|Native name: 竹富島
Street on Taketomi Island
|Archipelago||Ryukyu Islands (Yaeyama Islands)|
|Area||5.42 km2 (2.09 sq mi)|
|Length||3.4 km (2.11 mi)|
|Width||2.7 km (1.68 mi)|
|Highest elevation||21 m (69 ft)|
|Population||323 (as of January 2012)|
Taketomi Island (竹富島 Taketomi-jima?, Yaeyama: Teedun Okinawan: Dakidun) is an island in the Yaeyama District of Okinawa Prefecture, Japan. Taketomi is one of the Yaeyama Islands. The population of Taketomi Island was 323 as of January 2012.
Taketomi Island is located 4 kilometres (2.5 mi) south of Ishigaki Island. The island has a village in the center, also named Taketomi. The island covers 5.42 square kilometres (2.09 sq mi), and runs 2.7 kilometres (1.7 mi) east to west and 3.4 kilometres (2.1 mi) north to south. Taketomi is a raised coral atoll. The island is circular in shape, and is surrounded by coral reefs. Taketomi Island is part of Iriomote-Ishigaki National Park, established in 1972.
Taketomi is known for its "traditional Okinawan" houses, stone walls, and sandy streets, making it popular with tourists. Various rules are in place to prevent the more aesthetically displeasing aspects of modern construction from ruining the beauty of the island, such as replacing concrete walls with hand-packed stone. Popular tourist activities include relaxing at the beach, snorkeling, taking an ox-cart ride through the village, and simply walking or biking around the island while enjoying the quaintness of the village and the natural scenery.
It is recognized in academics that Taketomi's "traditional" landscape is a modern product. Today Taketomi's houses are known for visually appealing red-tiled roofs. However, commoners were prohibited from building houses with roof tiles by Ryūkyū on Okinawa until its abolishment. The red-roofed house first appeared on Taketomi Island in 1905 and remained a symbol of wealth for decades. As late as in 1964, truly traditional thatched houses accounted for 40% of Taketomi's houses. Red-tiled roofs spread in parallel with the conservation movement.
Taketomi Island is accessible by a ten-minute boat ride from Ishigaki Island. All areas of the island are within walking distance. There are also various places to rent bicycles in the village.
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