The Island of God, “Kudakashima Island”
Kudakashima Island is a narrow island 8km in perimeter, located 5.3km from Chinen Cape just southeast of Okinawa.
Following are several theories to why Kudakashima Island is called the “Island of God”: goddess Amamikiyo who created the land of the Ryukyus came down from heaven and created this island first; the god of sea came down as a white horse and descended to this island; it is the birthplace of grains (wheat, chestnut, millet, adzuki bean, and uku bean); religious works and services were performed during the Ryukyu Dynasty Period.
During the Ryukyu Dynasty Period, Sayahautaki was considered the most sacred place in Okinawa, and the kings visited this sacred grove before they went on the pilgrimage to Kudakashima Island. Back then, Sayahautaki was thought to gather the spiritual power from Kudakashima Island.
During international spiritual festivals, white sand collected from Kudakashima Island was brought and spread throughout Sayahautaki, and people prayed facing towards the “Island of God, Kudakashima Island”.
How to get to Kudakashima Island and Sightseeing Information
It is possible to go on a day trip to Kusakashima Island tour from Naha.
There are 6 round trips of ferry/high speed vessel (Boat Ride is about 20 minutes) from Azama Port located at Nanjo-city Chinen. There are also nonscheduled high speed marine taxis from the same port, and these do not require reservation.
*Fares are as follows: Ferry Round Trip ¥1280, High Speed Vessel ¥1460.
The island is flat, and there are no rental cars, so you would need to rent a bicycle or take a walk to tour around the island.
Our recommendation is to rent a bicycle!!
One you arrive to Kudakashima Island, there are few rental bicycle shops around the port. Rental fees are hourly basis, so you can adjust the number of hours to rent based on your departing time.
It will most likely take 2 to 3 hours to go around the island, 4 to 5 hours if you wish to tour at a slower pace.
Visitors will be handed a island map, so we recommend you to tour around the highlights of the island.
Narrow path made from white corals, never ending blue sky, green trees and vivid colored flowers in full blossom, this is Kudakashima Island.
Highlights of Kudakashima Island
Until this day, Kudakashima Island, the sacred place of Ryukyu mythology, is a very important and special place to the Okinawan people.
Still to this date, there are several sacred groves scattered around the island, and every year more than 20 religious services are continued to be performed.
The people worship and have faith in the gods, and they continue to protect the island.
Nowadays, Kudakashima Island is popular as a location thought to be flowing with mystical energy and a spot for healing.
If you ever have the chance, please visit and feel the mystical power the island holds.
●Since the old times, the local people from the island have been protecting the place of worship and the sacred groves. There are places where you can not enter freely with a light heart. Please make sure to check before you visit.
●Please do not take any stones and/or plants from the island, it belongs there for a reason.
●Unless there are religious festivals, no people except the shrine maiden can enter the northern side of the village.
●To keep the island clean, please take all your trashes with you.
●Camping is not allowed other than the designated camp area.
●Please think this island as your homeland, bear in mind to keep the island beautiful, relax and take good rest, and be safe on your way back home.
From the Kudakashima Island Promotion Association
Access to Azama Port, the port which will take you to Kudakashima Island
Sightseeing Spots that are connected to Kudakashima Island
Sefa Utaki was created by the goddess Amamikiyo during the 15 to 16th centuries and is an historical sacred spot that served as one of the key locations of worship in the religion of the Ryukyuan people for millennia. Rituals held at Sefa Utaki played a key role in the official religious functions of the Ryukyu Kingdom. Its highest priestesses were inaugurated a…