Okinawa Tourism Information:PhotographingFirefliesinIshigaki.(HiroshiKuwamura'sphotocolumn15th)

Photographing Fireflies in Ishigaki. (Hiroshi Kuwamura's photo column 15th)

post : 2016.06.25 18:00

I am usually working as a photographer it is thought that there is not much work in rainy season., but impressive photos will be taken only in rainy season. It is fireflies watching.

One of the popular spots of watching fireflies in main island of Okinawa is Sueyoshi Park, Naha. I introduce spots in Ishigaki and Iriomote this time.

Ishigaki island is recommended if you go watching fireflies for the first time. Typical fireflies in Ishigaki is "Yaeyama Hime Botaru". Some photos of fireflies are shown.

Banna Park is a popular spot to watch fireflies in Ishigaki. It takes about 20 minutes drive from Ishigaki Air Port, and 10 minutes drive from Ishigaki Port. Entering west gate of Banna Park to D zone, and park(if you drive) at parking lot of D building. Soon you will see the path called "Hotaru Yuhodo"(Fireflies path). You can also pick up a map of the park at administrative office at south gate.

Tips of photographing good photos is to prepare settings during  daytime. What you have to do is to decide location(where you position and what background you want) before fireflies start lighting. Hand lights or other lights are not available during on-camera because fireflies won't light, so you need to complete settings before darken. It is better to be strand by 30 minutes prior to on-camera if you can.

Please do not use insect deterrent sprays. It can damage insects and off cause fireflies too. An effective method to prevent insects is to wear long-sleeve shirt and put towel on your neck if you have issues with insects.

Essential functions of camera are manual settings, (single-lens reflex camera recommended), bright lens(small f stop like F2.8), tripod stand, and remote controller. How exactly take photos won't be described this time but you can find the information at searching website. (please be aware that strobe lights can't be used)

Fireflies start lighting after sunset. Duration that they light is about 30 minutes, so preparation is important. If it rains the day before or earlier time on the same day, you might be able to see more fireflies. (Please be careful with habu)

The blinking period of Yaeyama hime botaru is short, so the spots are fantastic and lined like above photo. It might be hard to take photos like this. Please keep trying a couple of days if you have chance. Even just to watch they are flying is incredibly beautiful.

Shooting spot in Ishigaki: Banna Park
Address: 961-15, Ishigaki-city, Okinawa

Okinawa CLIP Photographer/Writer Hiroshi Kuwamura