Okura Nikko Hotel Management Co., Ltd. promises to warm the hearts and minds of winter travelers who visit Okinawa—Japan’s southernmost prefecture—to stay at any of four Okura Nikko Hotels’ properties: JAL Private Resort Okuma, Hotel Nikko Alivila/Yomitan Resort Okinawa, Hotel JAL City Naha, or Hotel Nikko Yaeyama.
Once the summer heat drops and the peak crowds vanish, sub-tropical Okinawan pleasantly warm months between October and March continue to attract tourists looking to catch some sun and enjoy attractions such as the annual return of humpback whales.
Okinawa Island is an ideal location located in the southern tip of Japan to watch humpback whales as they migrate south to breed and give birth from December to March. One of the very best spots for whale watching is Motobu Peninsula, close to JAL Private Resort Okuma. Also, lucky guests often go no further than their room balconies to see a humpback’s silvery spout at Hotel Nikko Alivila/Yomitan Resort Okinawa, about an hour drive from Naha Airport. For more close-up experiences, Hotel JAL City Naha can arrange passage on an excursion out of nearby Naha Port, the home of many whale-watching boats.
JAL Private Resort Okuma and Hotel Nikko Alivila/Yomitan Resort Okinawa offer romantic sunset cruises throughout late-November. Guests board stable, twin-hull catamarans to enjoy unforgettably golden sunsets while cutting through the waters of the East China Sea.
Hotel Nikko Yaeyama is located on Ishigaki, an island some 410 kilometers southwest of Okinawa Island and famous for star-studded evening skies in autumn and winter. Guests can enjoy Ishigaki’s warm, clear sea, including night kayak and hiking tours the hotel offers. Back on Okinawa Island, guests at JAL Private Resort Okuma can also view spectacular stars in a special tour to the observatory at Kunigami Forest Park.
A recent survey by the Development Bank of Japan and the Japan Travel Bureau Foundation revealed that abundant nature and scenery are key reasons why Japan is a lure for travelers from China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Malaysia, South Korea, Taiwan, Thailand and Singapore.
Okinawa is a tourism magnet for travelers both in Japan and overseas. In 2015, international arrivals reached an all-time high of 1.5 million, up 68 percent from 2014, according to a survey by Okinawa’s prefectural government. Over 80 percent of Okinawa’s overseas visitors are from China, Hong Kong, South Korea or Taiwan.
Reservations are required for any tour arranged through each group hotel. Programs are subject to change due to weather.