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8 Day 7 Night Okinawa Self-drive Trip with Kids Itinerary Preview via Taiwan

Travel period: 13 March to 20 March 2018

Flight: Singapore Airlines to Taiwan, Peach Airlines to Okinawa
Hotel: Okinawa Grand Mer Resort (Okinawa), Marine Piazza Hotel (Okinawa), Yomi Hotel (Taiwan)



Here's a preview of our 8 Day 7 Night Okinawa (Self-drive) - Taiwan Trip with kids itinerary
I'll be creating an individual post for each day and include the link soon so that you can read up in detail. 

Some time ago, we've booked our air tickets to Taiwan during Singapore Airlines Promotion. Yes, we love Taiwan that much. But this time around, a friend from Taiwan suggested that we can pop by Okinawa too since it's a mere 1 hour plus flight away from Taiwan and the air tickets are pretty reasonable too.

So we took Singapore Airlines to Taiwan - Taoyuan airport and took Peach Airlines, a Japanese low-cost carrier (budget) airline to Okinawa. With all the checked-in baggage, we paid about SGD$200+ per pax for Peach Airlines. 
The timing was perfect for us (almost), we landed at Taoyuan airport at 12:30 pm, our flight to Okinawa was at 17:55. So we have sufficient time to walk around the airport, have lunch, settle our wifi for Okinawa etc.

We spent 4 nights in Okinawa and 3 nights in Taiwan even though my optimal choice will be to spend 5 nights in Okinawa but didn't manage to do so as the flight back from Okinawa to Taiwan a day later was so much more expensive.

Part 1: Okinawa



  • Singapore to Taiwan Taoyuan Airport, depart at 0800 hrs
  • Arrive at Taiwan Taoyuan Airport  Terminal 2 at1240 hrs
  • Lunch, settled wifi rental for Okinawa trip
  • Taiwan, Taoyuan Airport Terminal 1 to Okinawa Naha Airport, depart at 1755 hrs
  • Arrive at Naha, Okinawa LCC Terminal at 2020 hrs (note, Japan is an hour ahead of us)
  • Dinner - Yummy Spam Onigiri at NAHA Domestic Airport
  • FREE shuttle bus to Okinawa Grand Mer Resort 2200 hrs
  • Arrive at Okinawa Grand Mer Resort 2300hrs
Depart for Taiwan Taoyuan Airport via Singapore Airlines - loving the service still. The attendant personally came up to us to invite us to priority boarding - travellers with young children. And we ended up being the first to board the plane. 

Initially, we thought of staying 1 night in Taiwan then to Okinawa and last 2 nights in Taiwan but to save travelling time and for convenience sake, I was elated to find Peach airlines with a departure time at 1755 which was just nice for us. If I didn't recall wrongly, there's a Tiger Air Taiwan flight around 2 pm to Okinawa as well but the timing will be too rush for us.
Though we spend most of our Day 1 travelling, it's totally worth it! Still better than checking in and out of hotels and making our way back to the airport should we go with our first option.

Tip #1: If you've ample layover time like us, get the WIFI rental for Okinawa from Taoyuan Airport. The counter we rented ours from was located at Terminal 1 - arrival hall, right at the corner to your right if you're facing the main road. You need to leave a TWD4,000 deposit with them. They have more competitive rates online so do check and book yours via
 klook for better pricing.

Tip #2: Since we arrived relatively late in Okinawa, it's tiring to have to rent a car and drive all the way to the hotel since we're staying some 1hr away from the airport. So pick a hotel with FREE airport shuttle pick up such as Okinawa Grand Mer Resort. It's a fantastic hotel. Will share more in the detailed post.
  • 10:00 am, collect the rental car from Okinawa Grand Mer Resort
  • Wakanatsu Park ( 15 minutes drive from Okinawa Grand Mer Resort) 
  • Lunch at 丘之家 - seafood, sashimi, MAP code  206 035 759 (10 minutes drive from Wakanatsu Park)
  • Bios no Oka,  Map code 206005202*55 ( 10 minutes drive from 丘之家) 
  • American Village, Map Code 33 526 451 ( 40 minutes drive from Bios no Oka)
Tip #3: Pick a hotel which provides car rental package too! Another reason why I love Okinawa Grand Mer resort, they partnered with Toyota Car Rental so you can email them and make a car reservation. We had breakfast and went to the concierge counter to collect our car - super convenient

Tip #4: Just relax and drive slowly, it's super easy to drive in Okinawa! Drivers are mostly courteous and keep a safe distance. Map codes are extremely useful if you're using the GPS provided in the car. You may also key in the landmark name as well. To be honest, I started keying in landmark names instead of using mapcode from Day 3 and found it to be more convenient than having to look through my notes and find out what the map code is.
  • Check out of Okinawa Grand Mer Resort at 10 am
  • Cape Manzamo, 萬座毛 (Elephant Cliff), Map code 206 312 097 (40 mins drive)
  • Busena Marine Terrace, Map code 206 442 075*11 (20 mins drive)
  • Lunch along the way at a "yoshinonya look alike' (20 mins drive)
  • Neo Park (17 mins drive)
  • Check in at Marine Piazza Hotel
Tip #5: Cape Manzamo is mad crowded with buses of tourist so do try to be there early. We waited for about 20 mins to get a parking lot there

Tip #6: It's a self-drive holiday so don't stick to a fixed itinerary, feel free to stop along the way for a break or snacks. We initially wanted to stop at their Michi no Eki for lunch but realised that it's on the opposite side of the road and needed to make a huge U-turn so we gave it a miss and had lunch somewhere else instead. Along the way, we also stopped over at a Daiso and supermarket.
  • Churaumi Aquarium ( 5mins drive)
  • Dolphin Programme at Motobu Genki Village
  • Went back to Marine Piazza to rest (sticky bean fell sick)
  • Aeon Shopping Mall Nago for dinner and supermarket shopping
Tip #7: Churaumi Aquarium is the most popular attraction in Okinawa. So do try to be there super early. The dolphin show is Free and the first session starts at 11 am. You may want to catch the dolphin show before heading in.Alternatively, you can consider entering after 4 pm for a huge discount.

Tip #8: It's ultra convenient to choose an accommodation near Churaumi Aquarium so you don't have to wake up so early in the morning. Plus there are plenty of places to visit in Nago / Motobu area.
  • Check out of Marine Piazza hotel at 9 am
  • Ashibina Outlet Mall
  • 2:30 pm return rental car at Toyota Rent a Car, Naha airport branch
  • 16:40 hrs Depart for Taiwan via Peach Airlines
Tip #9: You must visit the GAP outlet. there's a 50% off storewide. GAP jackets for children cost like $20-$30. If like us, your child plays with Sylvanian Families, do pop by their shop. They have an awesome collection and is priced lower than what we got here. 

Tip #10: You're required to pump petrol before returning the car. Throughout our trip, we only pumped petrol once, right before returning the car. Do keep the receipt as the staff at the car rental company would need the copy of the receipt when you return the car. 



Here's a photo of our loots from our trip, will review some of the snacks and let you know if it's worth buying soon!

Estimated Expenditures (SGD):

Singapore Airlines air tickers 2 adults, 1 child: $1,200
Peach airlines with 2x 20kg checked in baggage: $855
Accommodation for 4 nights in Okinawa: $680
Accommodation for 3 nights in Taiwan: $320
Car rental for 4 days in Okinawa: $250
Misc expenses Okinawa (food, play, attractions): $1000
Misc expenses Taiwan (food, play, attractions): $600

Total: $4,900

That very much concludes the Okinawa leg of our 8 days 7 night Okinawa Self drive trip via Taiwan. 
Hope that gave you an insight or makes you want to travel to Okinawa too!


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