Okinawa Prefecture

Article

January 18, 2022

Okinawa Prefecture (Okinawa Prefecture, (Okinawa language: Uchina / ʔucinaa /, English: Okinawa Prefecture) is a prefecture located in the Kyushu / Okinawa region of Japan. The prefectural office is located in Naha City. It is located in the westernmost part of Japan and is composed of many islands such as the main island of Okinawa, Miyakojima, and Ishigakijima.

Overview

It is composed of the islands of the Nansei Islands (Okinawa Islands, Maejima Islands, Daito Islands) excluding the Satsunan Islands in Kagoshima Prefecture, and is sandwiched between the East China Sea and the Pacific Ocean. With an area of ​​2,281 square kilometers, it is the fourth largest prefecture in Japan after Kagawa, Osaka, and Tokyo, and is also the prefecture that includes the southernmost area of ​​Japan where people live. Yonaguni-cho, Yaeyama-gun is the westernmost local government in Japan, and Tuishi, which is located on the north-northwestern end of Yonaguni Island, is the westernmost point in Japan. About 90% of the prefectural population is concentrated on the main island of Okinawa, and 80% of the prefectural population is concentrated on the central and southern part of the main island. The population density of central Naha is comparable to that of the three major metropolitan areas. Almost the entire area has a subtropical climate, and some belong to the tropics. It has a mild climate throughout the year, and the minimum temperature rarely falls below freezing. It is located in an important location as a sea lane and a military center (first island chain), and there are many US military bases in Japan. The main US military facilities include Kadena Air Base, Futenma Air Base, and Camp Butler. There are large differences from the four major islands of the Japanese archipelago, from historical background (described later) to religion, culture and customs, personal names and dialects, cooking and food culture and industry, population composition and income disparity. Okinawa "outside the prefecture" may be commonly referred to as "inland (Naichi)", and Japanese outside Okinawa may be referred to as "inland people (Nature)". Since it is one of the few southern islands in Japan, it has become one of the best resort areas in Japan and has become a standard summer tourist destination for Japanese people. In particular, after the broadcast of the TV drama "Chura-san" in 2001, Okinawan culture has surpassed the boom and has become familiar even outside the prefecture, and the number of tourists and immigrants from outside the prefecture has increased significantly. Okinawa Prefecture is also focusing on the tourism field with its strengths such as cultural experience, Okinawan cuisine, leisure, marine sports and war ruins. Although the global name recognition of Okinawa as a whole is still low, only Zamami Island has been awarded two Michelin Green Guide Japan stars and has become a national park, making it a major tourist attraction in Japan overseas. It has been introduced and has gained a certain degree of name recognition. Looking at the industry ratio in Okinawa Prefecture, the tertiary industry including tourism accounts for 79.2%, while the primary industry is 5.4% and the secondary industry is 15.4%, which is sluggish. Since Okinawa is located on the south side of the Pacific High and close to the sea area where tropical cyclones occur, the weather in Okinawa tends to be rough from early September to early November during the typhoon season, and passenger planes to and from Okinawa are likely to be canceled. However, since September is the off-season despite the high temperature, it is possible to travel cheaply under almost the same conditions as in summer. In the martial arts world, it is world-famous as the birthplace of karate (Ryukyu Karate), and many foreign students are practicing at the karate dojo in the prefecture. In boxing, he has produced many world champions and famous players, including Yoko Gushiken from Ishigaki City.

Name

The origin of the place name "Okinawa" comes from the theory that "Okinawa (fish) is (ba)", which means "offshore fishing ground" (Iha Fuyu), and "the place off the coast". "A distant place.

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