History of OKINAWA

Okinawa is surrounded by beautiful oceans and blessed with a superb natural environment. The islands were once a small independent nation called the Ryukyu Kingdom. Absorbing the influences of China, Southeast Asia, Japan, and America, it cultivated an abundant culture of its own. Looking back on Okinawa's history and culture, there are many instances where it is clear there are substantial differences with other regions of Japan. This is where you will see the extent of Okinawa's diversity.

Okinawa's History
In these pages are brief explanations of some of the history, from prehistoric times to the present, that has shaped the Ryukyu Kingdom and Okinawa.

History Tour Map
There are photos and explanations on 118 places of historical interest within Okinawa Prefecture.

Return to Ryukyu Cultural Archive

[Okinawa's Historical Guide for High School Students/1994, Edited & Published by Okinawa Prefecture Board of Education] [Ryukyu & Okinawa's History for High Schools/1997, Written by Toshiaki Arashiro, Okinawa Historical Education Research Faculty/Published by Toyo Kikaku] The Southern Kingdom, Ryukyu/1992, Published by NHK Publishing [Okinawa Compact Dictionary/1998, Edited & Published by Ryukyu Shinpo] [A Guide to the History of Okinawa Prefecture/1994, Edited by Okinawa Historical Research Group/Published by Yamakawa Shuppansha Ltd.] [The Culture of Okinawa/1992, Edited & Published by Okinawa Prefectural Government] [Okinawa's Cultural Assets Volumes 1 - 4/Edited by Okinawa Prefecture Board of Education/Published by Okinawa Prefectural Museum Tomo No Kai] [A Chart of Ryukyu Kingdom/1993, Kurayoshi Takara & Masayuki Dana/Published by Kawade Shobo Shinsha] [A Guide to Okinawa Prefectural Museum/1987, Edited & Published by Okinawa Prefectural Museum]