Travel Journal

Yakushima (Japan)

(Saturday 10 November 2007) by Lynda
I already did hear great stories about the island Yakushima when I was in South Korea so I wanted to see it for myself. Everybody says it rains 35 days a month
Old sugi (cedar tree) in Shiratani Unsuikyo
Old sugi (cedar tree) in Shiratani Unsuikyo
and indeed, when I got off the ferry it was just pouring with rain and it didn`t stop for 2 days. So my first two days on the island were very wet but still very impressive.

On my first day I hiked through the Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine, and because of the abundant rainfall many fans and mosses grow there. It was also the background for a very famous Japanese movie.....sorry forgot the name but I will check it on the internet and want to see it when I get back home. Because of the rain and fog the whole place was very mysterious, almost magical and full of massive Cedar trees, some of them more than 2,000 years old. It was a great day, the only annoying thing was waiting for the bus back to the guesthouse for 1,5 hour and I was really soaking wet..... but luckily..... there is always the onsen in Japan. Onsen is a shared bathroom with a big tube filled with hot water where you can soak until you see red, great experience.
Ohko-no-taki waterfall
Ohko-no-taki waterfall

On my second day I went to see the waterfalls. They were both great because of the rainfall in the last couple of days and yes, I was again hiking in the rain. Luckily it was just long enough dry to shoot some nice pictures and I got a hike back to town from a nice lady, so no waiting this time.

On the morning of my third day on the island it was an amazing blue sky so I took a bicycle to explore the south-eastern part of the island..... and of course as a real duchy....i forgot all about mountains and expected the island to be as flat as a (dutch) pancake. But I made it, all the way to Ohko-no-taki waterfall, the biggest waterfall on the island. And I got a really nice tan so the hardship was again worth it!

On my last day I went to Yakusugi Cedar Land to see more Cedar trees. This day it didn`t rain but the whole park was covered in clouds, so again a very mysterious hike in the forest. Unfortunately again no monkeys today.... everybody I meet on the island keeps telling me that the monkey`s are everywhere but I think they are hiding for me!!!!!

Yakoshima was a great experience even with the rain and I`m glad I went there.

  • Some catching up to do by Rianne

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