When life gets busy, sometimes it’s important to set aside time to disengage and re-center. Finding calm amid the chaos of working daily, raising children and pursuing our goals is certainly no easy task, but having the right atmosphere and good vibes can certainly be a good start. Kramp Coffee store in Awase is one of the few places in Okinawa that can be said to have both of these features, in addition to great food and excellent service.
Okinawa Life Coaching private and confidential life coaching to help with many of life's challenges. They have monthly plans available as well as an interpreter for Japanese speakers. View the cards below for more info or visit their website using the buttons below.
Posted 1 year, 9 months ago at 7:27 pm. Add a comment
C&C Okinawa Moving company offers a complete moving service, whether it's a full home move or single pieces of furniture move and delivery. They can also recycle unwanted furniture. Check out their website for full details of their services.
They're a licensed removal company and offer free quotes as well as coverage across the whole island. Click the website button below for more info and to contact them via email.
Tel: (080) 4867-2735 OR (080) 3224-1563
Posted 1 year, 9 months ago at 3:48 pm. 1 comment
The weather is warming up and the dive season in Okinawa is about to get into full swing. It’s time to clean the dust off that dive gear and get back in the water. For those of us that have been braving the chilly winter waters of Okinawa it’s time to put those hoods and thick wetsuits away and dig those shorties and rash guards out of the dive locker. As the water warms up the crowds will be flocking back to the most popular spots on Okinawa. Remember that if you have taken a few months off from diving, to take it slow, or better yet contact one of the pros at Reef Encounters to schedule a refresher course to make sure you can plan those dives correctly and still recall all those emergency procedures. For those divers switching to summer weight wetsuits remember to adjust those weights belts accordingly.
Posted 1 year, 10 months ago at 9:55 pm. Add a comment
Ryukyu glass making is a relatively new Okinawan craft compared to bingata dying and ceramics. Around the start of the 20th century, Okinawan craftsmen began making practical, colorless glass items for everyday functions, like oil vessels and fly catchers.
Posted 1 year, 10 months ago at 5:12 pm. 1 comment
Once February and March roll around, we tend to forget all those rigid resolutions we set for ourselves in January, and start getting realistic. Hey, we’re all for good nutrition, but sometimes you just have to splurge. What better way to indulge yourself than trying a sweet that’s distinctly Okinawan? Whether for Valentine’s Day, White Day, or “just because”, we think these Okinawan candies will satisfy any sweet tooth.
Posted 1 year, 10 months ago at 4:59 pm. Add a comment
Sitting eight floors up, where Blueberry Café once was, 360 Grille has an unparalleled atmosphere. It’s circular layout guarantees almost every seat a panoramic view of Okinawa. In addition to it’s prime location, other aspects prove that no detail has been overlooked. Servers punch orders into tablets, and communicate via headsets. They’re also attentive—no long waits for food each time I went. Plus, doorbells on tables ensured we could easily get our server’s attention if needed. Flat screens playing nature shows line interior walls, and music playing throughout the restaurant adds to the modern vibe, too.
Posted 1 year, 10 months ago at 4:47 pm. Add a comment
February brings the giants of the Pacific into Okinawan waters. Humpback whale season is in full swing with mothers and calves frolicking in the waters of the Keramas and surrounding islands of Okinawa. These gentle giants will be gracing our waters for the next two months as the mothers come to the Keramas’ warm waters to give birth and have the calves fatten up before heading back to cooler waters north of mainland Japan and beyond.
Posted 1 year, 10 months ago at 4:44 pm. Add a comment
Okinawa’s commercial landscape is dotted with neighborhood bakeries and patisseries, offering an array of beautifully decorated pastries for different tastes. So a business focusing only on cupcakes is a novelty, and a risk. Is there enough selection to appease those who like super-sweet, and those who prefer the subtlety of Okinawan donuts?
Posted 1 year, 11 months ago at 2:53 pm. Add a comment
‘Tis the season for gift giving, holiday parties, and thankfully, cooler temperatures. It’s also the perfect time to take a day trip and explore the island. Why not do some sight seeing and cross off a few names from your holiday shopping list?
We’ve selected the top spots for a shopping excursion in downtown Naha–all within walking distance of each other. So throw on your most comfortable walking shoes, and bring a camera, yen, and your shopaholic friends, because there’s lots to see and buy in this unique urban landscape.
It’s easy to get to these Naha shopping hot spots. Just take 58 south and follow the signs for Kokusai–you can turn on Route 42 and park at an underground paid parking garage. Upstairs is Kokusai Street (Route 39) on the left and Palette Kumoji across the street. Our list follows the route we took when we went exploring–we hope you enjoy it as much as we did!
If you only have time for one shopping center near Kokusai, Palette Kumoji, with a Ryubo department store, is it, with a variety of cute, modern gift ideas. As you walk in, the smell of melted chocolate and freshly baked pastries wafts through the 1st floor. Check out impeccably decorated confectionaries here–in Okinawan and Japanese culture, they’re customary to give when invited to someone’s house party.
In the upstairs levels, lots of shops offer unique gifts, many at reasonable prices. Snatch up a leather handbag for less than ¥4000, or get that girly girl in your life a bright, kawaii cosmetic pouch from AMA boutique. Don’t miss the 7th floor, filled with booths of Okinawan arts and crafts, kimono, and artisans at work.
Kokusai Dori, literally “International Street,” is Okinawa’s most famous boulevard, and unlike any other in the world. The street’s 1.6 kilometers are filled with vibrantly colored shops, restaurants, bars, and crowds of people. This is the place to find shisa figurines, treats made with pineapple and ben-imo, Okinawa’s purple potato, plus island and surf wear, t-shirts for your dog, and lots, lots more. Be sure to have your camera ready–there are photo ops everywhere you turn.
Find Mitsukoshi Mall about halfway down Kokusai. It’s smaller than Ryubo, but there are designer goods on the 1st floor, like Gucci sunglasses, Coach purses, and Shiseido products. Most floors offer clothing styled for women, not juniors. Worth checking out: the home goods and kimono displays on the 6th floor, and bingata and woven fabric, Ryukyu glass, jewelry, and other Okinawan crafts on the 7th floor.
On the southeast side of Kokusai Dori, just across from Mitsukoshi, there are three large, covered shopping alleys, or “arcades.” Heiwa Dori, literally “Peace Street,” is the largest and most interesting of the three. Expect to see lots of traditional Okinawan souvenirs, like habu sake, awamori, Ryukyu glass, and even gift packs of Orion beer. There are also clothes, glass figurines, precious stones and jewelry, and lots more. We scored a pretty bracelet made from howlite and a bead of blue Okinawan sea glass.
And, don’t miss out on trying the unique Yukisio salt ice cream shop, near the entrance of Heiwadori. Choose a cup or cone of vanilla soft serve, then sprinkle one of six flavored salts, including black sesame, wasabi, chili pepper, and green tea. Pitchers of water are available, but you might want to keep your water bottle handy.
As you browse along Heiwadori, be sure to keep to the left of the alleyway, and soon you’ll come out to a road that leads directly to the Tsuboya Pottery District. Even if you’re not in the market for ceramics, you don’t want to miss Tsuboya. With its traditional tile roof houses, cobble stone roads, and displays of glazed earthenware, this is a great place to take pictures, or just stroll around, taking in the charming scenery. It’s hard to believe this quiet neighborhood is just a short walk from modern, bustling Kokusai.
Before you go, check out the locations of all the shopping areas on our Naha Shopping Google Map here or scan the QR Code below: