Kayaking & Canoeing

“Sabani” Wooden Sailboat Shipbuilding and Sailing Experience: One-day Tour to Yanbaru in Okinawa

Trees grown in the mountains are transformed into boats which are then taken out to the sea. This is a hands-on program that allows visitors to learn about Okinawa's long-established maritime culture by experiencing a part of this process with a shipbuilder.


8+ hours


July to August


Ogimi Village, Okinawa

Group size

3 to 3 persons




39,000 JPY

Kammui Style:



邊土名 徹平 Hentona Teppei

邊土名 徹平 Hentona Teppei

Director of Hentona Sabani, shipbuilder, and Okinawa wooden boat culture guide


In the morning, you will learn how to build a boat directly from a shipbuilder and will experience shipbuilding through processes such as "hondou and “takefuzu-nage," a traditional process of joining wood to wood without using metal. In the afternoon, you will go out to sea on a Sabani boat and experience rowing while catching the wind in the sails. You will also have a chance to control the ship from the captain's seat while setting the course.

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Hosted by 邊土名 徹平 Hentona Teppei
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08:50 Meet at HENTONA SABANI (about a 2-hour drive from Naha Airport) 09:00 Shipbuilding experience at the shipyard (3 hours) 1) Explanation of the shipbuilding process from the groundbreaking ceremony to the launch ceremony. (2) Woodworking using saws, chisels, spoon chisels, and other traditional tools. You will learn to use "hundo" wooden saws and "takefuzu" bamboo nails. 12:00 Lunch break (1 hour) 13:00 Sailing experience in Shioya Bay and surrounding waters (5 hours) (1) Basic explanation of how the hull behaves when sailing on a Sabani. (2) Rowing by holding the "tina” (reins to control the sail) and "eke” (wooden paddle) with both hands. You will learn how to maneuver the Sabani by using the wind from the sails and paddles. If there is no wind on the day of the tour, you will experience cruising around the surrounding waters by paddling with an eke. 18:00 Ends


This tour is for those who are interested in the shipbuilding process, woodworking, and shiphandling methods related to Sabani and would like to try it for themselves. 16 years and older. No experience necessary.


What to bring: towel, change of clothes, swimsuit, and water shoes. We will provide the shipbuilding tools.


There are no restrooms in the vicinity of the shipyard where we will meet, so please use the restroom before coming. The nearest restroom is about 2 minutes away by car.

Access info

Approximately 2 hours by car from Naha Airport

Pick up


Nearest station

Naha Airport

Meeting place


If you come by car

2 hours