Average Weather in Okinawa Japan
In Okinawa, the summers are hot, oppressive, wet, and overcast; the winters are cool and mostly clear; and it is windy year round. Over the course of the year, the temperature typically varies from 57°F to 89°F and is rarely below 50°F or above 92°F.
Based on the tourism score, the best time of year to visit Okinawa for warm-weather activities is from early October to mid December.
The hot season lasts for 3.7 months, from June 13 to October 2, with an average daily high temperature above 84°F. The hottest day of the year is July 19, with an average high of 89°F and low of 80°F.
The cool season lasts for 3.1 months, from December 12 to March 17, with an average daily high temperature below 71°F. The coldest day of the year is January 26, with an average low of 57°F and high of 66°F.
Average High and Low Temperature
The figure below shows you a compact characterization of the entire year of hourly average temperatures. The horizontal axis is the day of the year, the vertical axis is the hour of the day, and the color is the average temperature for that hour and day.
Average Hourly Temperature
In Okinawa, the average percentage of the sky covered by clouds experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The clearer part of the year in Okinawa begins around September 15 and lasts for 7.1 months, ending around April 17. On December 17, the clearest day of the year, the sky is clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 69% of the time, and overcast or mostly cloudy 31% of the time.
The cloudier part of the year begins around April 17 and lasts for 4.9 months, ending around September 15. On June 16, the cloudiest day of the year, the sky is overcast or mostly cloudy 81% of the time, and clear, mostly clear, or partly cloudy 19% of the time.
Cloud Cover Categories
A wet day is one with at least 0.04 inches of liquid or liquid-equivalent precipitation. The chance of wet days in Okinawa varies significantly throughout the year.
The wetter season lasts 3.2 months, from March 20 to June 26, with a greater than 40% chance of a given day being a wet day. The chance of a wet day peaks at 57% on June 4.
The drier season lasts 8.8 months, from June 26 to March 20. The smallest chance of a wet day is 22% on December 17.
Among wet days, we distinguish between those that experience rain alone, snow alone, or a mixture of the two. Based on this categorization, the most common form of precipitation throughout the year is rain alone, with a peak probability of 57% on June 4.
Daily Chance of Precipitation
To show variation within the months and not just the monthly totals, we show the rainfall accumulated over a sliding 31-day period centered around each day of the year. Okinawa experiences extreme seasonal variation in monthly rainfall.
Rain falls throughout the year in Okinawa. The most rain falls during the 31 days centered around June 3, with an average total accumulation of 10.1 inches.
The least rain falls around December 28, with an average total accumulation of 1.8 inches.
Average Monthly Rainfall
The length of the day in Okinawa varies over the course of the year. In 2017, the shortest day is December 22, with 10 hours, 29 minutes of daylight; the longest day is June 21, with 13 hours, 48 minutes of daylight.
Hours of Daylight and Twilight
The earliest sunrise is at 5:35 AM on June 9, and the latest sunrise is 1 hour, 43 minutes later at 7:18 AM on January 12. The earliest sunset is at 5:36 PM on November 30, and the latest sunset is 1 hour, 49 minutes later at 7:25 PM on July 2.
Daylight saving time (DST) is not observed in Okinawa during 2017.
Sunrise & Sunset with Twilight
We base the humidity comfort level on the dew point, as it determines whether perspiration will evaporate from the skin, thereby cooling the body. Lower dew points feel drier and higher dew points feel more humid. Unlike temperature, which typically varies significantly between night and day, dew point tends to change more slowly, so while the temperature may drop at night, a muggy day is typically followed by a muggy night.
Okinawa experiences extreme seasonal variation in the perceived humidity.
The muggier period of the year lasts for 7.9 months, from March 26 to November 22, during which time the comfort level is muggy, oppressive, or miserable at least 28% of the time. The muggiest day of the year is July 29, with muggy conditions 100% of the time.
The least muggy day of the year is January 13, with muggy conditions 3% of the time.
Humidity Comfort Levels
This section discusses the wide-area hourly average wind vector (speed and direction) at 10 meters above the ground. The wind experienced at any given location is highly dependent on local topography and other factors, and instantaneous wind speed and direction vary more widely than hourly averages.
The average hourly wind speed in Okinawa experiences significant seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The windier part of the year lasts for 5.9 months, from September 27 to March 23, with average wind speeds of more than 14.4 miles per hour. The windiest day of the year is December 2, with an average hourly wind speed of 16.7 miles per hour.
The calmer time of year lasts for 6.1 months, from March 23 to September 27. The calmest day of the year is May 22, with an average hourly wind speed of 12.2 miles per hour.
Average Wind Speed
The predominant average hourly wind direction in Okinawa varies throughout the year.
The wind is most often from the east for 1.2 months, from April 16 to May 23 and for 2.1 months, from August 1 to October 5, with a peak percentage of 45% on September 27. The wind is most often from the south for 2.3 months, from May 23 to August 1, with a peak percentage of 69% on June 27. The wind is most often from the north for 6.4 months, from October 5 to April 16, with a peak percentage of 65% on January 1.
Okinawa is located near a large body of water (e.g., ocean, sea, or large lake). This section reports on the wide-area average surface temperature of that water.
The average water temperature experiences some seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The time of year with warmer water lasts for 3.4 months, from June 25 to October 5, with an average temperature above 81°F. The day of the year with the warmest water is July 30, with an average temperature of 84°F.
The time of year with cooler water lasts for 3.6 months, from January 1 to April 19, with an average temperature below 73°F. The day of the year with the coolest water is February 24, with an average temperature of 71°F.
Average Water Temperature
Best Time of Year to Visit
To characterize how pleasant the weather is in Okinawa throughout the year, we compute two travel scores.
The tourism score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 65°F and 80°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Okinawa for general outdoor tourist activities is from early October to mid December, with a peak score in the last week of October.
The beach/pool score favors clear, rainless days with perceived temperatures between 75°F and 90°F. Based on this score, the best time of year to visit Okinawa for hot-weather activities is from mid September to late October, with a peak score in the first week of October.
For each hour between 8:00 AM and 9:00 PM of each day in the analysis period (1980 to 2016), independent scores are computed for perceived temperature, cloud cover, and total precipitation. Those scores are combined into a single hourly composite score, which is then aggregated into days, averaged over all the years in the analysis period, and smoothed.
Our cloud cover score is 10 for fully clear skies, falling linearly to 9 for mostly clear skies, and to 1 for fully overcast skies.
Our precipitation score, which is based on the three-hour precipitation centered on the hour in question, is 10 for no precipitation, falling linearly to 9 for trace precipitation, and to 0 for 0.04 inches of precipitation or more.
Our tourism temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 50°F, rising linearly to 9 for 65°F, to 10 for 75°F, falling linearly to 9 for 80°F, and to 1 for 90°F or hotter.
Our beach/pool temperature score is 0 for perceived temperatures below 65°F, rising linearly to 9 for 75°F, to 10 for 82°F, falling linearly to 9 for 90°F, and to 1 for 100°F or hotter.
Definitions of the growing season vary throughout the world, but for the purposes of this report, we define it as the longest continuous period of non-freezing temperatures (≥ 32°F) in the year (the calendar year in the Northern Hemisphere, or from July 1 until June 30 in the Southern Hemisphere).
Temperatures in Okinawa are sufficiently warm year round that it is not entirely meaningful to discuss the growing season in these terms. We nevertheless include the chart below as an illustration of the distribution of temperatures experienced throughout the year.
Time Spent in Various Temperature Bands and the Growing Season
Growing degree days are a measure of yearly heat accumulation used to predict plant and animal development, and defined as the integral of warmth above a base temperature, discarding any excess above a maximum temperature. In this report, we use a base of 50°F and a cap of 86°F.
Growing Degree Days
This section discusses the total daily incident shortwave solar energy reaching the surface of the ground over a wide area, taking full account of seasonal variations in the length of the day, the elevation of the Sun above the horizon, and absorption by clouds and other atmospheric constituents. Shortwave radiation includes visible light and ultraviolet radiation.
The average daily incident shortwave solar energy experiences some seasonal variation over the course of the year.
The brighter period of the year lasts for 3.3 months, from June 17 to September 27, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter above 5.1 kWh. The brightest day of the year is July 22, with an average of 5.5 kWh.
The darker period of the year lasts for 2.4 months, from November 20 to February 1, with an average daily incident shortwave energy per square meter below 3.6 kWh. The darkest day of the year is December 27, with an average of 3.2 kWh.
Average Daily Incident Shortwave Solar Energy
For the purposes of this report, the geographical coordinates of Okinawa are 26.336 deg latitude, 127.801 deg longitude, and 167 ft elevation.
The topography within 2 miles of Okinawa contains only modest variations in elevation, with a maximum elevation change of 400 feet and an average elevation above sea level of 233 feet. Within 10 miles contains only modest variations in elevation (715 feet). Within 50 miles contains significant variations in elevation (1,650 feet).
The area within 2 miles of Okinawa is covered by cropland (71%) and trees (14%), within 10 miles by water (75%) and cropland (13%), and within 50 miles by water (96%).
This report illustrates the typical weather in Okinawa, based on a statistical analysis of historical hourly weather reports and model reconstructions from January 1, 1980 to December 31, 2016.
Temperature and Dew Point
There are 3 weather stations near enough to contribute to our estimation of the temperature and dew point in Okinawa.
For each station, the records are corrected for the elevation difference between that station and Okinawa according to the International Standard Atmosphere , and by the relative change present in the MERRA-2 satellite-era reanalysis between the two locations.
The estimated value at Okinawa is computed as the weighted average of the individual contributions from each station, with weights proportional to the inverse of the distance between Okinawa and a given station.
The stations contributing to this reconstruction are: Kadena Air Base (80%, 3.8 kilometers, northwest); Marine Corps Air Station Futenma (20%, 9 kilometers, southwest); and Okinoerabu Airport (0.3%, 151 kilometers, northeast).
All data relating to the Sun's position (e.g., sunrise and sunset) are computed using astronomical formulas from the book, Astronomical Tables of the Sun, Moon and Planets , by Jean Meeus.
All other weather data, including cloud cover, precipitation, wind speed and direction, and solar flux, come from NASA's MERRA-2 Modern-Era Retrospective Analysis . This reanalysis combines a variety of wide-area measurements in a state-of-the-art global meteorological model to reconstruct the hourly history of weather throughout the world on a 50-kilometer grid.
Land Use data comes from the Global Land Cover SHARE database , published by the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.
Elevation data comes from the Shuttle Radar Topography Mission (SRTM) , published by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory.
Names, locations, and time zones of places and some airports come from the GeoNames Geographical Database .
Time zones for aiports and weather stations are provided by AskGeo.com .
Maps are © Esri, with data from National Geographic, Esri, DeLorme, NAVTEQ, UNEP-WCMC, USGS, NASA, ESA, METI, NRCAN, GEBCO, NOAA, and iPC.
The information on this site is provided as is, without any assurances as to its accuracy or suitability for any purpose. Weather data is prone to errors, outages, and other defects. We assume no responsibility for any decisions made on the basis of the content presented on this site.
We draw particular cautious attention to our reliance on the MERRA-2 model-based reconstructions for a number of important data series. While having the tremendous advantages of temporal and spatial completeness, these reconstructions: (1) are based on computer models that may have model-based errors, (2) are coarsely sampled on a 50 km grid and are therefore unable to reconstruct the local variations of many microclimates, and (3) have particular difficulty with the weather in some coastal areas, especially small islands.
We further caution that our travel scores are only as good as the data that underpin them, that weather conditions at any given location and time are unpredictable and variable, and that the definition of the scores reflects a particular set of preferences that may not agree with those of any particular reader.