Nature

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By Claire D'hooghe | June 12, 2016

Sagano Bamboo Forest, Arashiyama You’ve seen the stock image before: a low angle shot of an overwhelming, towering, green bamboo forest and a lonely path. It invokes the sense of a quiet, intimate scene; the observer looking up at the bamboo swaying in the breeze, surrounded by an ancient, spiritual sing-a-long of the engulfing Japanese forest. This idealistic, tranquil place exists in Arashiyama, Japan, so the caption says. Tourism information will tell you…

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By Benjamin Pratt | May 20, 2016

In the valley of the Japanese mountains in Gunma prefecture lays a small, unassuming mountain town called Minakami. Just jump on a Shinkansen from Tokyo for an hour and a half and you’ll be transported from the metropolis jungles of downtown districts to a lavish land of natural splendor and vitality. Engulfed by mountainous peaks,…

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By Benjamin Pratt | April 22, 2016

Picture yourself laying back reading a book beside the gentle rumble of the slow rolling mountain stream; immersed in the flora and fauna and mild murmurings of mother nature; staring up at one of Japan’s most beautiful mountainscapes. You’re not staying far away: a twenty-metre stroll back to your secluded family-run mountain chalet on the…

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By Claire D'hooghe | April 2, 2016

Yoyogi Park is a paradise, a gem of green in the middle of a concrete jungle. If you’re in Tokyo and anywhere near the Harajuku or Ginza area you cannot miss this magical and mystical dreamlike place. It’s a vast natural estate with open space, trees, flowerbeds, dog parks and a circuit cycling track, and also…

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By Benjamin Pratt | March 30, 2016

One thing you’re going to figure out really quickly about Japanese people; they really love their gardens. Maybe it’s ‘cause they can’t have them in their shoebox apartment balconies, but gardens sprawl out all over most metropolis cities in Japan. And Tokyo has a whole bunch, including the Shinjuku Gyoen National Gardens. Like Yoyogi Park, Shinjuku…

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