Amami Oshima and Tokunoshima Named UNESCO Sites of World Natural Heritage
Several islands in Kagoshima and Okinawa prefectures were certified as World Natural Heritage Sites by UNESCO on 26th July, 2021. The area includes Amami Oshima and Tokunoshima in Kagoshima Prefecture as well as the northern part of Okinawa Island and Iriomote in Okinawa Prefecture. The announcement makes Kagoshima the only prefecture in Japan to have two World Natural Heritage Sites, with Yakushima certified in 1993.
The islands newly recognized by UNESCO have subtropical laurel forests and primitive vegetation, as well as many endemic species such as the Amami rabbit (kuro usagi), Iriomote cat and Okinawa rail. The International Union for Conservation of Nature (IUCN) highly evaluated the area, noting its “great importance for biodiversity conservation as shown by the number of rare endemic species.” In addition, the people of the islands, with their warm personalities and close relationship with nature, have developed a unique culture in the four areas, making the Amami and Okninawa islands even more attractive.
|Name||Amami Oshima Promotion Videos
|Area||Amami-oshima island, Tokunoshima island|
|Area Guide||■Amami Oshima Island Page
■Tokunoshima Island Page