“Churaumi” (beautiful sea): the product of exceptionally clear water and the tropical island sun

Okinawa’s seas are so clear, visibility is claimed to extend past 50 meters at times.
Okinawa’s seas are some of the clearest in the world.
They’re so clean that when you’re diving it’s almost as if there’s no water at all, and you can experience the ultimate floating sensation.

This exceptionally clear water and the tropical island sun come together to create Okinawa’s beautiful colors.
Looking up from a boat you can see an endless sky blue, stretching into infinity without a single cloud.

Lower your gaze and you will see a sea of indigo blue, so deep it’s almost navy, bordered by the horizon and extending far into the distance. Look down at the shoals to see robust coral reefs bathed in emerald green.

Dive into the water and its blue is extinguished by the strong rays of the sun. It’s so clear, in fact, that the ocean bottom is clearly visible from the surface.
The water is so clear that if you’re not careful when descending you’ll forget it’s even there, and it won’t be until you feel the pressure in your ears that you’ll realize “wow, I’ve sunk pretty far.”

Touch down on the bottom and take a look around and you’ll see a wild sea of deep, dark blue unfold before you. Despite this, the clarity of the water allows you to see endlessly into the distance.
If you look down from a drop off, you’ll see an increasingly deepening blue being pulled down into the bottomless depths.
Such a lovely blue gradation….

While Okinawa’s “churaumi” (beautiful sea)—created by clear water and sunshine—changes with its surroundings, it is brimming with beauty in its entirety.
Why are Okinawa’s seas so clear? Why are Okinawa’s seas so clear?
A big reason is that it is heavily influenced by the warm Kuroshio current, which travels upwards from just below the equator.
With a lack of plankton and other nutrients, the clear waters just keep getting clearer.
Light is readily transmitted through the water, where it reflects off of features such as white sands and beautiful corals to create a bright, lovely “Ryukyu” (Okinawa) blue for passing ships.

As a whole, Okinawa’s waters are only slightly affected by residential and commercial wastewater, and the limestone strata act as filters, contributing to water clarity. However, the level of clarity varies greatly based on the surroundings.
Water clarity drops off in inlets and urban areas, while for Miyako-jima Island, with its Ryukyu limestone strata and absence of rivers, the water is extremely clear in spite of the island’s large size.

Pleasant, stress-free seas

Okinawa’s waters are so clear that if you look up you can clearly see the bottoms of boats
Stress-free churaumi (beautiful sea) Of the many things that cause divers stress, two major sources are water temperature and clarity—things divers in Okinawa don’t have to worry about. Furthermore, when compared to the Japanese mainland, divers in Okinawa use relatively light equipment, and the incidence of divers losing track of their buddies and groups is low.
Okinawa’s stress-free seas are a delight for beginners; even C card training is fun!
“Easy diving” is one of the major draws of Okinawa’s waters.
The blue backdrop of Okinawa’s seas is also pleasing to photo enthusiasts Okinawa’s clear waters make searching for fish easy, as well as provide a beautiful blue background for photos.
Whether the subject is a lovely warm color or the dark silhouette of a large sea creature, you’re sure to get a great shot, and maybe expand your photographic repertoire along the way!

Watching the transparent bodies of pygmy sweepers and luminous cardinalfish sparkling in the sunlight will lift your spirits.
Robust coral and sprawling white sands
Circling tropical fish and warm, clear water whose visibility extends far into the distance
Your paradise can be found in Okinawa’s seas.

Photo by Takaji Ochi

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