Showing posts with label islands. Show all posts
Showing posts with label islands. Show all posts

Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Urauchi River & Mariudo Falls


The Urauchi River is the longest river in Okinawa Prefecture, and it is found on Iriomote Island, the largest of the Yaeyama Islands.

As Okinawa consists of many small islands, its perhaps not surprising that the longest river is only just over 18km in length.

the river source is in the middle of the mostly uninhabited island at 311 meters elevation and reaches the sea at the NW of the island.

Boat trips go upriver about 10 kilometers and from where they stop a trail runs another kilometer or so to Mariudo Falls.

A three stage falls of just 16 meters, Mariudo Falls is not the tallest on Iriomote, but possibly the most visited. It is possible to hike further upstream to another waterfall, and several smaller falls are passed on the way to Mariudo.

Many sources use the word "jungle" to describe Iriomote, but while it is certainly different from mainland Japan, I would use "sub-tropical" forest.

What Iriomote does have is plenty of mangroves, trees that grow in the salty water of intertidal zones in tropical and sub-tropical environments.

The guide on the boat was very excited to point out this bird which, I believe, was a Crested Sea Eagle.

Its also possible to cruise the river in guided kayak tours.

The previous post on Okinawa was on Mount Nosokodake on neighboring Ishigaki Island.

Tuesday, March 10, 2020

Chiringashima Island


Located in Kagoshima Bay about 800 meters offshore near Ibusuki, Chiringashima Island is the largest island in the bay. It is uninhabited, with a circumference of about 3 kilometers, and only 90 meters high.

Between march and October the island becomes connected to the mainland at low tide by a winding sandbar that enables visitors to walk out to the island. The sandbar exists for periods of time up to 4 hours at the longest. I visited in mid-October and wasn't sure if the tide was going out of coming in so didn't risk it.

Because the sandbar connects the two pieces of land and therefore creates  a bond it has become known as a power spot for love and matchmaking, one of many such spots that have sprung up around Japan in recent years.

Apparently the island is registered as one of Japan's Top 100 Aromatic Spots..... an obsession with ranking that continues to bemuse me

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Aki Nada Island Hopping


The Aki Nada Islands are a chain of islands in the Inland Sea off the coast of Hiroshima Prefecture that run approximately from near Kure to near Takehara. A series of bridges have been constructed that link the islands to each other and to the mainland so now it is possible to drive, cycle, or in my case walk from island to island. The Aki Nada Ohashi bridge connect the mainland to Shimo Kamagari Island.


This bridge connects Shimo Kamagari Island to Kami Kamagari Island. Shimo and kami mean "lower" and "Upper" and refers to which is closer to Kyoto as this was the main transportation route between Kyushu, Western Japan and the old capital.


Kamikamagari connects to Teshima. Not to be confused with another Teshima further east in the Inland Sea off Hyogo. That Teshima has become quite well known as an "Art Island" and when I booked a room at a minshuku on this Teshima they wanted to double-check that I wasnt confusing it with the other Teshima.


Teshima connects to Osaki Shimozima. There is a little bit of fishing on the islands but they are too steep to support agriculture but all the islands now grow a lot of oranges on the steep slopes.


A very short bridge connect Osakishimozima to Tairajima, a small uninhabited island.


Tairajima to Nakanoshima.


And finally, with an almost carbon copy of the previous bridge, Nakanoshima connects to Okamura Island which is in Ehime Prefecture.

The largest of the Aki Nada islands, Osakikamijima, lies to the north and is only accessible by ferry.

Friday, September 26, 2008

Typical Japanese Landscape 7


Japan consists of more than 6,000 islands, about half of which are inhabited, so any "typical" Japanese landscape would have to include the sea!

This view is of the Inland Sea off the coast of Yamaguchi Prefecture.