A natural getaway in Yakushima
Embark on a 4-day road trip by car through the mystical island of Yakushima, located off the coast of Kagoshima, Japan.
Yakushima has a unique atmosphere for you to immerse yourself in, an island run wild with lush forests and sandy beaches unlike most places found in Japan.
From discovering the island landscapes by car, to hiking in the heart of the thousand-year-old trees, this excursion will make you discover all the mysteries the island mysteries and provide you with an unforgettable adventure in Japan!
You'll discover majestic waterfalls, suspension bridges that seamlessly blend with the island's scenery, make unexpected encounters with the island wildlife, such as deer, and relax in an open-air onsen!
Soak up the mesmerizing natural beauty of Yakushima Island, which served as the inspiration for the legendary Hayao Miyazaki's Princess Mononoke!
4 days / 3 nights itinerary:
- Departure city: Kagoshima
- Nagata (1 night)
- Anbo (2 nights)
- Return city: Kagoshima
Please find itinerary details below
Why choose this excursion to Japan?
- Discover Yakushima, a small, surprising island, almost entirely covered in forest.
- Car rental and driving license translation
- Enter the magical world of Miyazaki by following in the footsteps of Princess Mononoke
- Go hiking in the mountains with one of our guides
- Enter into total immersion with Japanese culture
- Detailed itinerary and recommendations from our experts available in your digital travel diary
Your excursion in detail
Day 1 : First steps on the island
Depart from Kagoshima in the south of Kyushu by ferry out to the port of Miyanoura.
This is your arrival destination on the island of Yakushima itself, a true green haven of peace!
You'll arrive around noon and start your journey by enjoying a quality Japanese lunch at a restaurant specializing in local cuisine.
Then, it's time to pick up your rental car to start exploring the island!
After a few minutes of driving, you can already stop to do your first short hike which takes you to visit a Shinto shrine in the heart of the dense forest.
A few steps away, you will also find a picturesque beach.
Don't hesitate to go swimming if the weather is nice!
Continue on your way and take a break at a scenic viewpoint to take photos of the natural scenery, which is especially beautiful during sunset!
You will then arrive at your hotel where you will spend the evening with dinner included!
Day 2 : Coastal Treasures & Magnificent Valley
Depart by car to explore one of the largest valleys of Yakushima: You will discover a peaceful corner of nature in the heart of a forest with dense vegetation with its crystal clear streams and picturesque waterfalls.
After this escapade, hit the road again. You will pass by many places that are worth the detour:
- With its bright white sand stretching for several kilometers along the coast, this beach offers a striking contrast to the turquoise and crystal clear waters of the Pacific Ocean!
- An incredible lighthouse which will allow you to have a beautiful view of the Pacific Ocean
- A road where you will come across wild animals
- A magnificent natural waterfall
You will have lunch in the pretty town of Kurio where you will find many local restaurants.
Then head back on your way by car where you will see some very beautiful places:
- Several Shinto shrines
- Magnificent waterfalls
- A majestic Banyan Tree, which is a dizzying variety of fig tree. It has roots that emerge from its branches and descend toward the ground, forming new trunks. This gives the impression that the tree has several trunks connected together. It’s very surprising and beautiful to see!
Then go to your accommodation: Yakushima Green Hotel or equivalent.
Dinner and overnight in your hotel.
Day 3 : A trip up the mountain of Yakushima Island
Breakfast is complimentary at your accommodation, and after, your guide will pick you up from your hotel. You will continue to discover the awe-inspiring scenery of the island of Yakushima during this day of mountain climbing (approx 8 hours) on less trails that are not as frequented by most out hiking! Your guide will be sure to accommodate with your hiking abilities, comfort levels, and the weather conditions of that time!
With its elevation of 1936 meters, Mount Miyanoura is the highest point, not just on Yakushima Island, but in all of southern Japan. This brings a variety of climates that allows the growth of alpine or subtropical plants, including many endemic species. The most recognizable are perhaps the “Yakusugi”, imposing multi-millennial cedars that can be found at altitude. To ensure the preservation of its ecosystems, the central part of the island has been classified as a UNESCO world heritage site since 1993, in addition to the national park as a whole.
For fans of Studio Ghibli, this is a place of magnificent nature that inspired Hayao Miyazaki's “Princess Mononoke”. You will have the chance to follow in San's footsteps and, if you pay enough attention, you may even meet Kodama, the little spirits of the forest!
Lunch is included for the day. Return to your accommodation after a long day of hiking for dinner, also included.
Day 4 : Coastal Walk and Return to Kagoshima
Once again enjoy breakfast at your hotel and depart by car for this last day on the island of Yakushima!
Along the way, you can admire several gems of the coastline, with panoramic views of the ocean, tall cliffs, and white sand beaches.
You will then arrive at Miyanoura, where your journey on Yakushima Island first started!
Go to the car rental agency to return your vehicle, then enjoy one last lunchtime meal on the island in a traditional restaurant!
It's time to return to Kagoshima!
The departure of the ferry from the island's port is at 1:30 p.m.
Arrival in Kagoshima on the island of Kyushu in southern Japan is at 5:40 p.m.
1 night in 3* accommodation in Nagata
2 nights in 3* accommodation in Anbo
- A round trip by Ferry: Kagoshima - Miyanoura
- Car rental for 4 days
Visits and meals
-Half board in all establishments
-Mountain ascent with a guide
Included in your self-guided excursion
- Driving license translation
- Complete digital travel diary before your departure
- 24/7 telephone support, in English
Not included in the price of your excursion
- Optional insurance
- Personal expenses (including lunches)
- Everything that is not in the “included in your tour” section
- Prices displayed on this page may vary depending on the Japanese ¥ exchange rate.
- This circuit is unfortunately not accessible to people with reduced mobility.
- Pets are not allowed.
- Children and babies accepted. From 3 to 11 years old a child rate is offered. In each accommodation, they will be offered a classic adult bed, and they will be assigned a classic seat on transport. From 0 to 2 years inclusive, a “baby” rate is offered. This price corresponds to the allocation of a baby cot in the majority of accommodations on the chosen circuit. However, we cannot guarantee a baby cot in each accommodation.
- This program may be subject to modifications due to circumstances such as weather conditions or any other force majeure. Please note that due to the current situation, any information mentioned is subject to change or adaptation. Your travel documents will be given to you as follows:
- Travel diary by email before departure
-Paper documents (airport transfer ticket, transport card, Japan Rail Pass voucher) and Pocket WiFi upon arrival at the airport by our airport assistant.
- At least one person participating in the trip must have a valid driving license in their country
- N.B: In rare cases, mainly in very high season, steps may be reversed. You will be informed of this in your mini-travel guide. Thank you for understanding.
- Some accommodations may ask you for a tourist tax upon arrival. It depends on the cities and even the accommodations, because some do not include it in the cost of the reservation. It generally amounts to ¥200/night/person (around €1.60). It must be paid in cash at reception.
- Single room: People traveling alone and/or wishing to reserve a single room must pay a supplement when booking. Please note that in the event of a single room supplement for an order of more than 2 people, it will be applied in all accommodation except in ryokans (3 and 4*). Indeed, as this is traditional accommodation, people under the same reservation are grouped together in spacious rooms that can accommodate up to 5 people.
- 3 person room: If there are 3, 5 or more of you and you do not select the individual supplement, you will be allocated a triple room.
- As part of a group order (> 5 people), it may be possible, depending on the availability of accommodation, that not all members of the group are accommodated in the same accommodation. The goal, however, is to be close.
- Names of accommodation: The names indicated on the site are given for information only. In the event of unavailability, an establishment of equivalent standard will be scheduled.
- Not all accommodations have rooms with beds, you may sleep on comfortable futons.
- Included in your tour are ferry trips there and back as well as car rental
- Japanese driving license translation is included in your tour and mandatory. We take care of all the necessary steps once you have given us a valid driving license. Once in Japan, the translation of the driving license accompanied by the original license allows you to drive legally and easily. This translation is only necessary for driving licenses from the following countries: France, Germany, Belgium, Switzerland, Monaco and Taiwan. For licenses issued in other countries, you must have an international license. We count one car for 1 to 5 participants. If you would like an additional car, do not hesitate to contact us.
- Gasoline will be at your expense
Mountain ascent with a guide: your guide will pick you up from your hotel at 9 a.m., and the day will last until 5 p.m. Your meals, transportation and visits are included. Your guide will be French or English speaking depending on their availability. More details in your travel diary.
- Breakfasts and dinners are fully included in the price of your excursion.
- For lunch, you will find addresses selected by us in your travel diary.