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Okinawa Family-friendly activities

Our most recommended Okinawa Family-friendly activities

Iriomote Island: Kayaking and Canyoning Tour

1. Iriomote Island: Kayaking and Canyoning Tour

Start by kayaking down a peaceful river surrounded by mangroves. See various forms of plant and animal life which are practically undisturbed by humans. Finish up at a picturesque waterfall before taking some time for lunch, where you can choose a local restaurant to sample local food at your own expense. Next, visit the Ōmija river where you will start the canyoning portion of the tour. Jump into the refreshing waters from the adjacent rock platforms and slide down the slide-like parts of the river for an exciting and thrilling way to enjoy the natural beauty of Iriomote Island. Sup is for ages 12 and up. 3-11 year olds should choose canoeing.

Okinawa: Mangrove Kayaking Tour

2. Okinawa: Mangrove Kayaking Tour

Have fun kayaking amongst the mangroves on the Hija River. Appreciate the natural beauty and spot different plants and creatures living here in the rare ecosystem. As the river is calm, the kayak tour can be enjoyed by the whole family and all experience levels. The Hija River is just a few minutes drive from Route 58 in Kadena Town on Okinawa Island. Check in with the local partner, change into your swimsuit, and receive kayak instructions. Your guide will teach you how to paddle and introduce you to the living creatures you may encounter on the tour. Start kayaking through the mangroves. After listening to the guide's instructions, enjoy exploring the mangroves on your kayak as you look at the plants, rare birds, and small living creatures living in this unique environment for around 1 hour.  After the tour you can change at the shop.

Ishigaki Island: 2-Hour Miyara River Kayaking Tour

3. Ishigaki Island: 2-Hour Miyara River Kayaking Tour

Explore the lush mangrove forests of the Miyara River on this 2-hour kayaking trip. Kayak up and down the Miyara River and see for yourself why the forest has been designated a national monument. All ages and skill levels will enjoy this tranquil paddle through the beautiful natural landscapes on Ishigaki Island. Your instructor will give you the freedom to explore while ensuring your group stays safe.

From Ishigaki: Hamajima and Taketomi Island Snorkel Trip

4. From Ishigaki: Hamajima and Taketomi Island Snorkel Trip

Enjoy a day trip from Ishigaki Port. Go snorkeling at Hamajima, and be amazed by the marine life below the surface. After that, board the ferry to Taketomi Island and enjoy some time at your leisure. Meet your guide at the Ishigaki Port and head for Hamajima, known as Phantom Island because the island only appears when the tide is low. Take a tour and admire the scenery and emerald blue ocean. Move on to one of Okinawa's best snorkeling spots, located right next to the island. Enjoy instruction from your guide as you swim or snorkel amongst the vibrant marine life. Let them use a waterproof camera to capture you enjoying your experience. Head back to Ishigaki Port before boarding the ferry to Taketomi Island with a round-trip ticket. Enjoy this beautiful place with its traditional houses and gorgeous beaches at your leisure, then sail back to Ishigaki at a time of your choice.

Iriomote Island: 3-Hour Guided Kayaking and Caving Tour

5. Iriomote Island: 3-Hour Guided Kayaking and Caving Tour

Go off the beaten path during this guided tour of the UNESCO Heritage Site Iriomote Island. 90% of this island is untouched by humans, making this an ideal opportunity to immerse yourself in nature. Start your tour kayaking down the mangrove jungle river, admiring lush plants and even a waterfall as you paddle along. Next visit the natural limestone caves, formed by water over hundreds of years. Climb the limestone walls and inspect narrow tunnels as you explore the caves alongside your guide. Sup is for ages 12 and up. 3-11 year olds should choose canoeing.

Tomigusuku: DMM Kariyushi Aquarium Admission

6. Tomigusuku: DMM Kariyushi Aquarium Admission

Explore the DMM Kariyushi Aquarium which combines the latest visual technology and spatial representation with several marine plants and animal species. Discover aquatic exhibits including “Okinawa’s Clear Ocean”, “Rich Rainforests Covering Islands”, and “Nature Formed by Subtropical Environments” as you see a variety of native and non-native marine life. Admire visual technology that helps to achieve a realistic aquatic experience. See live specimens of jellyfish, turtles, tropical fish, frogs, and chameleons. Stroll through open and spacious visual replications of seasons, time, and the beauty of nature. Interact with a variety of flora and fauna which are native to the island of Okinawa at some of the exhibits.

Ishigaki Island: SUP or Kayaking experience at Kabira Bay

7. Ishigaki Island: SUP or Kayaking experience at Kabira Bay

Discover one of the most picturesque beaches in Japan by kayak or SUP with a guide in the unique emerald waters of Kabira Bay. Start by meeting your guide at the Ishigaki port. After your arrival at the field, receive instructions on how to use the SUP or Kayak for around 15 minutes. Enjoy 1 hour to explore the surroundings and to test your aquatic skills. Whether you are an expert or beginner, the instructor and safety equipment will be on hand to support you. Get your picture taken with a waterproof camera to remember the experience.

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What people are saying about Okinawa

The tour guide, a female whose name I don't remember, was great. I don't speak Japanase so she explained how the tour worked while on the bus, because her English is limited. The destinations have signs in English so I got by on my own just fine. This is not a fully guided tour, meaning; the tour guide doesn't lead you throughout the locations, every one sets off on their own. She said the most important information to me in English before getting off the bus, so I knew when and where to be back. The biggest part of this tour is the aquarium. I found the 3 hours were plenty of time to see the highlights of the aquarium and have lunch. The food at the aquarium isn't great, before the aquarium we stopped by a beach that had shops and I wish I had eaten there instead because it had better options, so keep that in mind. The bus was comfortable and had wifi. Later in the tour there were places that I wasn't interested in, it was fine to stay in the bus, as others guests besides myself did.

the best tour to explore the UNESCO sites Iriomote island in half day! We spent time cruising the mangrove forest with kayak and stand up paddle and watch the waterfall and the 3 natural limestone cave. we were lucky to see the endangered Crested serpent eagle in the beginning of the tour! The guide Tomo kun was so knowledgeable about all the mangroves, flowers and animals of the island, he was also helpful and nice tour guiding with family with small child. Also he took the most beautiful pictures we couldn’t take with our phones making our day memorable one Definitely worth visiting the island if you are into the beauty of the nature and animals!

Kayaking was fun and the guide was very friendly, helpful and able to communicate in English well. Despite being the only non-Japanese speaker the guide made sure to explain everything during the tour in English and Japanese

Fun guides and very nice stretch of river to kayak on.