Visitors are flocking to Okinawa Island, Japan, the largest of the 150 islands which make up Okinawa, a prefecture in the East China Sea between Taiwan and Japan's mainland.
“The number of visitors to the southern Japanese islands jumped 10.5 per cent in the year ended March 31 to a record 8.77 million people, according to Okinawa prefecture data. That compares with the 8.93 million that went to Hawaii in 2016, an increase of 2.9 per cent, Hawaii Tourism Authority data show,” Bloomberg reports.
The publication added: “The average growth rate in tourists was 10 per cent in Okinawa over the past five years, compared with 3 per cent in Hawaii.”
Miwako Date, the chief executive officer of Japanese developer Mori Trust says Okinawa could overtake Hawaii's visitor numbers very soon.
Martin Rinck, the Asia-Pacific president for Hilton Worldwide Holdings Inc., said in a news conference this month the figures were positive.
"I'm extremely positive about the tourism prospects of Okinawa."