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Yakushima is an island situated approximately 60 km south from the southern end of Osumi Peninsula in the southern part of Kagoshima Prefecture.

One fifth of the island is registered as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.

Landscape and weather

There are as many as six mountain peaks over 1,800 m high including Miyanoura-dake (1,935 m above sea level), the highest mountain in Kyushu, and this is what gives the island its other name — the 'Alps on the Ocean'.

Interestingly, the island is said to have one of the world's highest precipitation rates, with the heaviest rainfall in spring and summer.

Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine

Bridge and river, Yakusugi Cedar LandThe island's main draw is the Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine forest which is home to the abundant Yakusugi cedar trees which gave the island its UNESCO listing in 1994. Some of the cedars are said to be older than 5,000 years and have been given individual names, such as the oldest cedar, the Jomon-sugi.

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Map of Yakushima

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    Places near Yakushima