Zamami Island — Japan on 1000 yen a day

Japan on 1000 yen a day? Yes, by cycling and camping on Zamami Island


Thinking Japan is too expensive, most budget travelers eschew Japan for southeast Asia. But with a mountain bike and a tent, it’s possible to travel in Okinawa on 1000 yen a day — and enjoy it — especially on Zamami island.


To do this, I cycled from Shibuya two hours to Haneda airport, removed the front wheel and put my bike in a bag, and flew on Skymark Airlines to Naha. At Naha airport, while others were waiting for trains, buses and taxis, I put my mountain bike back together, and cycled across town to the ferry to Zamami island, in the Kerama group.


Landing on the untouristed shores of Zamami, I then cruised along a coastal road to a campground beside a white sand beach. For the next week, all I needed was some pocket change for local food and drink, as I explored empty roads beside empty beaches and up and down leafy hills overlooking whales and spectacular sunsets.

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