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24/03/2022 By : Siddharth Vijay Jairaj

Okinawa’s ‘Longevity Islands’ offer the ultimate Wellness break for 2022

With its unique combination of Japanese culture, subtropical temperatures and stunning natural scenery, and as a designated ‘blue zone’ for life expectancy, Okinawa promises travellers a unique wellness retreat in 2022.

Here are just some of Okinawa’s favourite wellness activities:

Learn the local secrets of the 'blue zone'

Located in the north of Okinawa’s main island, visitors will find the rural village of Ogimi. Known locally as the ‘village of longevity’ and proclaimed the ‘longest-living village in Japan’, the community offers homestay experiences welcoming travellers into their homes. The programme includes farming experiences and cooking classes, as well as home-cooked meals and in-depth advice from the wise villagers.  Further details available here: ogimi-tourism.com 

Breathe in and breathe out

Some things are worth waking up early for and a morning walking meditation and beach yoga class, set to the backdrop of Okinawa’s beautiful natural scenery, is certainly one of them. Located on the hill of Onna Village, which is known for its stunning shoreline scenery and idyllic white-sand beaches, travellers will find the spiritual health dojo Wayn-Zen.

Dip into the deep ocean… on land!

For those looking for a unique spa experience, the Ryukyu Onsen Senagajima Hotel is a 15- minute drive from Naha Airport and boasts the Ryujin-no-yu (public hot spring), perfect to start or finish (or both) a wellness-focused trip. The natural hot spring boasts mineral-rich deep ocean water collected from 1,000m underground of Senaga Island that helps promote blood circulation and soothes the muscles – plus it is also believed to have moisturising benefits. Further details and requirements for entry are available here: www.resorts.co.jp/senaga/en/ryujinhotspring 

A luxurious wellness retreat

‘Halekulani Okinawa Escapes’ programme by Halekulani Okinawa is perfect for those looking for a luxurious wellness retreat. Exclusive to guests at the hotel, the programme is run under the supervision of the acclaimed professor Arakawa, who specialises in studying how Okinawa’s distinctive lifestyle enhances wellness and longevity. Additionally, the elegant hotel offers a ‘Wellness Retreat’ programme, combining signature spa treatments and therapies with Reash 4 Stance Theory. 

Feel the magic of waterfall meditation

For a mindful and restorative end to a wellness break in the prefecture, visitors can take part in Nachura’s ‘forest programme’. Here visitors embark on a forest walk to a waterfall to practice both Takigyo (traditional waterfall meditation) and Vipassana meditation (one of the most ancient techniques of meditation)… all while being serenaded by the relaxing sounds of nature. Kucha clay, a special clay with the finest particles and only found in certain parts of Okinawa, is provided to participants for skin detoxing purposes.

For more information on Okinawa, visit the new Visit Okinawa website: Visit Okinawa Japan.com

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