Tokashiki Island (Tokashikijima)

Gateway to the Kerama Islands

Tokashiki Island, located about 30 kilometers west of Okinawa’s main island, is the largest of the Kerama Islands. This picturesque island is the perfect destination for a day trip or an overnight stay if you want to explore the beauty of the surrounding islands. Whether you’re interested in snorkeling, diving, sunbathing, or even whale watching, Tokashiki Island has something for everyone.

Don’t Miss

When visiting Tokashiki Island, there are a few attractions that you definitely shouldn’t miss. Firstly, there are two great beaches on the west coast of the island that are perfect for sunbathing and swimming. These beaches offer stunning views and crystal-clear waters, making them the ideal spots to relax and unwind.

In addition to the beaches, Tokashiki Island also offers hiking trails that allow visitors to explore the unspoiled nature of the island. These trails take you through lush forests, offering breathtaking views of the surrounding landscapes. Whether you’re an avid hiker or just looking for a leisurely stroll, these hiking trails are a must-visit.

Lastly, if you’re visiting Tokashiki Island during the winter months, make sure to take part in the whale watching tours. The waters surrounding the Kerama Islands are home to humpback whales during the winter season. These majestic creatures migrate from Alaska and congregate in the waters off Tokashiki Island. Witnessing these magnificent creatures up close is an experience you won’t soon forget.

How to Get There

Getting to Tokashiki Island is relatively easy. High-speed ferries run from Tomari Port in Naha to Tokashiki three times a day, with each trip taking approximately 35 minutes. Alternatively, there is a car ferry that departs once a day and takes around 70 minutes to reach the island. If you prefer to explore the other islands in the Kerama group, island-hopping is also a popular option.

Snorkeling Heaven

Upon arriving at Tokashiki Port on the northeast coast of the island, you’ll quickly realize that the best snorkeling spots are located on the west coast. Despite being the largest of the Kerama Islands, Tokashiki is still quite compact, and it only takes a short 10-minute drive to reach the beautiful beaches and Aharen Port.

The most popular snorkeling spot on Tokashiki Island is Aharen Beach. The bay at Aharen Beach offers excellent shelter from waves and currents, making it ideal for snorkeling. The waters are teeming with a variety of marine life, including fluorescent blue damselfish, butterflyfish, Moorish idols, and clownfish. The vibrant coral reefs and giant clams further enhance the snorkeling experience at Aharen Beach.

Transportation on the Island

While bus services on Tokashiki Island are infrequent, there are several options for getting around the island. Renting a car, scooter, or bicycle is the best way to explore the island at your own pace. If you’re staying overnight on the island or participating in any of the tours offered, be sure to inquire about the shuttle bus services provided by various companies.

A Tale of Two Beaches

In addition to Aharen Beach, Tokashiku Beach is another great spot for snorkeling, although it is more suited for swimming and sunbathing. Both beaches offer excellent facilities, including equipment rental for diving and snorkeling. There are also a range of tours available for those looking to explore the surrounding waters.

Winter Visitors

For humpback whales, the best time to visit Tokashiki Island is between January and March. During this time, humpback whales migrate from Alaska and gather in the waters off the Kerama Islands. Whale watching tours are available, allowing visitors to witness these magnificent creatures in their natural habitat. It’s important to note that the availability of tours and the exact timing of whale sightings may vary, so it’s recommended to check the official website for the latest information.

Recommended for You

If you’re looking to explore more of the surrounding islands, there are a couple of recommendations worth considering. The first is the Kerama Islands, which offer stunning beaches, crystal-clear waters, and excellent snorkeling and diving opportunities. The second recommendation is Zamami Island, also known as Zamamijima. This island is famous for its beautiful beaches, vibrant marine life, and relaxed atmosphere.

In conclusion, Tokashiki Island is a gateway to the Kerama Islands and offers a range of activities and attractions for visitors. From snorkeling in the crystal-clear waters to hiking through unspoiled nature, there is something for everyone to enjoy. Whether you’re planning a day trip or an overnight stay, Tokashiki Island is a must-visit destination in Okinawa.

Address And Maps Location:

Shimajiri-gun, Okinawa-ken

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