My Okinawa World Adventure
Okinawa World is simply the place to be when you want to have a quick taste of authentic Okinawan culture. The place is considered a theme park in Okinawa. I must say that this is a different kind of theme park. Do not expect like "Disneyland" kind of place. It is a happy place for people who are fond of history, culture and natural science. The place is definitely rich in local Okinawan tradition, plus it features interesting natural wonders.
When we went to Okinawa World, I absolutely did not know what to expect. It was quite an adventure for me because I find everything so exotic in Okinawa. Since I only had a little time to tour, going to this theme park is truly worth it if you're only spending one full day in Okinawa like me. Here are the highlights of my Okinawa World adventure:
Habu Museum Park
Habu is a known venomous snake in Okinawa. They have a little museum that features the history of the Habu and other scientific discoveries about other snake species. We were lucky to have a chance to watch the snake show. What I do not like about it is that the performer spoke zero English. Good thing there are audio earphones provided for tourists to translate all the information in some different languages, although, wearing it is quite distracting. The show would be very informative for Japanese speakers. At the end of the show, you are allowed to take a picture with a huge Burmese Python. It was quite scary but the experience to get to carry a live python feels awesome.
The Gyokusendo Cave is the main attraction of Okinawa World. This cave is considered a national treasure as it is one of the longest and largest caves in Japan. There are so many different formations of stalactite and stalagmite that are utterly amazing to look at.
Ryukyu Photography Hall
Of course, I would not leave this place without getting the best souvenir of all -- a photo taken wearing a traditional Japanese kimono. You can choose your own design. It was very hard to choose because all of the kimono were very beautiful. The kimono for women wee brightly-colored, so I decided to choose the yellow one because it looks good in pictures. The photo shoot was quick yet fun!
There are so many other things to see and do at Okinawa World. They have Bingata Studio/ Indigo Dyeing Studio (dying textiles), Paper Making Studio, Weaving Studio, Bukubuku Teahouse, Pottery Studio and Ryuku Glass Studio for arts and crafts lovers. There is also a program where the Super Eisa troupe performs. Eisa is a traditional Okinawan folk dance. Their program is about 25 minutes of lively entertainment.
Indeed, Okinawa World is a fantastic place to visit for a wonderful exposure to Okinawan culture.
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