The island is also unique for its diverse climate and resulting biodiversity, boasting plants from subtropical and cold temperate zones. This special environment is also the grounds for Yakushima-exclusive animals such as the Yaku monkey and Yaku deer.
Outside of the forests, the island’s undeveloped coastline offers pristine beaches, snorkeling, and rustic onsens with stone baths along the sea. In the summer, the beaches are famously home to nesting sea turtles.
The seemingly otherworldly, yet purely Earthly, environment is one that must be seen to be believed.
The fastest route to the island is by airplane from Kagoshima Airport to Yakushima Airport with a flight time of only about 40 minutes.
By sea, from Kagoshima port on Kyushu, take a jetfoil speed boat to Yakushima’s Abou Port or Miyanoura Port, which is about a two and a half hour ride. For a less expensive option, you can travel via a car ferry that departs from Kyushu once per day and takes about four hours to reach Yakushima.