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Special Page about Amami-Oshima Island at japan-guide.com

It is the time to plan your travels to Amami-Oshima Island !

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Shinonomenosato Ajisai kyo

Shinonomenosato Ajisai Kyo is a vast, 16.5ha/40.8ac garden utilizing the natural landscape of the mountain. 

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It is said to be the largest of its kind in the country, and over 100,000 flowers of hydrangea in 160 different types beautifully bloom here on the premises around mid June every year. 

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December brings foliages, turning the entire mountainous region in red and yellow. It makes it a popular scenic location for foliage viewing.

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Perfect for spending a relaxing time, the premises is equipped with an exhibition gallery displaying ceramic art works by the owner of the garden and a tea house surving some meals.

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[ Inquiries ]
0996-68-2133 (kanko_c@city.izumi.kagoshima.jp)

[ Fees ]
Admissions: 500yen during hydrangea season, 300yen during autumn foliage season

[ Closed ]
Irregular (open everyday during hydrangea season)

[ Hours ]
9am-5pm

[ Parking ]
about 30 vehicles

[ Access ]
JR: Izumi Station/Hisatsu Orange Railway Izumi Station → approx. 25 min. by taxi
Car: Minamikyushu Expressway Ashikita IC → approx. 40 min. toward Izumi City
Kyushu Expressway Hitoyoshi IC → approx. 40 min. toward Okuchi/Izumi

Izumi NAVI >>
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Area guide : Hokusatsu area >>

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Cherry Blossom Viewing (areas excluding Kagoshima City)

Hanami is the traditional Japanese custom of enjoying the transient beauty of cherry blossoms sakura.

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People go to parks, gardens, or mountains to enjoy the view of cherry blossoms with their co-workers, family, and friends.

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Cherry trees come into full bloom from the end of February to early April, and ohanami places everywhere in Kagoshima will become crowded!

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【 Chiran Peace Park (Heiwa Park) 】 / Minamikyushu City
Scale: approx. 850 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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Access: Board the bus for Chiran from Yamakataya bus terminal in Kagoshima City (approx. 1.5 hour). Approximately 5 minutes on foot from Tokko-kannon-iriguchi bus stop. 

Inquiries: Minamikyushu Chiran Culture Center (Bunka Kaikan) +81-993-83-2111




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【 Mt. Uomi 】 / Ibusuki City
Scale: approx. 1,000 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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One can look out over Ibusuki City below, spy Chiringashima Island and Mt. Sakurajima floating on Kinko Bay, and even catch a glimpse of Osumi Peninsula from the peak of Mt. Uomi. 

Access: approx. 20 minutes by car from JR Ibusuki Station to the summit

Inquiries: Ibusuki City Hall Tourism Division +81-993-22-2111




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【 Maruoka Park 】 / Kirishima City
Scale: approx. 6,000 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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During peak season, many visitors come from within and beyond the prefecture to picnic here and enjoy the view.

Access: about 10 minutes by car from Osumiyokogawa Station on the JR Hisatsu Line

Inquiries: Maruoka Sakuraen +81-995-72-1362




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【 Kirishima Shrine 】 / Kirishima City
Scale: approx. 200 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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Access: about 10 minutes by bus from Kirishima-Jingu Station on the JR Nippo Line

Inquiries : Kirishima Shrine +81-995-57-0001




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【 Tadamoto Park 】 / Isa City
Scale: approx. 1,000 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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At Tadamoto Park, once selected as one of Japan's top 100 sakura-viewing locations, you can enjoy the various faces of cherry blossoms in the day time and night time. 

Access: about 90 minutes by car from Kagoshima City; about 30 minutes from Shibushi City; about 40 minutes from Miyakonojo City, Miyazaki Prefecture

Inquiries: Isa City Hall Regional Promotion Division +81-995-23-1311




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【 Michi no Eki Osumi Yagoro Densetsu no Sato 】 / Soo City
Scale: approx. 1,200 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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Within the grounds are a souvenir shop, the "Yagoro Pavilion" kurobuta pork restaurant, a giant Yagorodon statue standing 15 meters tall and weighing in at 39 tons, a playground, and a grassy open area. Each year a Sakura Matsuri is held to celebrate the colorful flowers as they reach full bloom.

Access: about 90 minutes by car from Kagoshima City; about 30 minutes from Shibushi City;  about 40 minutes from Miyakonojo City, Miyazaki Prefecture

Inquiries: Soo Municipal Council of Social Welfare Osumi Branch Office +81-99-482-0080


* February 20, 2014
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Cherry Blossom Viewing in Kagoshima City >>

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Cherry Blossom Viewing: Kagoshima City

Hanami is the traditional Japanese custom of enjoying the transient beauty of cherry blossoms sakura.

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People go to parks, gardens, or mountains to enjoy the view of cherry blossoms with their co-workers, family, and friends.

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Cherry trees come into full bloom from the end of February to early April, and ohanami places everywhere in Kagoshima will become crowded!

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【 Yoshino Park 】 
Scale: approx. 630 trees
Normal blooming season: late February - mid-April

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The site boasts 12 varieties of sakura,including three trees of the Kawazuzakura and Izuno Odoriko varieties which are rarely seen in Kagoshima. 

The best time to see them is late February, although other varieties of sakura bloom in turn until early April.

Access: Board the Yoshino Park bus at JR Kagoshima Chuo Station (25 min)

Inquiries: Yoshino Park +81-99-243-0155





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【 Isoyama Park 】 
Scale: approx. 250 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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Access: Board the Kagoshima City View bus and get off at Sengan-en-mae bus stop.

Inquiries: Sengan-en +81-99-247-1551



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【 Kotsuki Riverside 】 
Scale: approx. 500 trees
Normal blooming season: late March - early April

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Access: approx. 20 minutes from Kagoshima Chuo Station on foot

Inquiries: Kagoshima City Hall Parks and Greenery Division +81-99-216-1368


* February 13, 2014
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Area guide : Kagoshima City >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide" >> 

Power Spot Kagoshima: Yakushima


"power spot" is a place which gives energy to rejuvenate our hearts and bodies, and is very popular among women these days. There are several leading "power spots" in Kagoshima so let us check out some of them!

 

【 Yakushima 】 ~ World Natural Heritage - the Mystery of Nature 

Yakushima Island is the first Japanese site to be registered as a World Natural Heritage in 1993. With nature retained in its original primitive state while humans reside alongside it, Yakushima Island receives good appraisal as a role model in showcasing how human and nature can live in harmony. The circumference of the island is 132km. Located right in the middle of the island is Mount Miyanoura. Standing tall at 1,936m it is the highest peak in Kyushu and is also recognized as one of the "100 Famous Mountains of Japan".

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A well-known nature spot, Yakushima Island receives many visitors from within and abroad Japan daily, and it can be said that the whole island is in itself a power spot, with endless charms to offer.

 

We recommend these three power spots on Yakushima island.

First, Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine - this is the place which the forest in which Shishigami (a character in the animated movie "Princess Mononoke") resides is modelled after. After walking for about two hours, we arrive at a mysterious area covered by lush greenery, informally known as "the Forest of Princess Mononoke". The mysterious feeling of the place cannot be described in words. The forest is fully covered in moss and surrounded by Yakusugi (Japanese cedar trees more than a thousand years old), and one can enjoy seeing the different varieties of Yakusugi. Stopping once in a while to check out the mosses, one will be fascinated by their loveliness. Especially after a rain, the beauty of Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine is simply fascinating and will capture one's heart.

D-06.jpgSecond, the Jomonsugi Cedar. It takes 11 hours to travel to and fro the Jomonsugi cedar, which is said to be as old as 7,200 years old. It is a cedar tree worth a once a lifetime
visit. Some have said that seeing the Jomonsugi Cedar may change his or her perspective on life. Occasionally shrouded in mists, the majestic Jomonsugi Cedar has a commanding presence. There is much to learn from this Jomonsugi Cedar, which has protected and watched over the forest since ancient times. We recommend visiting the Yakusugi Museum, where you can see the "Branch of Life" - a branch which broke off after enduring the heavy weight of piled snow.

Yakusugi Museum http://www.yakusugi-museum.com/

2739-343, Anbo, Yakushima-cho, Kumage-gun, Kagoshima Prefecture, 891-4311

TEL: 0997-46-3113  FAX: 0997-46-3168


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The last recommendation is the Ohko-no-Taki Waterfall. To be able to view the powerful waterfall in close proximity is simply wonderful. Standing just 50m away, one can feel the speed and flow of the waterfall through the water spray. This is due to Yakushima Island being blessed with abundant rainfall. Showered in rich negative ions, one can immerse oneself in nature by stretching out on the rocky plain, enjoying the water spray and listening to the sound of the waterfall.

 

Yakushima Tourism Association http://yakukan.jp/

TEL: 0997-49-4010  FAX: 0997-49-4011

E-mail: info@yakukan.jp

Japan's Number 1 Crane Migratory Ground

This one-and-only scene is designated as a special natural monument of the nation.  
Every year between mid-October to December, more than 10,000 cranes come from Siberia to winter until March in Izumi, Japan's largest migratory ground.

The number and variety of migrating birds is said to be the highest in Japan, designated as "Kagoshima Prefecture's Cranes and their Migrating Grounds", a special natural monument.  

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Of course the sheer numbers alone is astonishing, but the elegant appearance of the cranes spreading their wings and taking to the skies as one can only be seen here and is a symbol of winter in Izumi.
 
The number of birds is at its highest between December and January but the cranes can be seen from November to March.  Last year a new record was set with more than 17,000 cranes counted. 

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During the wintering period, you can watch leisurely at any time to see the birds doing activities such as pecking at feed, mending their wings or dancing.

However, we recommend visiting the viewing platform between 6:30 to 7:00 in the morning to watch in the soft glow of sunrise as the cranes simultaneously take off from their nesting place in search of food. This beautiful and elegant sight is enough to take your breath away and is the highlight of the experience.

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If you want to watch the migrating cranes in Izumi, we recommend the Izumi City Crane Observation Center located right in front of the reclaimed land used as the crane's nesting ground.

While you view the cranes from the 2nd floor observation platform, you can also learn about the crane migratory ground.

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Also, if you want to know more about the cranes in detail, be sure to stop by Crane Park Izumi, Japan's only crane museum.

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December 1, 2016 (Thu) - February 28, 2017 (Tue) the "Crane Tour Bus" will be in operation, taking visitors from Izumi Station to the Crane Observation Center and Izumi's Samurai Residences. (1000 yen charge, you may board and disembark freely)

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[ E-mail ]
kanko_c@city.izumi.kagoshima.jp

Izumi NAVI >>
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Area guide : Hokusatsu area >>

Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

Facebook page : Kagoshima Travel Guide >>

Senbon Icho "A Thousand Ginkgo Trees"

There are some plants that give you a sense of the four seasons, such as cherry blossoms in spring and hydrangea in summer.

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At the end of summer you will find Japanese maples, Japanese pampas grass and Ginkgo Biloba, which make you feel the approach of autumn.

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In past few years, the lined ginkgo biloba trees in Tarumizu City, Kagoshima has become known as a great tourist attraction for enjoying autumn.

These lined ginkgo biloba trees are called "Senbon Icho", as there are over 1,000 ginkgo trees on the 45 hectare large site.

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This is the private land of "Cyuuman Yoshiaki", who planted these gingko biloba trees with his wife for over 35 years.

After working for a company for 22 years, he went to the mountain to cultivate the land, and opened it to the public for free in 2008.

Please visit this vast lined gingko biloba trees and enjoy autumn!

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The best time to visit is at the beginning of December.

It is a private land, so please strictly observe the rules and etiquette when you are here.

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View Larger Map
* October, 2016
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Area guide : Osumi >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide" >> 

One of the Few Crane Migration Grounds in the World

From mid October to mid November, more than 10,000 cranes each year pass the winter in an area called Izumi, which is in the north-west part of Kagoshima Prefecture.
After passing the winter they head back to the north. This place is rare in the world for its large numbers of wintering cranes.

・Izumi City Cranes Observation Center

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It is located in front of the cranes resting ground. On the 2nd floor in this building, there is an observation room and from there, you can view their feeding. On the 1st floor in this building, there are restaurant and shops.
Entrance fee: Adult 210yen; Junior high school and elementary school student 100yen
Website: http://www.izumi-navi.jp/en/feature/tsuru

・Crane Park Izumi

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This is a rare and unique Crane Museum in Japan where you can learn about cranes through displays about their biology, and also enjoy simulation of flying in the dome theater.
Entrance fee: Adult 310yen; University and high school student 210yen; Junior high school and elementary student 100yen

Website: http://www.izumi-navi.jp/en/feature/tsuru

Uwaba Highlands (Cosmos Garden)

At an altitude of 500m, the Uwaba Highlands is a plateau bordering Kumamoto Prefecture with a 3 hectare flower park where 250,000 cosmos flowers bloom.

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There is an observatory and specialty retail stores that sell local vegetables from the highlands.

The market also sells ice cream made with milk from the cows of the Uwaba Highlands. Many families and tourists come to the highlands to have picnics.

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[ Viewing Period ]
October 1st to October 20th

[ Opening Hours ]
24 hours (7 days a week)

[ Parking Space ]
145 parking spaces

[ Entrance fee ]
Free

[ Address ]
2648-4 Kamiokawauchi, Izumi City, Kagoshima Prefecture


[ E-mail ]
kanko_c@city.izumi.kagoshima.jp

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Area guide : Hokusatsu area >>

Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

Facebook page : Kagoshima Travel Guide >>



YORIMICHI CRUISE

There is a cruise called "YORIMICHI CRUISE", which will keep you fully entertained for 50 minutes with the attractive and changing views of Mt.Sakurajima and Kinko Bay.

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The cruise runs once a day, departing from Kagoshima Port at 11:05AM and arriving at Sakurajima Port.

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The cruising course differs from the ordinary one as it goes down Kinko Bay in a circuit. You may even get to see dolphins. 

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Discover a lesser-seen side of Kagoshima on the "YORIMICHI CRUISE"!

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[ Fare ]
500 yen (adult) 250 yen (child)
** You will need to pay the fee in advance at Kagoshima Port.
** Passengers with one day passes "Welcome Cute" should drop by the ticket office to exchange for a boarding ticket on the day of boarding.


[ Departure time ]
11:05 AM from Kagoshima Port (one service a day)
** There is a useful circuit bus for Sakurajima sightseeing called "Sakurajima Island View" which starts at Sakurajima Port at 12:15 PM
** If you wish to return to Kagoshima Port, you will need to pay 160 yen for the regular ferry service back. 


[ Ticket Offices ]
>> Kagoshima Port
>> Sakurajima Port
>> Kagoshima Chuo Station Tourist Information Center

* July, 2016
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Area guide : Sakurajima >>

Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide >>

Shiroyama Observatory - Shiroyama Promenade

"Shiroyama" is the name of the hill located in the center of Kagoshima City with an altitude of 107 meters. The name comes from the fact that a castle had once been built on the hill.

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The 2 km promenade to the observatory is filled with more than 600 species of plants. 

While located in the city area, it is a treasure trove of nature.

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The observatory is very popular with travelers as a photo spot that overlooks Mt. Sakurajima and Kinko Bay.

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Why don't you take a walk there in the morning to see the sun rising up from behind Mt. Sakurajima?

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◆ Shiroyama Observatory
【 Access 】
Disembark at the Shiroyama bus stop from the Kagoshima City View bus "Shiroyama and Iso Course".

◆ Shiroyama Promenade
【 Access 】 *See the lines on the map showing 2 routes
1 Route from "Tanshoen" next to Terukuni Shrine
2 Route from "Iwasaki Tani" next to the Satsuma Retainers Monument

* May, 2016
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Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide >>

Ogawa-no-taki Waterfall

The Ogawa-no-taki Waterfall in Minamiosumi Town is a soothing place with the sounds of water cascading down in the midst of beautiful nature.

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You will see a parking lot after walking through a narrow path. Continue another 1200 meters and the mystical scene will reveal itself.

The 60 meters wide waterfall pours down into the plunge pool, which glimmers a beautiful emerald green and contrasts with the surrounding rough rocks.

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Although swimming in the pool is prohibited, it is worth a visit to experience the natural, cool atmosphere.

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【 Video 】
KAGOSHIMA Energetic Japan (Ogawa-no-taki Waterfall)

【 Business hours 】
Please refrain from entering at night ** Entry may be restricted in bad weather

【 Access 】
** No public transport
Drive 1 km from Minamiosumi Town Hall to Sata area, and turn left at the Ogawa junction.
Follow the signs to Ogawa-no-taki Waterfall along the way.

The way from the parking lot to the waterfall basin is by an uneven road. Comfortable clothes and footwear are advised.

* May, 2016
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Area guide : Osumi >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide" >> 

Ebino Eco Museum Center

The Ebino Eco Museum Center is an environmental learning facility located in the Kirishima-Kinkowan National Park.

There are videos and static displays on the nature of Kirishima, and the center is staffed all year round.


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It is also the starting/entry point to hiking trails around the Kirishima mountain range, with trails leading to Ebino Kogen Highland (at an altitude of 1,200m), Mount Karakuni, and various crater lakes.

[ Opening Hours ] 09:00 - 17:00 HRS

[ Closed ] Opens all year round

[ Getting There ] Nearby "Ebino-kogen" bus stop (Bus terminates at Maruo Onsen)

[ Parking Space ] 200 lots available (** subject to fee)

[ Website ] Ebino Eco Museum Center >>

* July 13, 2015
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Area Guide : Kirishima  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide  >>

Yakusugi Land

Yakusugi Land is a cedar tree paradise where visitors may observe the ecology of the trees including the fallen trees, the newly reborn trees, the epiphytes which grow on these trees, etc.

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The mountain-walking course is a relatively flat trail reaching an elevation of 1,000m and is recommended to beginner hikers. 

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There is a wide range of trails visitors may access ranging from 30 - 150 minutes long, depending on interest and stamina. 

① 30 - 50 min. Trail: Easy - Wooden path

② 80 - 150 min. Trail: Difficult - Steep mountain path

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[ Getting There ]
Local scheduled bus runs twice a day *Not in operation between December - February

[ Parking ]
40 Parking spots

* July 24, 2015
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Area Guide : Yakushima  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide  >>

Canyoning at Sarugajo Gorge

Canyoning is travelling in canyons using a variety of techniques that includes ropework, plunging/diving, swimming, etc.

Canyoning is available at the Sarugajo Gorge at Tarumizu!

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The greatest characteristic of canyoning at Sarugajo Gorge is none other than the crystal clear waters flowing through a valley of granite amid the green forests.

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[ Availability Period ] 
July - September (** Kindly make a reservation at least 3 days in advance)

[ Course Time ] 
About 2 hours

[ Price ] 
One person: 7,000 yen 
(Group discount for four people and above - 5,000 yen per person)

[ Inquiries ]
Mori-no-Eki Tarumizu >>

* June 12, 2015
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Area guide : Osumi >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide" >> 

Bandokorobana Nature Park

Bandokorobana Nature Park is a great scenic site where visitors may see Mt. Kaimon floating atop the East China Sea.

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In the 19th C.E, Mr. Tadataka Ino visited this site to create a map of Japan and later referred to it as "a superb view of the world." 

On clear days, visitors will be able to see both Yakushima Island and Mishima Islands.

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Enjoy the charming coastlines and take a leisurely stroll through the rich nature. 

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Will this bring luck? "Ringing the Bandokoro Bell"

It is said your wishes will come true based on the number of times the bell is rung. 

1 Time---For Happiness,  
2 Times--- For Health,  
3 Times---For Love, 
4 Times---For Safe Childbirth, 
5 Times---For A Child/Children

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[ Getting There ]
10 min. walk from Mizunarikawa Station on the JR Ibusuki-Makurazaki line. 

[ Website ] 
Bandokorobana Nature Park >> 
*Japanese Only

* June 8, 2015
-----------------
Area guide : Nansatsu area >>

Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

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Yakushima Environmental Culture Center

The Yakushima Environmental Culture Center is a cultural facility where visitors may learn about information related to Yakushima's nature, culture, etc.
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Inside, videos and displays introduce and explain the nature of Yakushima's mountains, forests, rivers, and oceans.

The facility at the entrance to Miyanoura Beach is an ideal way to get an overview of Yakushima.

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[ Opening Hours ] 
9:00 - 17:00 (Admission until 16:30)

[ Closed ]
3rd Tuesday of every month, the day after National Holidays, New Years holidays (December 28 - January 1), February 15 - last day of the month. 

[ Admission Fee ]
General Admission: 520 yen, High School/University Students: 360 yen, Middle/Elementary Students: 260yen, Infants: Free

[ Getting There ]
5 min. walk from Miyanoura Beach

[ Website ]
Yakushima Environmental Culture Center >>

* May 15, 2015
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Area Guide : Yakushima  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

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Sakurajima Island View Bus

The Sakurajima Island View bus, which covers the west area of Sakurajima, can be boarded at the Sakurajima port.

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The one hour course has stop-overs at the Sakurajima Visitor Center (a volcano museum), the Yunohira Observatory (closest spot to the crater, which is at an elevation of 373m), and so on.
Recommended for visitors with limited time but would like to visit all the must-see locations on Sakurajima.

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[ Bus Stops ]
 (1) Sakurajima Port → (2) Hi-no-Shima Megumi-kan / Sakurajima "Michi-no-Eki" (Local Products Market) → (3) Rainbow Sakurajima Guest House → (4) Sakurajima Visitor's Center → (5) Karasujima Observatory → (6) Akamizu Observatory Square → (7) Akamizu Yunohira-guchi → (8) Yunohira Observatory → (9) Oushu Elementary School → (1) Sakurajima Port
[ Bus Fare ] depends on distance traveled
Adult: 120 yen - 440 yen / Child (primary school and below): 60 yen - 220 yen
One Day Pass (500 Yen) Available for sales on the Sakurajima Island View Bus

[ Getting There ] Terminal station: Sakurajima Port
Sakurajima Ferry Terminal (1F)

[ Website ] 
Sakurajima Island View >>

* May 7, 2015
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Area guide : Sakurajima >>

Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

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Senpiro-no-taki Waterfall

Senpiro-no-taki Waterfall has a 60m drop and is one of the most recognizable of the many waterfalls on Yakushima Island.

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The waterfall is named after its massive size and its resemblance to 1,000 people holding hands together.

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Visitors can enjoy a magnificent view of the waterfall from the observatory in the south.

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[ Getting There ]
40 min. walk from "Tainokou" bus stop

[ Parking ]
10 parking spots

* December 9, 2014
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Area Guide : Yakushima  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide  >>

Hirauchi Kaichu Onsen (Hirauchi Seaside Hot Spring)

Hirauchi Kaichu Onsen is mysterious in that the natural bathtub appears only at low tide (twice a day, 2 hours each time).

You can see the waves crashing upon the rocks while bathing in the hot spring and feel like you are at one with nature.

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* Mixed bathing
* Swimsuits are not allowed

** Video of Hirauchi Kaichu Onsen from Kagoshima Energetic Japan website >>

[ Times of Low Tide ]
Japan Meteorological Agency >>


[ Access ]
5 min. walk from "Hirouchi-kaichu-onsen" bus stop. *Please keep in mind there are only a few buses running per day.

 
[ Parking ]
4 cars

* October 20, 2014
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Area Guide : Yakushima  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide  >>

Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine

The Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine spans 424 hectares across the forest and is around 600 - 1,300m above sea level. 

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The forest is covered in green, unique ground plants like ferns and mosses, and travelers can experience the superb world where Yakusugi cedar trees and laurel trees grow together.  

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Within the Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine are three maintained courses with differing required course times, and the most popular of the courses is the "Taiko-iwa Rock Course" which requires approximately four hours of hiking time.

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Weather permitting, the Taiko-iwa Rock is a great place for visitors to enjoy a breathtaking view of the surrounding massive granite rocks and Yakushima Island's forests.

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Also, near the Taiko-iwa Rock is the "moss-covered forest" (kokemusu-mori) where director Hayao Miyazaki visited several times for inspiration for the Studio Ghibli film "Princess Mononoke" (Mononoke Hime). 

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Furthermore, it is said that in order to accurately portray the forest's natural deep green shade in the film, staff had to incorporate at least 200 different shades of green.

Come visit and experience firsthand how "green" Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine truly is! 

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[ Open Season ]
Open all year *Closed during the winter season due to snow


[ Fee (By donation) ]
300 yen - High school student or older


[ Access ]
Shiratani Unsuikyo bus stop


[ Parking ]
40 parking spots


[ Website ]
Shiratani Unsuikyo Ravine >>
*Japanese only

* September 24, 2014
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Area Guide : Yakushima  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide  >>

Sato Port Area, Koshikishima Island

One might wish to walk around this sparsely populated island of 6,000 people to explore the rustic island life.

There are several interesting spots in the vicinity of Sato Port, which is served by high speed boats and ferries.

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The Tombolo View Spot
A good location that overlooks the 1km-wide great tombolo (sand bar).

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Sato Samurai Residence Complex
Remains of samurai residence buildings which are surrounded by stone walls

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Yamashita Shoten >> 
Offering freshly made tofu (beancurd) *Closed on Thursday

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Gallery Hiramine >>  *Closed on Wednesdays and Thursdays
Modern Art Gallery & Café
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** Walking Map of Sato Port area

* September 10, 2014
---------------------
Area guide : Hokusatsu area >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide>> 

"Tamatebako" Open-Air Onsen

Tamatebako Onsen is an open-air hot spring with a panoramic view of Mt. Kaimon and the East China Sea. 

The two gender-segregated hot spring baths have different interior designs and different views of the surrounding landscape as well, and the baths used by men and women switch on alternate days. 

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Enjoy the panoramic view of the surrounding area while soaking in this hot spring! 

Visitors will experience a unique and wonderful feeling of enjoying the hot spring, ocean and sky integrated all together.

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[ Hours ] 
9:30 - 19:30
* View of Mt. Kaimon Open-air Onsen Schedule: Men --- Odd-numbered days (ex. 1st, 3rd, 5th, etc.) | Women --- Even-numbered days (ex. 2nd, 4th, 6th, etc.)

[ Holidays ]
Every Thursday, and the day after National Holidays

[ Admission Fee ]
500 yen

[ Access ]
JR Ibusuki-Makurazaki Line + 25 "Nottari Oritari" bus ride from Ibusuki Station


[ Official Website ]
Healthy Land Open-air Onsen Tamatebako Onsen >>


[ Address ]
Fukumoto 3340, Yamagawa, Ibusuki City, Kagoshima Prefecture

* August 18, 2014
-----------------
Area Guide : Ibusuki >>

Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

Facebook page : Kagoshima Travel Guide >>


Yakushima Sea Turtle Museum

Nagata Inakahama Beach is the no.1 sea turtle nesting site in Japan, and between May and July during the nesting period, there may be more than 20 turtles nesting in one single night.

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The Yakushima Sea Turtle Museum at Nagata Inakahama Beach introduces and explains the ecology of the sea turtles. 

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Yakushima Sea Turtle Museum

[ Hours ]
9:00 - 17:00 (admission until 16:30)

[ Holidays ]
Tuesdays, the day after National Holidays, New Years holidays (December 25 - January 1)

[ Admission Fee ]
General Admission: 300 yen; Elementary Students: 100 yen; Infants: Free

[ Access ]
Local bus - Chunobashi bus stop + 3 min. walk

[ Official Website ] 
Sea Turtle Museum >> 

[ Address ] 
Nagata Area, Yakushima Town, Kumage District, Kagoshima Prefecture

* July 24, 2014
---------------------
Area Guide : Yakushima  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide  >>


Chirin Island (Chiringashima)

Chirin Island (Chiringashima) is an uninhabited island in Kinko Bay roughly 3km around and 90m high.

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Known as "the island of mystery" since ancient times, it is connected to the mainland by sand bar when the spring tide is at low tide. 

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The sandbar appears for one to four hours a day(depends on the weather) only during October from March.

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It takes about 800m at low tide enabling you to walk across to the island in about 20 minutes. 

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This island is also known as a matchmaking spot for couples because the sandbar is reminiscent of a bridge or bond.

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Be sure to visit to Chirin Island and be a happier couple!

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* April 17, 2014

Sandbar calendar >> 
*Japanese only
---------------------
Area Guide : Ibusuki  >>

Archives : Talk of the Town  >> 

Facebook : Kagoshima Travel Guide  >>


Farm Stay Experience in Isa City

Located in the north of Kagoshima Prefecture, the Isa basin experiences a large annual temperature gap and is thus famous for its delicious rice.

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Mr. Yamanokuchi, a local farm owner and representative of the "Inaka-no-Ohyakusho-san", grows rice and many types of vegetables. His farm also offers a farm stay experience.

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Once we got to the field, we had a quick lesson on harvesting techniques and recognising the correct sized vegetables (ready for harvesting) before getting started.

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The contents of the farm experience varies according to season. When we visited the farm in late October we harvested Jumbo Ingen (beans) and Kinzan Negi (leek).

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Harvesting the crops which were painstakingly cultivated by the farmer was definitely a great experience!

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Lunch prepared using the freshly harvested vegetables is also available for ¥1,000, and requires an advanced reservation.

The sumptuous lunch we had consisted of onigiri rice balls made using the famous Isa rice, Satsumajiru vegetable and chicken stew, Jumbo Ingen tempura (battered and deep fried), and pumpkin dessert.

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This house where we had lunch also offers a farm stay for visitors.

The room layout and the tatami (straw) mat flooring is that of typical old Japanese houses. Children who visit this place on school excursions exclaim happily "its just like my grandpa's house!"

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"Inaka-no-Ohyakusho-san" welcomes foreigners and Japanese alike to experience farm life and farm stay. (*enquiries in Japanese only)

The owner is proud of his farm produce and assures visitors that they will be able to experience fun harvesting at any time of the year.

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Wouldn't you like to enjoy a relaxing farm stay in Isa city?

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■ Enquiries  *Japanese only
Inakano-ohyakusho-san (Mr. Yamanokuchi)
TEL : 0995-26-0490 


■ Web site : *Japanese only


■ Farm Experience
Duration : Approx. 2hour
Capacity : 20(maximum)
Fee : 1,500 yen per person


■ Farm Stay and Farm Experience
Capacity : 5(maximum)
Fee : 5,000 yen per person
Address : 2648-2, Hishikari Arata, Isa-shi, Kagoshima

* February 25, 2014

-----------------
Area guide : Hokusatsu area >>

Archives : Talk of the Town >> 

Facebook page : Kagoshima Travel Guide >>


Kirishima Trekking route : Mt. Karakunidake - Onami Pond

There are several trails for Mt. Karakunidake, the highest peak in the Kirishima Range.

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One of these trails is an interesting route that goes near the crater lake Onami Pond, which is the highest elevation of its type in Japan.

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From Mt. Karakunidake, one can see the Mt. Nakadake and Mt. Shinmoedake, weather permitting.

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Mt. Shinmoedake had been dormant for roughly 300 years, until it erupted violently on the 26th of January, 2011.

Due to volcanic activity, it is currently off limits. 

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Patches of Kyushu Azalea and Mitsuba-tsutsuji bushes are now in danger because of the eruption.

Hopefully someday when the situation settles down, the route to Mt. Shinmoedake and Mt. Nakadake will be open to the public again.


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【Access】
■ From Kagoshima City
 [JR]    Kagoshima Chuo Station
                    ⇓ JR express train
 [JR]    Kirishima Jingu Station
 [BUS] Kirishima Jingu bus stop
                    ⇓ Iwasaki Bus (to Kirishima Iwasaki Hotel)
 [BUS] Maruo Bus stop (change buses)
                    ⇓ Maruo Bus
 [BUS] Ebino Kogen
            [ Trekking ]
 [BUS] Ebino Kogen
                    ⇓ Maruo Bus
 [BUS] Maruo Bus stop (change buses)
                    ⇓ Iwasaki Bus (to Kokubu sta.)
 [BUS] Kirishima Jingu bus stop
 [JR]    Kirishima Jingu Station
                    ⇓ by JR express train
 [JR]    Kagoshima Chuo Station

* January 16, 2014
-----------------
PDF KirishimaTrekkingMAP.pdf (English) 

Area guide : Kirishima >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide" >> 

Mt. Kaimon - Satsuma Fuji -

Mt. Kaimon alt. 924m (3,031 ft), is a volcanic mountain currently dormant with an impressively beautiful shape.

It is one of the hundred most celebrated mountains in Japan, and is sometimes called "Satsuma Fuji" due to its resemblance to Mt. Fuji.

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Mt. Kaimon is a popular site for trekking and hiking.

To climb to the summit and back down takes 5 to 6 hours.

From the summit, you can enjoy a 360-degree panorama of the open sea and belts of crop fields!

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■ Access: 1 from Kagoshima City
JR: Kagoshima Chuo Station⇔1hr 20min⇔JR Yamagawa sta.
(change)
BUS: Yamagawa Station⇔35min⇔Kaimon Tozanguchi bus stop.


■ Access: 2 from Kagoshima City  ** The number trians operating this route are limited.
JR: Kagoshima Chuo Station⇔2hr⇔JR: Kaimon Station⇔20min⇔Mt. Kaimon


* December 20, 2013
-----------------
Area guide : Ibusuki >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide>> 

Koshikishima Island

The Koshikishima Islands are located in the East China Sea to the northwest of Kagoshima, with a population of about 6,000 people.

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They are made up of three main islands: Kamikoshiki, Nakakoshiki and Shimokoshiki, and several smaller islands in the surrounding area.

Each island has its unique landforms, and their great scenery has attracted many visitors.

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These islands' unique landforms, which are interesting when viewed up close, are the envy of many geologists because the changing environment here allows one to feel the evolution of Earth.

There are many locations on the islands where one can witness the unique landforms of Koshikishima Island.

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The Tombolo View Spot at Satocho on Kamikoshiki Island overlooks a great tombolo (sand bar) almost 1km in length.

A tombolo is a deposition landform in which an island is attached to the mainland by a narrow piece of land such as a spit or sand bar. Approximately 1,300 people live on this tombolo.

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From "Nagame-no-Hama", one can enjoy a breathtaking overview of Lake Namako.

A sandbar of about 2km formed by the deposit of small pebbles has cut off a segment of the sea into a beautiful lagoon, and reminds people of the slow passing time on the island.

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Be sure not to miss "Napoleon rock", a famous tourist spot in the Shimokoshiki area.

Standing 127m above the sea surface, the side profile of this strangely shaped rock resembles the great Frenchman Napoleon, hence the name "Napoleon Rock".

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One can also grasp the extent of  these special landforms by observing rivers flowing from the mountains.

The "Senoo-no-Kannon Santaki" waterfall falls from a height of 55m down a triple step cliff. The surroundings are filled with cool and refreshing air.

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At the Yohagi Maruyama Park, one can clearly see the earth's stratified layers in the Page Iwa cliff.

Ancient fossils are often discovered here. Last year, the fossil of a tooth of the herbivorous dinosaur Ceratopsidoe was found in an 80 million year old earth stratum in the Kashima area.

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Not limited to viewing from afar, one can actually access some of the rocky escarpments, which are a few minutes walk from the Sesenoura village.

Napoleon Rock blends in with the Sesenoura village surroundings, and the villagers have long referred to the rock fondly as "Chuuse".

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Hachijiri Observatory overlooks the Kashima area of Shimokoshiki, Nakakoshiki and Kamikoshiki islands. It is interesting to compare the view with a map.

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We recommend the Dangai Tour, which brings visitors around the island on a boat.

Looking at the islands from the sea brings a refreshing perspective.

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Be sure to visit Koshikishima Island - natural beauty formed from the waves, breeze, and Earth's evolution.


【Getting There】
About 1 - 2 hours ferry ride from Kushikino port on Kagoshima mainland.

【Further Enquiries】 * English language support available

■ Kamikoshiki Tourist information Center 
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■ Shimokoshiki Tourist information Center
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■ Shimokoshiki Hotel
Koshikishima Sinwakan (*Accommodation, car rental, transfer from port)
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* December 4, 2013
---------------------
Area guide : Hokusatsu area >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide>> 

100% Natural Footbath at Sakurajima!

Dig your own hotspring by yourself, then enjoy taking a footbath with a great view of the sea!

You will see and feel the energy of Earth!! 


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You can take a private tour organized by the Sakurajima Visitor Center.

Or you can purchase a digging set (a shovel, towel, and guidebook), also available at the Sakurajima Visitor Center.

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【Sakurajima Hot Spring digging tour】
  ** Kindly make an advance reservation for the tour.

■ Tour Season:  all year

■ Time required: 2 - 3 hours

■ Fee3500 per person 

■ Capacity: 7  (Please contact us for 8 or more participants) 

■ What you need: Dress easy to move, hat, towel, drink  

■ Contact: +81 99-245-0100

■ Official WebsiteSakurajima Museum

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* November 15, 2013
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Area guide : Sakurajima >>

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Green Farm Agriculture Park

The Green Farm Agriculture Park in Kagoshima city is now open! 

Visitors can find out more about food and farming through the many hands-on experiences here. 

A wide array of facilities such as professionally equipped cooking rooms and handicraft rooms, a marketplace selling local produce, restaurants, etc. can be found in this 40 hectare establishment. 

It would be great to spend the whole day here!

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The various hands-on experience classes offered here are highly popular among visitors. Class schedule subject to changes every month


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■ Farm Tractor Riding

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■ Crop Harvesting

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■ Soba Making (buckwheat noodles)

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---
■ Relaxing Yoga Class

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From the farm restaurant "Dai Dai", visitors can enjoy the great view of Kinko Bay and Osumi Peninsula while tucking in to a sumptuous meal.

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The set menu offered here uses fresh vegetables, and the Hoze Soba (a type of buckwheat noodle) is the most popular.

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*  Kindly make an advance reservation for the hands-on classes.
TEL: +81 993453337


How to get there: About 10 minutes by taxi from JR Kiire Station.

Southernmost point in mainland Japan "Sata-misaki (Cape Sata)"

Kagoshima is located in the southernmost in Japan, except Okinawa.


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The southernmost point Sata-misaki is place necessary for those travelers who does journeys across Japan.

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The lighthouse in Sata-misaki is a historic one which has lighted the south part of Kagoshima for almost 150 years.

The chalk wall which rebuilt-in 1950 stands out in the blue ocean.

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In sunny day, you will be able to see both Tanegashima and Yakushima, you feel like you are in the southernmost point.


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* September 1, 2013
---------------------
Area guide : Osumi >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide" >> 

"Amami Oshima"which has rare nature and its own culture

Japan is an island country, and it consists of four main islands and the other countless islands.

There are 28 manned isolated islands in Kagoshima, the biggest one is Amami Oshima island.

Amami-Oshima is located 380km from mainland of Kagoshima, it takes 1 hour by plane and 11 hours by ferry.

There are some direct flights from Tokyo or Osaka, you can enjoy the different sence of Japan in only few hours!

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The feauture of Amami is of course the nature with endemic species and its own culture.

"Amami and Ryukyu" is known as tantative list of World natural heritage site, there you can see  endangered animals and plants.
The first one will be Pentalagus furnessi.

Pentalagus furnessi is a black rare which is considered as endeimic speices known as natural monument from Amami-Oshima island.

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The size is about 40~50 cm, it is bigger than general rabits.
The most distinctive feature is thick body hair. The back is dark brown, and the belly is brilliant color.
In only 3 hours I happened to see about 10 rabbits during "Amami night tours" held on July .
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Kinsakubaru wildwood" is also one of the most famous place in Amami-Oshima.

The forest resorbs a lot of water, trees pursue thelimer.ghts. 

Inside the forest you feel cool even in hot summer.

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Those grown trees  are cleared by Typhoon, that is why they are same in tall.
The surface of mountain look alike broccoli! 

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Some interesting things can be found that you can feel the climate and the nature features.

The houses protect the food from hub ( Which is one of the snakes)

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"Oshima Tsumugi" is known as casual wear you feel comfortable even in hot summer.

Different from regular Kimono, it is light and it has become one of the most luxury Kimono.

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The food in Amami is also enjoynable.

Brown suger Shochu made by sugercane is smooth to drink, tastewill vary the procedure of making.

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For lunch, you are recommended to have "Keihan".

Keihan is a soul food of Amami Oshima, you pour very tasty chicken soup over rice.

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Forest of  mangrove traveled by canoue,

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Beautiful ocean where you can enjoy variouswater sports, Amami Oshima is very attractive.

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They have grown own nature cycle to protect their eco system, that is how they save abundant nature and eco system.

Please visit Amami Oshima island where you can find the nature!

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* August 20, 2013
---------------------
Area guide : Amami island >>

Other topics of "Talk of the Town" >> 

The official Facebook page "Kagoshima Travel Guide" >> 

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