Yakushima? I barely know ‘er! 英会話・英語 アミック
Fresh off a recent trip to Tokyo I have already started looking forward to my next travel bout. I stumbled upon a Wikipedia page about World Heritage Sites in Japan and discovered Yakushima.
Yakushima is an island off the southern coast of Kyushu. The island has been a World Heritage Site since 1993 because it is home to a massive ancient forest. Although Yakushima has many different types of flora and fauna, it’s Japanese Cedar trees are the real crowd pleaser; some are thought to be 2300 years old! Although many people suffer with hay fever from cedar trees, that’s not enough to stop 300,000 tourists from visiting the island each year.While these trees were logged for many years during the Edo period, commercial logging of the island was banned in the 1960s and the trees have been replanted. Additionally, Yakushima is home to the largest nesting ground for loggerhead sea turtles. The island is also home to macaques, deer, weasels, and the surrounding waters are full of dolphins and coral reefs.
Before you pack your bags and head out, you should be aware that the route to Yakushima can be challenging. There’s two different ferry services available to get there, but no cars are allowed on the island. Yakushima also has a small airport with two flights a day. Hiking to the top of Yakushima’s many peaks is extremely popular with tourists, but make sure to pack appropriate clothing. Yakushima is known as “Japan’s Wettest Place”, so a raincoat and water-proof boots are a must especially in June!
Fun fact: Yakushima is the inspiration for the forest settings in Princess Mononoke! So what do you think? Should I go??