Yakushima - Explore Yakushima

We spent an amazing 36 days in Japan! We did a lot of traveling, and we went back and forth between a lot of locations, cities, and districts. To make things easier to read and write, we have grouped everything in our travels into city locations and not exactly by time. The Japan list of contents so far can be found here!

By far the most amazing part of our Japan adventure was the magical island of Yakushima. We arrived in Yakushima by boat and we spent 4 days in Yakushima, driving around the entire island and exploring as much as we could during our time there.

* Sankara Hotel & Spa - our home during our stay in Yakushima
* Explore Yakushima - Exploring the local area near Sankara Hotel and the port - Yakushima Life: Botanical Research Park, Wakashio Sushi
* Hike Yakushima - Hiking the Yakushima forest the area that served as the inspiration for Studio Ghibli's Princess Mononoke - Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine
* Drive Yakushima - We spent a full day driving around the entire island of Yakushima stopping. Lots of Yakushika (Yakushima deer) and Yakuzaru (Yakushima Monkeys) were seen

Exporing the local area around Sankara Hotel & Spa brings you right into the wilderness of the mountains. The gates around the hotel are lined with signs warning of the electrical fence built to keep wild monkeys out. Walking beyond the gates is like walking into what I imagine would be like walking in the Amazon forest. Lush vegetation with tall trees blocking out the sunlight.
Small dams, waterways and rivers carve through the mountain to the towns for their agriculture needs and water.
Large waterfalls flow off the mountains in the distance.
Away from the forest and mountain lines the local population grows food where many different species of birds gather to feast on bugs and vegetation.
Some gather to feast on other birds.
We noticed a botanical garden off the main road when exploring, and found out it was the Yakushima Botanical Research Park. The 5 dollar entrance fee allowed us on to the grounds to look around.
We ventured to the large port of entry for Yakushima to explore the small town. We wanted to try sushi on the island, but the number 1 sushi joint was closed due to the chef out fishing for the day so we picked the number 2 location.
Wakashio Sushi - 若潮寿司

We dined on a small vension salad (given to us for free once we ordered) and a sushi plate (ordered). It was not bad, better than what we had at home, but the location owners were heavy smokers and it showed. It seemed to be a family shop and they were a bit suprised to see us. While the elderly woman who served us was polite, and helpful, the sushi chef seemed a bit irritated by our presence. If you are in Yakushima looking for sushi, we would skip this location.