Diving adventures in Japan
Join hammerhead sharks and lionfish as you investigate the reefs and wrecks of the Izu Peninsula, a thickly forested outcrop of land not far from Tokyo. For a bit of adventure, make the long journey to the Ogasawara Islands to explore World War Two wrecks and meet rare marine life in the "Galapagos of the Orient".
The jewel in Japan's diving crown, however, is Okinawa. With white sandy beaches, mangrove swamps, dense jungle and a rich and distinctive local culture, Japan's southernmost prefecture is a true island paradise.
Under the waves of this stunning archipelago you'll experience some of the best diving conditions in the world as you visit kaleidoscopic coral reefs, explore caves and pinnacles, and come face to face with sea turtles, manta rays and perhaps even migrating humpback whales. To top it all off, at the remote island of Yonaguni you can even visit the remains of what some believe to be a real-life Atlantis.
Recommended Diving Experiences
Swim with turtles, spot manta rays and explore a mysterious underwater “Atlantis” on this two-week diving adventure.
Enjoy a stay in Tokyo before jetting south to enjoy some of the very best dives that the subtropical Okinawan islands have to offer.
Diving accommodation across Japan
The Pension Papaya is a friendly family-run inn located just 30 seconds walk from the beach on the west coast of Ishigaki and just 15 minute's drive from the airport. The owners will always make you feel very welcome and you will be sure to appear on their photo blog after your stay here!
Kerama Beach Hotel (Zamami)
The Kerama Beach hotel is a simple but comfortable western style hotel in a quiet location with beaches to the east and west.
Guest rooms are a bit on the bland side, but comfortable with good beds and en-suite bathrooms. All have sea views. The hotel staff are exceptionally friendly, will pick you up from the main port and can arrange diving and snorkelling trips around the Kerama Islands. The hotel has a good restaurant serving simple food including steak and chips! There's also a nice bar and lovely terrace area.
Busena Terrace (Okinawa Island)
The Busena Terrace is one of the top resort hotels on Okinawa Island and for that reason it was chosen to play host to the G8 Summit in 2008.
Nestled on Cape Busena, a thin peninsula in the Nago area of the island, there are coastal views in every direction and the hotel has its own private white sandy beach. There is a wide range of guest rooms ranging from deluxe rooms to suites to cottages with private pools. InsideJapan are happy to book any room type on request, however we highly recommend Ocean View rooms as the less expensive Garden View rooms can have disappointing views. As you would expect from a resort hotel, there are plenty of facilities including a wide range of top class restaurants and bars, a gym, shops, boutiques, indoor and outdoor pools and a spa with a full range of spa treatments and spa baths. There is also a wide range of activities such as cruises, charted boat trips, diving and snorkelling, sea kayaking, trekking, traditional craft workshops, tennis, yoga and various water sports. Please note that there is not much else in the area around the resort (no other shops or restaurants), but that's all the more reason to make full use of the facilities Busena Terrace has to offer.
Hoshinoya Taketomi (Taketomi)
The Hoshinoya is one of the most exclusive accommodation names in Japan, with well-established properties in the cultural capital of Kyoto and in the Japanese mountain resort of Karuizawa.
Their new luxury villas on the island of Taketomi are a wonderful combination of traditional Okinawan exteriors with red-tiled roofs and stone walls and stylish modern interiors with king double beds, warm wooden floors, well appointed bathroom and private garden. The villas are arranged around pool and spa facilities, there is a guest library and a lounge which offers free internet access and laptops, complimentary drinks and snacks and nightly performances of local music. Scuba and snorkelling are easily arranged and can be booked through the hotel and English speaking staff are on hand to advise about excursions. Hoshinoya Taketomi is a fantastic destination for a relaxing stay on this idyllic island.
Pension Papaya (Ishigaki)
The pension serves an excellent breakfast with dinner also available.
Iriomote Eco Village (Iriomote)
Eco Village sits on the edge of the jungle and on the beach. The Eco village is made up of a number of stand alone villas and a small block of rooms all with a sea view just sitting feet away from the oceans edge.
If the clear warm sea is not enough for you, there is a pool for customers to enjoy and for the more adventurous there the establishment is sat on the edge of the Iriomote jungle. All of these modern rooms have ensuite and air conditioning and are equipped with twin beds. The suite room has a large double bed and day lounge. The Eco Village runs a BBQ between April and October and there is a restaurant at other times. It is the perfect location to enjoy the natural surroundings of this wild island.
Yado Natura (Zamami)
The Yado Natura is a family owned Japanese style hotel with just four rooms. It is located in the small main town on the island, a short distance from Zamami port.
The hotel offers free pick-up from the port and will also shuttle you to Furu-Zamami beach - a beautiful sandy beach just a 10 minute drive away. The owners can help arrange snorkelling, scuba diving or sea kayaking if you wish. Rooms are en-suite and have air conditioning. If you inform the staff the night before then a bento lunch boxes can be arranged for the next day.