Around The Alps 1995 Japan 1996 Around Poland 1997 Madagascar 1998 Grand Canion 1999 Cuba 2001 Mexico, Belize, Guatemala 2005 Sri Lanka 2006 Crimea, Moldova, Romania 2008 Corsica and Sardinia 2009 2021 2022 2023 Sorry, your browser does not support inline SVG.
Few words about the nature
Below you will find a few remarks on Japanese nature.
Let us begin with forests. They are ubiquitous, which is related to the abundance of mountainous terrains. Mountains and hills occupy around 80% of the country's territory. Besides, Japanese mountains are very steep and densely forested, except for the highest ranges of the Japanese Alps. The slopes can be so steep that local trees literally lie on the hillside. The farther northwards, the more autumn colours we saw. Some views were breathtaking. I had an impression that each tree changed its foliage colours in a different manner. The most beautiful hues awaited us in Hokkaido, where autumn was in full swing already, painting trees with dozens of shades of yellows, browns and reds. Blood-red leaves of some maples were especially eye-catching. We came across many interesting species of fauna and flora. To name a few: cedar and ginko biloba, bamboo and the snow monkey (or Japanese macaque – we saw them near Nikko). Indigenous dragonflies are also noteworthy. At the beginning of our expedition we saw clouds of those insects. It was their mating season. I don't know if it was because of hormones rushing through their heads, but their behaviour was rather unusual. They would hit our faces and helmets; one landed on my hand and did not feel like flying away for a few minutes. I wriggled my hand, trying to shake it off, but there was no response. Apparently, it tried to make friends with me. Speaking of insects, Japanese mosquitoes were not as blood-thirsty as ours. Some other large creatures that caught our eye were predatory birds often hovering above our heads (unfortunately I do not know the proper name of that species). One more thing was especially striking: cleanliness. Parks were well maintained, and lake water was crystal clear everywhere. Hopefully we will near this state of affairs one day…