Okinawa Guide: Nago Pineapple Park
Nago Pineapple Park ナゴパイナップルパーク
Nago Pineapple Park is a theme-park dedicated to pineapples and other tropical fruits in Nago on the main island of Okinawa.
Pineapples were first commercially grown on Okinawa on Ishigaki Island from the 1930's. Recently cheaper imports have meant pineapple cultivation has decreased drastically from over 100,000 tons in 1969 to only 6,000 tons in 2012, so Nago Pineapple Park is a worthy PR project for all things Okinawan pineapple.
The tour of the small park begins from the car park on the trolley bus (pictured above) and a short tour of some pineapple fields with an explanation (in Japanese) on the history of the fruit, which spread to Asia from the Americas after Europeans arrived in the New World in the late 15th century.
The trolley bus drops visitors off at the main entrance to pay and choose either walking in the tropical garden with its banana, papaya and other tropical plants or driving in a pineapple shaped golf cart.
There's also an interesting collection of sea shells housed in a small museum.
The rest of the park is dedicated to selling pineapple products and pineapple souvenirs in all their various forms in a shop area.
There are lots of free samples on offer of fresh pineapple, dried pineapple, pineapple juice, pineapple cakes, even pineapple wine.
The Palm Tree restaurant in the park serves a variety of Okinawan food including taco rice, ginger agu pork and goya champuru. Pineapple parfait is for dessert!
Nago Pineapple Park Access
Nago Pineapple Park is located in the Motobu Peninsula near Nago town close to the Orion Happy Park and Nago Museum. It is around 35-40 minutes to both Churaumi Aquarium and Nakijin Castle by car from Nago Pineapple Park. The Neo Park Okinawa bird and animal zoo is about 10 minutes by car.
There are various buses from the Bus Terminal in Naha to Nago Bus Terminal including the #20, #22 and #77 as well as the #111 and #120 from Naha Airport. From Nago Bus Terminal there are then infrequent #70 and #76 buses to Meio Daigaku Iriguchi (about 20 minutes; 390 yen).
Like most sites in Okinawa, rental car is the most convenient, however. Take the Okinawa expressway until its end and then highway 58 and local roads to the park.
1195 Bimata, Nago City
Tel: 098 0533659
Pineapple Park is open all year round 9am-6pm. Entrance is 850 yen for adults, 600 yen for junior high school students and 450 yen for elementary school students.