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Yaeyama IslandsThe Islands of Okinawa

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Yaeyama Islands MAP

Ishigaki Island Taketomi Island Kohama Island Kayama Island Kuro Island Aragusuku Island (Kamiji) Aragusuku Island (Shimoji) Iriomote Island Yubu Island Hatoma Island Hateruma Island Yonaguni Island

Ishigaki Island Taketomi Island Kohama Island Kayama Island Kuro Island Aragusuku Island (Kamiji) Aragusuku Island (Shimoji) Iriomote Island Yubu Island Hatoma Island Hateruma Island Yonaguni Island
Ishigaki Island

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Situated 430 km to the southwest of Okinawa, Ishigaki Island is the third largest island in Okinawa Prefecture and just a 50-minute flight away from Naha. A rental car or taxi hire is a must when getting out to see the sights and sounds, as some distance and mountain roads are involved.
Ishigaki Island is known for its agricultural produce, including sugar cane and pineapple, and colorful, unique local...

Taketomi Island

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Taketomi Island is a low-lying island formed atop a coral reef located about 10 minutes by boat from Ishigaki Port. Boats depart for Taketomi Island every 30 minutes, making the island easily accessible to visitors. The island has just about everything that outsiders envision as Okinawa, including traditional homes with red-tiled roofs, star sand, and carts drawn by water buffaloes. In 1987 the island...

Kohama Island

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Located approximately 17 km southwest of Ishigaki, Kohama Island enjoys a relatively flat topography, and has garnered its popularity thanks to television drama ""Chura-san."" While there are many resort hotels, the island retains a tranquil atmosphere with soothing scenery that includes rolling sugar cane fields as well as ranches. Places of interest for sightseeing are best visited by car, motorcycle,...

Kayama Island

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Kayama Island is an uninhabited, tropical and flat island located 2 km to the northwest of Kohama Island. You can visit the island as part of an optional tour organized by Hotel Miyahara on Ishigaki Island. The waters surrounding the island are treasure trove of coral reefs and tropical sea life, providing excellent snorkeling and diving opportunities. The island has a rather nice rest house, but the...

Kuro Island

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Kuro Island is also known as ""Heart Island"" because it appears to be shaped like a heart when viewed from the air. Here, the cattle outnumber the local population by a wide margin, as most of the island outside its five villages is pasture land where Ishigaki-gyu and Matsuzaka-gyu cattle brands are raised and sent back to the mainland. The island's lively Cow Festival held every February attracts a...

Aragusuku Island (Kamiji)

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Aragusuku Island is situated 4 km to the west of Kuro Island and it consists of two islands called Kamiji and Shimoji. Both islands can be reached from one another on foot during low tide and for this reason they are called Panari or Panari Island, which literally means ""separate island."" There is no regular ferry service to Aragusuku Island, but Kamiji Island has a small village and is known its...

Aragusuku Island (Shimoji)

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Aragusuku Island is situated 4 km to the west of Kuro Island and it consists of two islands called Kamiji and Shimoji. Both islands can be reached from one another on foot during low tide and for this reason they are called Panari or Panari Island, which literally means ""separate island."" There is no regular ferry service to Aragusuku Island and since the village on Shimoji was closed in 1963 the...

Iriomote Island

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Iriomote Island is the second largest island in Okinawa Prefecture. The island has garnered a reputation as the Galapagos of the East as nearly 90% of the island is covered by subtropical primeval forests that are largely undisturbed. The island is home to many nationally protected animal species including Iriomote cat and crested serpent eagle. The island is considered a valuable asset in many ways...

Yubu Island

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Yubu Island was formed by an accumulation of sand and sediment runoff from the Yonaragawa River on Iriomote Island. Originally an uninhabited island, people began to live here back when seasonal farmers from nearby islands set up temporary dwellings here for rice paddy cultivation on Iriomote.
The waterway between Yubu Island and Iriomote Island is very shallow, being just one meter deep even during...

Hatoma Island

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Hatoma Island is located 5.4 km to the north of Iriomote Island and sits atop a coral reef. The island is roughly a circle shape and has a hill in the middle called Hatoma Forest, which is a bit difficult to climb on a bicycle atop, atop which sits a lighthouse. This site was made famous as the location of the 2005 movie Ruri no Shima.
Although the island has few tourism destinations, it does boast...

Hateruma Island

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Hateruma Island is Japan's southernmost inhabited island and it formed from elevated coral reefs. The name of the island derives from the Okinawan word for coral reefs. Hateruma Island has many places of natural scenic beauty, including views of pastoral sugar cane fields and sheer 60-meter tall cliffs, as well as the beautiful Nishihama Beach, which was voted Japan's best beach in 2012. Hateruma is...

Yonaguni Island

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Located in between Ishigaki Island and Taiwan, Yonaguni Island is Japan's westernmost island where the last sunset can be seen. Being a remote island in the middle of the open ocean where waves can ride high, the island was once known by the name donan, which literally translates to ""hard to reach,"" as traveling to the island was a difficult challenge in the past. Incidentally, an Okinawan Awamori by...

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