For many reasons, Okinawa is a popular destination for Japanese tourists. It is often called the Hawaii of Japan. Therefore, it might not surprise that Okinawa has more Japanese tourists than Hawaii.
Okinawa is the name of the main island. It was also used as a collective name for the many islands that make up the island group to the south of Japan. There are many islands in Okinawa, and they are waiting for tourists to discover their historical heritage. ‘Peace memorial park Okinawa’ (also known as ‘平和祈念公園沖縄’ in the Japanese Language) is one of the most important historical sites to visit in Japan.
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While some islands will have many of the same amenities as the islands on mainland Japan, others are a natural paradise where there are few to no humans. It all is available on Okinawa’s islands, from lush jungle to bustling nightlife.
Understanding Okinawa’s history is one way to better understand its modern culture. The islands of Okinawa used to be known as the Island Kingdom of Ryukyu. It is believed that the Ryukyu kingdom was once a tributary state under imperial China.
This state existed before being invaded by mainland Japanese in the early 1600s. Later, the islands were annexed by the Japanese people during the late 1800s. The government of Japan considered Okinawa to be part of Japan after that. The government of Japan allegedly suppressed any historical presence of Ryukyu in an apparent effort to instill nationalism in the years that followed.
According to reports, Okinawa’s culture and people were also suppressed. Japanese ways of doing business were relatively enforced. The Okinawa islands were reportedly the site of many atrocities committed by the military from Japan against Okinawa’s people during WWII.