Tokashiki, Okinawa

Tokashiki (渡嘉敷村, Tokashiki-son) is a village located in the Kerama Islands in Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. It includes 10 islands, of which only Tokashiki and Maejima are inhabited, with Maejima only having very few residents.[1] The village is part of Shimajiri District.[2] Tokashiki is known for its corals, sea, beach and sun. From Tomari Port in Naha, it takes less than one hour to reach this island.

Tokashiki
渡嘉敷村
Village
Tokashiki Village Office
Tokashiki Village Office
Flag of Tokashiki
Official seal of Tokashiki
Location of Tokashiki in Okinawa Prefecture
Location of Tokashiki in Okinawa Prefecture
Tokashiki is located in Japan
Tokashiki
Tokashiki
Location in Japan
Coordinates: 26°12′0″N 127°22′0″E / 26.20000°N 127.36667°E / 26.20000; 127.36667Coordinates: 26°12′0″N 127°22′0″E / 26.20000°N 127.36667°E / 26.20000; 127.36667
CountryJapan
RegionKyushu
PrefectureOkinawa Prefecture
DistrictShimajiri
Government
 • MayorMasashige Zamami
Area
 • Total19.18 km2 (7.41 sq mi)
Population
 (March 31, 2013)
 • Total697
 • Density36/km2 (94/sq mi)
Time zoneUTC+09:00 (JST)
City hall address183 Tokashiki, Tokashiki-son, Shimajiri-gun, Okinawa
901-3592
ClimateCfa
Websitewww.vill.tokashiki.okinawa.jp/en/index.htm/
Symbols
FishSkipjack tuna
FlowerKerama Azalea
TreeChinese Fan Palm

On 28 March 1945, during World War II, 394 inhabitants, mostly from farmer families, were forced by Japanese soldiers to immolate themselves with grenades after the landing of US troops.[3]

GeographyEdit

The village of Tokashiki consists of 10 islands of various sizes in the center of the Kerama Islands. The village is located approximately 30 kilometres (19 mi) west of Naha, the prefectural capital of Okinawa. The islands of village, particularly on Tokashiki Island itself, are rugged and mountainous.[2]

ClimateEdit

Climate data for Tokashiki (1991−2020 normals, extremes 1977−present)
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Record high °C (°F) 24.1
(75.4)
24.6
(76.3)
25.7
(78.3)
26.7
(80.1)
29.0
(84.2)
30.7
(87.3)
32.1
(89.8)
32.5
(90.5)
31.6
(88.9)
30.1
(86.2)
28.4
(83.1)
26.8
(80.2)
32.5
(90.5)
Average high °C (°F) 17.8
(64.0)
18.1
(64.6)
19.7
(67.5)
22.0
(71.6)
24.6
(76.3)
27.5
(81.5)
29.3
(84.7)
29.3
(84.7)
28.3
(82.9)
25.8
(78.4)
22.8
(73.0)
19.5
(67.1)
23.7
(74.7)
Daily mean °C (°F) 15.6
(60.1)
15.7
(60.3)
17.2
(63.0)
19.5
(67.1)
22.2
(72.0)
25.1
(77.2)
26.9
(80.4)
26.8
(80.2)
25.8
(78.4)
23.5
(74.3)
20.7
(69.3)
17.4
(63.3)
21.4
(70.5)
Average low °C (°F) 13.8
(56.8)
13.8
(56.8)
15.2
(59.4)
17.6
(63.7)
20.4
(68.7)
23.4
(74.1)
25.2
(77.4)
25.1
(77.2)
24.1
(75.4)
21.9
(71.4)
19.1
(66.4)
15.7
(60.3)
19.6
(67.3)
Record low °C (°F) 3.7
(38.7)
6.0
(42.8)
5.5
(41.9)
10.4
(50.7)
14.0
(57.2)
15.3
(59.5)
19.9
(67.8)
21.6
(70.9)
17.7
(63.9)
16.1
(61.0)
9.5
(49.1)
7.6
(45.7)
3.7
(38.7)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 134.2
(5.28)
129.2
(5.09)
170.3
(6.70)
194.9
(7.67)
269.1
(10.59)
284.8
(11.21)
154.7
(6.09)
208.8
(8.22)
234.6
(9.24)
157.4
(6.20)
120.9
(4.76)
135.8
(5.35)
2,200.5
(86.63)
Average precipitation days (≥ 1.0 mm) 12.1 11.3 13.0 11.8 12.4 11.7 8.4 11.0 11.7 8.6 9.1 10.9 132
Mean monthly sunshine hours 89.9 97.6 124.0 135.6 163.7 188.8 274.0 248.2 207.1 180.0 126.1 105.8 1,938.4
Source: Japan Meteorological Agency[4][5]


HistoryEdit

Early historyEdit

Prior to World War II Tokashiki produced charcoal for the city of Naha. Bonito fishing was also a mainstay of the population of the island, but as the bonito industry declined, the population of the village was reduced greatly.

World War IIEdit

The American forces landed on Tokashiki on March 27, 1945, as an early part of the Battle of Okinawa. On the following day, March 28, 1945, 394 inhabitants of Tokashiki, mostly from farming families, immolated themselves with grenades after the landing of US troops, at the command of Japanese soldiers, in a practice that became known as shūdan jikketsu, or group suicide. The group suicide on Tokashiki in late March was a precursor to large-scale group suicides on Okinawa Island in the following months.[3]

MaejimaEdit

The island Maejima once had a population of 380, but a string of powerful typhoons forced the inhabitants to eventually abandon their homes and leave the island, with the last 4 families leaving in February 1962. From then on the island was uninhabited for 42 years until in 2003 a former resident moved back to the island together with his family.[1]

TransportationEdit

Tokashiki Island is connected to Tomari Port in Naha by ferry.[2]

EconomyEdit

AgricultureEdit

Tokashiki is home to small-scale farming. A small amount of vegetables are produced in the village.[2]

TourismEdit

The village of Tokashiki is part of Okinawa Kaigan Quasi-National Park and is blessed with a remarkable number of spots of scenic beauty. Due to this, the village has promoted tourism as a primary industry since the reversion of Okinawa Prefecture to Japan in 1972. Numerous tourist facilities such as hotels, esplanades, and viewing towers have been built across Tokashiki Island.[2]

Noted placesEdit

  • Shinrin Park. The park is accessible from the Aharen district only by foot, and consist of a wide grassy area and a large-scale wooden for children. Shinrin Park is quiet as it has relatively few visitors.[6]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ a b "Ryukyu Shimpo: "Book on the history of Maejima Island published"". Retrieved 2019-07-31.
  2. ^ a b c d e "渡嘉敷(村)" [Tokashiki]. Nihon Daihyakka Zensho (Nipponika) (in Japanese). Tokyo: Shogakukan. 2013. OCLC 153301537. Archived from the original on 2007-08-25. Retrieved 2013-05-02.
  3. ^ a b Hastings, Max (2007). Nemesis: the battle for Japan, 1944-45. London: HarperPress. p. 372. ISBN 9780007219827. OCLC 148289737.
  4. ^ 観測史上1~10位の値(年間を通じての値). JMA. Retrieved March 16, 2022.
  5. ^ 気象庁 / 平年値(年・月ごとの値). JMA. Retrieved March 16, 2022.
  6. ^ 渡嘉敷島 [Tokashiki Island] (in Japanese). Naha, Okinawa Prefecture, Japan: Okinawa Information IMA. 2011. Retrieved 2013-05-21.

External linksEdit