Tropical Island for Sale in Okinawa
This is a privately-owned freehold island just offshore of Iriomote Island in Okinawa Prefecture. Ubanari Island, which is shaped like a footprint, is almost 37,000 sqm in size (9 acres) and is approximately 400 meters long and 100-200 meters wide. The island is special enough to have its own Wikipedia page (in Japanese).
The island, which is closer to Taiwan than Okinawa, is uninhabited. Depending on the tide, it is possible to walk over from Iriomote Island.
It was originally named “Afuri Island” but local residents referred to it as “Aujima”. There are also records of it being called “Aurito” and “Auri”. Following World War II, local residents used this small island for goat farming. To the east of the island is the Yonara Strait where Manta rays can be found.
Iriomote Island has a population of just 2,000 residents but tourist numbers to the island in 2003 topped 150,000.
It is possible to purchase uninhabited islands in Japan and prices vary widely. The procedure for purchasing an island is the same as purchasing land. The approximately cost to build a small house and install basic utilities is estimated at 50 million Yen. According to regional development guidelines, the maximum development for this site would be 1,000 ~ 3,000 sqm in size.
Three ferry companies operate high speed ferries between Iriomote and Ishigaki Island. Boats depart every 30 minutes from Ishigaki Port to Uehara Port (2000 yen, high speed ferry 40-50 minutes) in the north of Iriomote, and Ohara Port (1540 yen, high speed ferry 35-40 minutes) in the south. Car ferries are available, and it is also possible to rent a car from several outlets near the ferry terminals. There is also a public bus service on the main island.
- Price: 500,000,000 Yen (6.4 million USD)
- Land: 36,799.00 sqm
- Land ownership: Freehold
- Maximum land elevation: 17 meters
- Area of Ocean: South China Sea
- Utilities: None
Editor’s Note: Zoe Ward is the publisher of Japan Property Central and has extensive experience in the Tokyo real estate market, working for some of the advertising agents on Real Estate Japan. Photos courtesy of Zoe Ward.