The island of Okinawa, Japan was the destination for a recently completed fam trip for travel professionals from five Canadian tour operator companies.
Okinawa is the most southerly island in Japanese territorial waters that has a major population centre (Naha City). Sponsored by All Nippon Airways (ANA), the trip was designed to showcase an island that is a well-known holiday option in Asia, but much less recognized in North America.
In fact for many people, Okinawa may be most recognized as the location of several US military bases. But visitors will be glad to know that Okinawa not only has a variety of beaches, hotels and resorts, but also a great reputation for offering top-quality diving experiences. The seas around Okinawa and smaller neighbour islands like Ishigaki and Taketomi are known for their colourful sea life, and for the clear waters that allow divers to take it all in.
Those who aren’t up for a snorkeling or scuba adventure in the sea can get something approaching the same experience by visiting the excellent Churaumi Aquarium, located in the north western end of Okinawa. As one of the largest aquariums in the world, the Churaumi is able to house an amazing diversity of sea life, including giant whale sharks as long as 8.7 metres. The enormous acrylic windows are 8.2 metres high, 22.5 metres wide and 60 cm thick, behind which are the sharks, rays and migratory fish of the Kuroshio Sea.
Tour operator reps on the fam trip were from Silkway Travel & Cruises, Jade Tours, Tour East Holidays, Royal Scenic Holidays and Campbell Travel.
Pictured, tour operator reps Vicky Ho, general manager at Royal Scenic Holidays, and Ricky Poon, VP of corporate planning at Silkway Travel & Cruise, who met a giant crustacean outside of the Churaumi Aquarium on a recent fam trip to Okinawa.