There are reasons you have never heard of the Japanese island jewel, Yakushima. It is very unlike the stereotyped image of Japan, and it requires patience to get there. Yakushima is a steep granite monolith jutting out of the Pacific, covered with rain forest, not a volcano in sight, more like a small piece of Brazil. Its humble villages are a universe away from the Japanese metropolis.
Yakushima is directly in the path of several typhoons every year, and gets scoured again and again by wild winds and a turbulent ocean. Between these episodes of natural chaos, however, the water and the air is clear and inviting. On the west side of the island, sunsets are tinged red and gold with pollution from mainland China, 1000 km away. (Pricing Schedule F)