What is Kokusaidori Street?
The Kokusaidori Street is the liveliest, most bustling street on the main island of Okinawa prefecture. The name refers to the 1-mile distance between the Kenchomae-Kosaten intersection and Asato, the fork in Naha city. Many stores selling Okinawa food and souvenirs stand along the street. You can enjoy sightseeing here day and night.
What to See?
1. Plenty of souvenir shops
Kokusaidori Street is the best place to buy souvenirs. You can find handcrafted Shisa (a creature that keep devils away) statues, traditional baked sweets (“chinsuko”), Okinawan donuts (“sata andagi”), and Okinawan summer shirts (“Kariyusi Wear”).
You can find any Okinawa-related souvenirs here.
2. Local Okinawan food
On Kokusaidori Street, there are many restaurants open until late at night serving Okinawa foods. In some restaurants, they even have live music playing sanshin (a traditional guitar-like instrument). It’s fun to drink awamori (an alcoholic beverage that’s an Okinawan specialty) while listening to the smooth sounds.
3. Makishi Public Market
There are many side streets on the Kokusaidori Street, so you can enjoy walking the surrounding town area.
For example, from Ichiba-Tyuo Street, you can access the Makishi Public Market. On the first floor, there are poultry, fishery, perishable foods, and there’s a cafeteria on the second floor. You can even purchase fresh fish on the first floor and have it cooked on the second floor.
In addition, there are many events, like how to cut up tuna, held at this market around the 18th of each month.
Photo: Carol Lin
Kokusaidori Street is the most popular street in Okinawa, and festivals and events are occasionally held here. It is the best place to enjoy Okinawan culture and food and buy souvenirs.
Did You Know?
Kokusaidori Street is also called the “miracle mile” due to its incredible recovery after being burned out during WWII. This lively street is also a symbol of hope after the war.