So many fun events to be had on Okinawa!

Base Info

So many fun events to be had on Okinawa!

by: Stripes Okinawa | .
published: July 16, 2018

Editor's note: There's some great events coming up, so get off base and check them out! (This was updated July 16)

EISA NIGHT: July 21, Aug. 11, 12; Enjoy watching Eisa at several locations on Okinawa; free admission; 098-989-5566;

EXPLORE THE CAVE IN THE SOUTHERN ISLAND: July 14-Sept. 30; July 14-Aug.31 Mon.-Fri. at 10 and 11 a.m.; Sat., Sun., holidays at 10, 11 a.m., & 2 p.m.; Sept. 1-30, Mon-Fri at 10 a.m.; Sat., Sun., holidays at 10 a.m. & 1 p.m.; Caving in the Cave Gyoku Sendo; 3,000 yen fees and 1,000 yen for caving gear rental; Children below 4th grade must be accompanied by a guardian; 3,000 yen for a married couple on July, Aug., Sept. 22; reservation required; parking available; 098-949-7421;

PORT ISHIGAKI FESTIVAL 2018 : July 16; yacht sailing, Japan Coast Guard partrol boat tour, etc.; free parking lot available; at the Port Ishigaki remote island tarminal; 098-082-4046;

NIGHT ZOO SATUR-ZOO NIGHT: Okinawa Zoo & Museum will be open until 9 p.m. every Saturday from late July and throughout summer break; 098-933-4190; admissions: adults-500 yen, junior high-high school students-200 yen, K-6-100 yen, 3 years old and younger-free; 098-933-4190;

MIYAKO ISLAND SUMMER FESTIVAL TUG-OF-WAR: July 20-21, 5-9 p.m; 098-082-2779.

35TH UNNA FESTIVAL: July 21-22, 10 a.m.-9 p.m.; Eisa by youth, stage events, fireworks (from 9 p.m. on both days), etc.; at the Onna Son Community Square; free admission; 098-966-1280.

SEAPORT CHATAN CARNIVAL FIREWORKS: July 21& 22, 1,300 fireworks at Chatan Koen Sunset Beach, 5km from Okinawa Minami I.C. on Okinawa Express; 098-926-5678.

MOTOBU MARINE FESTIVAL: July 21-22; Ha-Ri races, live music, Ryukyu drum performances, etc.; free admission; at the Motobu Central Public Hall and Port of Toguchi; 098-047-2700; free admission; free parking lot available.

HENZA HA-RI-: July 22, 9 a.m.-8 p.m.; Ha-ri at 9 a.m.-3:30 p.m.; Sumo at 5 p.m.; Stage event at 5-8 p.m.; at Henza South Port; 098-977-8127.

1ST SHITAKUISHOU TENRANKAI: July 20-22, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; exhibition of Yonabaru Tug of war (with 440 years of history) costumes; dressing and photo sessions available (first come, first served basis; 1,000 yen); free admission; at the Yonabaru-cho Community Center; 098-945-5323;

11TH TOMIGUSUKU HA-RI-: July 22, 9 a.m.-6 p.m.; at Toyosaki Marine Park; 090-8291-4909;

4TH KIN-CHO DAM FESTIVAL: July 22, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.; canoe, water buffalo ride experience, catching eel, water slider, etc. water activities during the dam festival; free admission, free parking lot available; 098-968-6262;

19TH KIN-CHO YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: July 22, 6 p.m.; at Kin-cho Dam; free admission, free parking lot available; 098-968-8996;

15TH KADENA SOCIAL BEER FESTA: July 27, 5-9 p.m.; Karaoke, live music performances, etc.; free admission; at Kadena-cho Rotary Club Plaza; 098-956-7342.

UNNA-: July 27, Aug. 4, 6, 11; Event to pray for abundant rice crop in 4 different villages of  Izena Island; event includes tug-of-war, sumo wrestling, etc.; 098-045-2435;

2018 KUJIRA KAIKYO TOKASHIKI FESTIVAL: July 27-28; Biggest summer event on Tokashiki Island; Taiko (drum) performance, Eisa, fireworks, etc. at Tokashiki Son Elementary-Middle School; free admission; 098-987-2430.

35TH TOMIGUSUKU FESTIVAL: July 28-29, 2-9 p.m.; free admission; at the Toyosaki Kaihin Park; 098-856-8766;

40TH NAGO SUMMER FESTIVAL: July 28-29, 1-9 p.m.; kids dance, karaoka, Yukata contest, live music, and 1,000 fireworks (from 8 p.m. on both days); free admission; at Nago Fishing Port; 098-052-4243.

35TH TOMIGUSUKU FESTIVAL: July 28-29, 2-9 p.m.; free admission; at the Toyosaki Kaihin Park; 098-856-8766;

30TH ALL OKINAWA CHILDREN EISA FESTIVAL: July 29; Children’s Eisa performances at the Toyosaki Chura SUN Beach stage; free admission; parking available; 098-850-3280.

25TH KANNA DAM FESTIVAL: July 29; Events to feel the nature; Canoeing experience and woodwork shop; free admission; parking available; 098-968-5125;

30TH ALL OKINAWA CHILDREN EISA FESTIVAL: July 29; Children’s Eisa performances at the Toyosaki Chura SUN Beach stage; free admission; parking available; 098-850-3280.

OYAMA GIANT TUG-OF-WAR: July 29, 5 p.m.; at Oyama Elementary School Ground; 098-897-3303.

MASHIKI GIANT TUG-OF-WAR: in the afternoon of July 29 (time TBA); free admission; at Mashiki Junior High School Ground; 098-897-3765.

HARVEST FESTIVAL (MURAPURU): July 31; biggest harvest festival in the Yaeyama Region; march, votive dance, giant tug-of-war; no parking available; 098-082-1307.

KUROSHIMA HOUNENSAI: Late July-early August; several dedication arts performed at the Miyazato Beach; 098-082-5445

2018 KUMEJIMA FESTIVAL: Aug. 4-5, 5:30-9:30 p.m.; Okinawa Sumo; ghost leg lottery; live music concerts, fireworks and more for 2 days; at the Kumejima-cho Fureai Park; free admission; 098-851-9162;

40TH NAGO CITY MAYOR'S CUP TIE ALL ISLAND HA-RI: Aug. 5, 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m.; Called Ha-ri- Koushien, 180 teams participate in it; at Nago Harbor; 098-053-7755;

24TH 10,000 PEOPLE’S EISA DANCE PARTY: Aug. 5, 1-6:30 p.m., Eisa parade on a mile-long Kokusai Street; various Eisa performances and you can even join the parade on the day (1,000 yen for impromptu participation); 098-863-2755;

YAGAN UYUMI: Aug. 5-7 (open to the public on on the 7th); Festival to pray for health, children; at Ibiganashi- in Aguni-son; 098-988-2016;

GAKIYA GIANT TUG-OF-WAR: Aug. 6; at Gakiya Public Hall; free admission; 098-046-2800.

GIMA SHIRADOZO SUMO: Aug. 6, 2-8 p.m.; One of the five annual whole Kume Island Okinawa Sumo competitions; register on the day of the event to participate; at the Gima Shiradozo; 098-896-7010;

SHANADO NANZAJO SUMO: Aug. 7; 2-8 p.m.; One of the five annual whole Kume Island Okinawa Sumo competitions; register on the day of the event to participate; at the Janado Community Center; 098-896-7010;

36TH YONABARU TUG OF WAR: Aug. 11-12; Giant tug of war event with 440 years of history; rope is 90 meters long and weighs 5 tons; at the Yonabaru-cho Udunyama Youth Square; 098-945-5323;

35TH CHATAN-SON YOUTH EISA FESTIVAL: Aug. 11, 6 p.m., 12, 5 p.m.; at Chatan Heiwanomori Ballpark; 098-982-9200;

SOUTHERN ISLAND STAR FESTIVAL 2018: Aug. 11-19; A week full of stargazing events on Ishigaki Island; free admission; reservations required for some events; 098-082-1535;

39TH EISA FESTIVAL IN CHATAN: Aug. 12, 4 p.m.; at the Chatan-cho Kuwae General Athletic Playground; 098-926-5678.

KUNIGAMISON FESTIVAL: Aug. 18-19; stage live performances, Ha-Ri- (dragon boat race); fireworks, etc.; at Kunigami Middle School; free admission; 098-041-2101. * Event details will be finalized in early July.

19TH IZENA SHOEN-OH FESTIVAL: Aug. 18-19, 9 a.m.-10 p.m.; children’s soccer, Ha-Ri-, character show, live music, fireworks, etc.; at the Izenason Rinkai Fureai Park; free admission; 098-045-2534.

ZAMAMI ISLAND FESTIVAL: Mid-Aug. date TBD; Eisa, Ryukyu dance, Hawaiian Hula dance, band performances, fireworks, various food stands at the Zamami Port Terminal Square; free admission; 098-896-4321;

NISHIME ALL-ISLAND SUMO & EISA: Aug. 19; Sumo and Eisa at the Nshime Bull Ring; free admission; 098-896-7010;

HATERUMA ISLAND MUSHA-MA: Aug. 24; island’s biggest event that prays for the bumper year and the islanders’ safety; costume parade, dance; at the Hateruma Public Hall; 098-082-5445;

KUME ISLAND KYUBON EISA: Aug. 24-25; On Okinawa, obon is commemorated according to the lunar calendar; Eisa is the Buddhist incantation using chanting, drumbeating, and dancing; Eisa can be seen throughout the island for these days; 098-896-7010;

63TH OKINAWA ZENTO EISA FESTIVAL: Aug. 31-Sept. 2; Biggest Eisa events for 3 days-Eisa Parade on Goya Crossroad 6-9 p.m., Aug. 31, Okinawa City Youth Festival at the Okinawa City Koza Sports Park 3-9 p.m. Sept. 1, Okinawa Zento Eisa at the Okinawa City Koza Sports Park 3-9 p.m., Sept. 2; free admission, fees (1,000-2,500 yen) apply for box seats; 098-937-3986;

NISHIME WHOLE ISLAND SUMO, NISHIME EISA: Aug. 21-Sept. 2; at the old Nishime Bullring; free admission; 098-896-7010;

ORION BEER FEST 2018: Sept. 1-2, 3:30-9 p.m.; enjoy factory-fresh beer and live music performance at Goza Athletic Park Sub Ground; free admission; no parking lot available; 098-877-4511.

AUGUST'S DANCE: Sept. 17-19, 10 a.m.-8 p.m.; Tarama Island harvest festival that takes place Aug. 8-10 in the Lunar calendar; several dances with over 400 years of history; at Ntabaru Ugan and Pitumata Ugan; free admisssion; parking available; 098-079-2260;,

TUBARA-MA: Sept. 22, 6:50-9:30 p.m.; Music competition of traditional folk song-Turaba-ma; takes place on Lunar calendar's Aug. 13; at Shinei Park (Ishigaki City Public Hall in case of rain); free admission; no parking lots available; 098-082-1515.

HARVEST FESTIVAL: Sept. 22, 3-7 p.m., 23, 8 a.m.-10 p.m.; March from Minami Daito-son Village Office to Daito Jingu with Mikoshi and Dashi; On the 23rd, dedicatory sumo and other entertainment; free admission; 098-022-2037;

DAITOGU FESTIVAL: Sept. 22, 3 p.m., 23, 9 a.m.; Biggest event on Kita Daito Island; on the 22nd, Mikoshi parade and fireworks; on the 23rd, harvest prayer ceremony and dedicatory sumo, and other entertaining performances; at Daitogu Shrine; free admission; parking available up to 50 spots; 098-023-4001;

KANEGUSUKU SHISHIMAI: Sept. 24; Event with over 200 years of history to exorcize and pray for bumper crops; in Kanegusuku Village on Kume Island; free admission; no parking available; 098-896-7010;

CHIBANA USUDE-KU: Sept. 24, 3-5 p.m.; Event with over 300 years of history-women wearing traditional crafts, "Chibana Hanaori" dance to exorcize and pray for bumper crops; at Chibana Kamiya and Chibana Public Hall second floor; free admission; parking available up to 6 spots; 098-937-4516.

ITOMAN GIANT TUG-OF-WAR: Sept. 24, 8:30 a.m.-6 p.m.; at between Itoman Rotary (Itoman Elementary School) and Hakugindo; parking lots available; 098-840-8135;

KUME ISLAND HAWAIIAN FESTIVAL 2018: Sept. 28-29, 7-9 p.m.; at Cypress Resort Kumejima on the 28th and Resort Hotel Kume Island on the 29th; 098-985-3260.

KAJIMAYA: Sept. 29, 7 p.m.; Performance Show by powerful Okinawan elders; Advance tickets-2,000 yen for adults, 2,500 yen at the door; 1,000 yen for children for both advance and at the door; at Music Town Otoichiba; 098-932-1949;

41ST GINOWAN HAGOROMO MATSURI: Sept. 29 & 30; 1,000 fireworksm, Eisa, live music and dance performances, etc. at Ginowan Kaihin Koen Tamokuteki Hiroba (multi-purpose square); free admission; parking lots available; 098-968-5125;
URASOE TEDAKO MATSURI: Oct. 20 & 21, 8:40-9 p.m.; about 1,000 fireworks at Urasoe Undo Koen, 10-minute ride from Furujima Station on Yui-monorail; 098-876-1234.