for a same-day ticket. Children 4 to middle school age cost 1,000 JPY for presale tickets and 1,200 JPY for same-day tickets (all incl. tax). Children under 3 free.
4. Ocean Expo Park
Ocean Expo Park is a national park that has many popular sightseeing spots, including a beautiful beach, an aquarium, a botanical garden, and a planetarium. During the Christmas season, the entire area is dressed up with gorgeous illuminations. There are many fun plans in place as well, such as the staff dressing up as Santa during the cute dolphin shows at the aquarium.
Event will be held between December 1st (Thursday) and December 25th (Sunday), 2016
Please spend a great Christmas 2016 in Okinawa with your family, friends, and loved ones!
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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