Yakushima Island

Just next door from where we live is another little island called Yakushima. Its quite well known and its a world heritage site. It has become quite popular since the release of the Princess Mononoke animation by Gibli which based the forest visuals on the island’s moss forests with its over thousand year old trees. The trees here grow very slowly because they are exposed to constant humidity and cold. They grow at an altitude of around 1000 meters and are mostly covered in mist and clouds. The trees are virtually waterproof and don’t rot, that is why still to date they are harvesting the stumps left over from felling over 100 years ago. The island is only 30km away from where we live but the climate, the wildlife and the vegetation are completely different. Monkeys and deer run wild everywhere and are not bothered by either cars or people. We felt like we traveled to a far away northern mountain region not the neighboring subtropical pacific island.


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