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Picture above Maeda Point (bottom part - parking lot, visitor's center, steps to dive site all visible) and Maeda Flats (top of picture)

Diving, Snorkeling, & Reef Walking at Maeda Flats, Okinawa Japan

Recommended for:  Good views, great diving & snorkeling (& less crowded than Maeda Point)

Located next to Cape Maeda
~30-45 mins (from Kadena AB gate 1); directly north on highway 58   

    Directions (at bottom of page)

Maeda Flats Dive Review

Entry:  Flat, no stairs or rough coral entry like you have at Maeda Point (next door).
Recommended skill level: 
not recommended for your very first dive; mid-range skills
Depth Tide-dependent, though much more shallow for a good distance out.
VisibilityCrystal clear.
Animal life you might see here stingray, large variety of fish.
Recommended for snorkelingYes.  Excellent snorkeling here.
Special Notes & Cautions about diving here:

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Popular dive spots, snorkeling locations & nearby attractions

Important phone numbers
Torii Scuba Locker - 644-4290
Kadena Marina scuba locker 634-6344 / 6968

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Detailed Review   
Fantastic, secluded, slightly out of the way beach (don't expect to find much in the way of amenities) - and separated from the larger crowds at well-known Maeda Point.  Maeda Flats sits in a protected cove around the corner from Maeda Point.  Sand is soft here, though I'd bring watershoes for reef walking.  At low tide, a huge reef is revealing that you can can walk along and view all sorts of animals caught in tide pools that you'd usually only see in an aquarium or while scuba diving.

For scuba divers and snorkelers - a swim over the reefs yields awesome visibility (sometimes exceeding 100 feet) and an excellent view of all sorts of marinelife.  Comparatively, the deep sandy floor next door has decreased visibility, but you may catch a glimpse of local stingray known to relax here.  At high tide, you can snorkel or scuba dive (quite shallow) over the reef.  At low tide, the reef is uncovered and great on foot.

Directions
Take Hwy 58 northbound.  When you reach the "Renaissance Hotel", take a hard left onto Hwy 6.  Within 3 miles, look for a white "Maeda Misaki" sign.  Turn here, then turn left just before the parking lot.  To get to the  dive site, wade in at the small beach.