Melody Road

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CONTRIBUTED BY AMY MADDOCKS

Melody Road l Okinawa Hai

Melody Road l Okinawa HaiGet ready to be “wowed,” my friends—or at least impressed a bit. If you haven’t heard of Melody Road yet, you are missing out! Up north in a little town called Futami, in Nago City, there is a section of the road that has had lines cut into the concrete that play a song if you drive over them at the right speed. The village is very proud of this road, as you will plainly see by the loving care they have taken of that particular strip of road, going so far as to decorate the concrete barrier on the side with beautiful flowers and plants. 

Melody Road l Okinawa HaiThe tune you will hear played comes from a love story. As it is told, a man and woman sing of love and trials, and how they long to be together forever. The song begins by describing a beautiful place between a mountain and the sea, and it is here that the couple wishes to be married and spend eternity together, forgetting about war and hardship. This place was called Futami. The song was written by two Okinawans who were forced to leave Itoman and relocate during the war. They settled in Futami and the folk song, called Futami Jowa, was created. In November of 2012, 67 years after the original song was created, Melody Road was open to the public. 

To hear the song, make sure you are traveling north (the grooves are only on one side of the road) and drive at around 40 KPH. The song begins at the blue music symbol painted on the road, and there is a small dirt turn-around right next to the music symbol if you are traveling the opposite direction and need to turn around. Make sure your windows are down and you’ll be able to hear the song. If you are like me, you’ll turn around and do it several times! Also, we noticed while we were parked in the turn-around location, that you can even hear the song being played as other cars drive by. Another treat for the senses! 

As a last little bonus, if you are a Geocacher, we placed a cache in the area so you would be inspired to get a cache, hear a little music, and be a part of something extraordinary!

Melody Road l Okinawa HaiDirections: Take highway 329 north into Nago City, and then turn right onto highway 331. After you pass through two tunnels, take your first left. You’ll need to pass the song and turn around in order to hear it. If you are a Geocacher, follow your GPS and it will lead you to the starting point!

For a more detailed article on the history of the song, go to http://www.mapitokinawa.com/2013/01/melody-road-futami-nago-city.html

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9 Comments
  • June 9, 2013

    We decided to find this road on our way to Okuma today and we are so glad we did! We drove over it 4 times and our kids loved it! I thought it was funny that our 13 year old (our oldest) was the most impressed. His exact comment was, “The Japanese are amazing! They make cool robots and musical roads!” Thanks so much for sharing this road with us!

    LaLa
    Reply
    • June 16, 2013

      LaLa, that’s awesome! I felt the same way–I’ve been over that road many times now. :)

      Reply
  • June 11, 2013

    Cool. I’ve heard about these before but I didn’t know that had them here. I guess we will need to go and find it!

    Amanda
    Reply
  • June 20, 2013

    Thanks for this! We loved it!!

    ReBekha
    Reply
  • July 5, 2013

    I LOVE melody road! I’m going to have to go back and find that cache now though :)

    Erin
    Reply
  • November 12, 2013

    Myself and a few friends just traveled here this weekend. What a great little trip! We made several trips across the road just for fun. Directions were great and made it easy to find. The hotel at the top of the hill really is creepy. We braved it and drove up a little closer!!!

    Heather
    Reply
  • December 26, 2013

    ** DIRECTION NOTICE**

    Directions above in main blog were really confusing to us as we just did this today….If you are taking the 58 North towards Nago you will take a Right on to Hwy 329 (Look for the Bluebell as your landmark to turn…..will be on your left if your heading north on the 58).

    From there you will travel for several miles on the 329 up the hill and down and will see Hwy 331 on your LEFT (not right as stated above). You will than pass through the 2 tunnels and after 2nd tunnel take the first left( the bay/water will be on your left)…..Now this is where you have to look for the blue Melody landmark…..it is on the opposite side of road. (have someone in the car look for the blue melody marker or can miss it like we did as there is only one) Turn around once you get to the bottom of the hill going up and go the opposite way. You will than see the “one” blue melody mark and this starts the music……..Hope the updated directions help.

    brent B
    Reply
    • December 27, 2013

      Brent B, I’m sorry my directions were confusing. When I wrote the article, I didn’t give directions from the 58. Nago encompasses a very large portion of land, which includes the east side. If you follow my directions coming up the east side of the island on the 329, the directions I gave are correct. I should have made that clear in my article, and I apologize for that. Either way, I’m glad you were able to find the road and hope enjoyed it. :)

      Reply
    • February 4, 2014

      Just for clarification: North on 329, about 2 1/2 – 3 Km after you pass Camp Schwab is 331.

      Reply