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Yakushima Island

HOME > Japan’s Local Treasures > Yakushima Island


Ancient forests and rivers that never run dry, the ideal island for a nature break

Yakushima Town



Often called “the island of ancient forest and water” Yakushima Island’s diverse ecosystems and village lifestyles thrive on its unique natural water cycles.


Its mountainous terrain of millennia-old cedar trees sits in the path of Japan’s Kuroshio warm ocean current, elevating the saturated air to cooler heights, and producing regular heavy downpours. Kuroshio brings with it tiny organisms that spawn into marine life around the island, as its water runs into rivers to return to the sea.


With 78 species of endemic plants, other flora and shores teeming with sea life, villagers on Yakushima Island enjoy a plentiful bounty of seafood and edible plants. But the water cycle also plays another important role in their everyday life. Most of Yakushima’s electricity is hydroelectric, making it ideal island for for eco-friendly stays.



How to get there


By air: 40 minutes from Kagoshima Airport, 95 minutes from Itami Airport or 70 minutes from Fukuoka Airport.

By boat: about 1 hour 50 minutes - 2 hours 45 minutes from Kagoshima Port South Pier by high-speed ship or 4 hours from Kagoshima Port.



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