Category: Japan prep trip 2018


Meeting my mentor – Dr. Miyazaki

After my last Shinrin-yoku private session which took place at Okutama Town near Tokyo, I traveled to a hotel near my next destination, which in fact turned out to be the highlight of my entire trip. I stayed overnight very near the Chiba University campus where Dr. Yoshifumi Miyazaki works has a professor and leads the Nature Therapy Laboratory at the Center for Environment, … Read More Meeting my mentor – Dr. Miyazaki


Okutama Town

My next stop was the Okutama Forest Therapy base near Tokyo. At about one and a half hours by car from downtown Tokyo, we find this picturesque town by the Tama river. Thick forests on both sides of this river valley as far as the eye can see. I later learned that this area has 97% of its area covered by forests. Being closer … Read More Okutama Town


Nagano – Temple, Shrines and giant trees – Part 2

The pilgrimage route through the Togakushi shrines is located in the forested mountains northwest of Nagano. Togakushi is considered to be a spiritual mountain with five shrines along the trail, each representing a different God character from the mythological story of Japan’s creation. The 3 main shrines in Togakushi, a lower, a middle and upper one, are connected by a few kilometers of forested … Read More Nagano – Temple, Shrines and giant trees – Part 2

+ Zenkoji Buddhist temple - Nagano

Nagano – Temple, Shrines and giant trees – Part 1

For the day after the Otari Shinrin Yoku session, I arranged a tour in Nagano Town of a famous Buddhist temple, the Zenkoji temple and a Shinto pilgrimage route with several shrines along the way, the Togakushi shrines.  Fortunately I had the same guide as the day before, Naoko, she was amazing. I learned a lot from her about the two main religions in … Read More Nagano – Temple, Shrines and giant trees – Part 1


Otari Forest Therapy

Continuing with our adventure in Japan, my next destination was Minami-Otari, where I had booked a full day Shinrin Yoku, private tour with a guide from the Otari Forest Therapy base. I left the Akasawa forest area, the very historical Kiso area, heading north, up a beautiful valley with forested mountains on either side. I had the whole day before I had to check … Read More Otari Forest Therapy


Akasawa Forest

The birth place of Shinrin-Yoku


Glimpse of Tokyo

When I got to the hotel, near the Hamamatsuchō Monorail Terminal, I got my first big surprise, the Reception desk staff were fully functional, life-size ROBOTS!! In any rate, once I scanned my Passport, this machine, next to the robot, delivered the card that was my room key, got a couple of instructions from the “guy” on the left and away I went to … Read More Glimpse of Tokyo


Day 1 – from Haneda to downtown Tokyo

The monorail service from Haneda Airport to central Tokyo is as efficient as the JR Rail system and all other forms of public transportation in Japan. Very inexpensive too, about US $ 2.50 from Haneda to downtown Tokyo. Not even an hour since I arrived, and something marvelous happened, which showed me again how considerate and aware of their surroundings people in Japan are, … Read More Day 1 – from Haneda to downtown Tokyo


Tokyo Arrival

When we arrived to Haneda airport, all went very smoothly. I was scanning for anything new as I was entering a new world to me. Getting off the plane happened as it always does, going through the Passport control area, was the same as other countries. The advantage here was that the line for foreign nationals was very short compared to the Japanese nationals. After … Read More Tokyo Arrival


Japan, here we come!

On October 17, 2018 I am embarking on a trip to Japan to explore and experience the places where Shinrin Yoku was born. The Forest Therapy Bases where two decades of research have taken place, providing such wealth of information on the many physiological benefits provided by this practice. The excitement is unmeasurable! And the huge bonus is that I will have the amazing … Read More Japan, here we come!