If you have a husband like mine who hates the beach as much as you love it, you have got to be creative. In the middle of some planning for a short trip to the northern part of Okinawa, hubby came across some information about an underwater observatory and had been meaning to visit. Imagine my excitement! I had to trade a finger or two just to drag him to the water but at that very moment, the universe connived. And when rare moments such as these knock, you strike the iron real hard.
The underwater observatory tower is located in Busena Marine Park in Nago City, about an hour drive on Highway 58 from Ginowan. The beach line alone is stunning. We were not properly dressed for the beach but it was a perfect sunny day to enjoy in autumn. The sand was beautiful in white and the blue sky was a marvelous reflection of the crystal water Okinawa is famous for.
The underwater observatory tower is located 170 meters away from the shore near Busena Cape accessible by free shuttle bus at the Okinawa Busena Resort that departs every 20 minutes from the Beach House to the tower and vice versa. It was a pretty day so we decided to skip the ride and enjoyed the view as we walked approaching the observatory instead.
The observatory allows visitors a 360 degree view of the marine life with a spiral corridor that descends 5 meters deep without getting wet. It is like getting inside a giant tank with glass windows open to the underwater world. As geeks and proud Whovians ourselves, we thought it was the closest we can get to a Tardis :)
There are also glass bottom tours available but we thought it was redundant after having a wonderful time at the underwater observatory. The whale-shaped glass bottom boats were pretty cool though.
Busena Marine Park is a part of the Busena Terrace Beach Resort, a luxury beach resort hotel. A little walk up to the resort’s restaurant will surprise you with a breathtaking view of the cape and the observatory tower. It is Okinawa’s pride considering it has hosted the G8 Leaders’ Summit in 2000 with the world’s famous leaders like US (Ex) President Bill Clinton and Russian President Vladimir Putin just to name a few who have enjoyed the beauty of this sweet cape paradise.
Now, how awesome this treat was on my birthday? PRETTY AWESOME :)
This was a very nice post. I spent a year in Okinawa in 1968 and I suspect the under water observatory was not built yet. That was a shame because it would have been to see this. Thanks for sharing.
Thank you for the visit Mr.Tom. The observatory looks quite new. However, I am pretty sure you enjoyed Okinawa when you were here too even with all its natural beauty and its rich history and culture. We consider ourselves very lucky to be see this island.