STORY

MICE at Natural World Heritage Sites

JPEN
屋久島一周ウルトラエコマラニックの様子。
Runners participating in the Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic

The island of Yakushima is a natural World Heritage site with MICE-hosting capabilities. The annual Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic is a shining example of what MICE on Yakushima or other World Heritage sites in Japan can be.
The Olympics, the World Masters Games, and professional baseball training camps are examples of sports conventions or “sports MICE.” They come under the exhibitions classification—the E in MICE.

屋久島一周ウルトラエコマラニック スタート。
Runners at the starting line of the Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic.

Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic

The Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic is a sporting event in which runners circumnavigate the island while enjoying its magnificent natural scenery. “Maranic” is a portmanteau of marathon and picnic; it is a fitting term for the relaxed atmosphere in which runners complete the course at their own pace.
An ultramarathon is any marathon longer than 42.195 km. The Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic is held with the general aims of promoting good sportsmanship and protecting the natural environment. The hilly course is characterized by a daunting 1,473-meter cumulative elevation gain.
The course loops around the entire island, starting at the Seaside Hotel and passing through Inakahama Beach and the Seibu Rindo Forest Path (the natural World Heritage portion of the island) before ending back at the hotel. The inclusion of the natural World Heritage site in the course is a major attraction for participants.

Left: Oko-no-taki Waterfall
Upper right: The Seibu Rindo Forest Path in the natural World Heritage portion of the island
Lower right: The finish line of the Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic

The founder of the Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic is Shin’ichiro Oshirabe, a certified guide of Yakushima. He is available for inquiries about the maranic as well as a variety of sports-themed activities and teambuilding exercises. He also travels off the island to give lectures, and is always on the look-out for official sponsors for the Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic.

MICE on Yakushima

The island’s unofficial maximum lodging capacity is around 1,000 guests per night. With high-speed ferry service to Ibusuki—one of Japan’s greatest hot spring resort areas—as well as the city of Kagoshima and the island of Tanegashima, off-island lodging is also an option, bringing slightly larger MICE into play.
Yakushima island is the perfect distance from the mainland (Kagoshima): close enough for convenience and far enough for the thrill of travel and adventure.
The island is ideal for MICE themed around nature, the environment, and sports. Or, given that Yakushima is the setting for the animated film Princess Mononoke, how about an anime-themed MICE?

Left: The Kigensugi cedar, a fixture in Japanese school textbooks
Right: A cedar more than 1,000 years old in Yakusugi Land nature park
白谷雲水峡。
The scenery of the Shiratani Unsui Ravine
A waterfall in the Shiratani Unsui Ravine

Yakushima Bless is a recently opened facility that sells original eco-friendly merchandise made of Yakusugi cedar. A unique venue for MICE, the facility also offers eco-friendly MICE novelties.

「YAKUSHIMA BLESS」。
Yakushima Bless

About the Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic

Host: Yakushima Sports Project (NPO)
Operator: Yakushima Ultramarathon Executive Committee
Supporters: Town of Yakushima, Yakushima Tourism Association, Yakushima Commercial and Industrial Association
Date: Sunday, January 12, 2020.
Start time: 05:00. Cut-off time: 21:00.
Maranic Eve celebration on Saturday, January 11 from 17:00-19:00.
Flat entry fee of 1,000 yen per person.

Shin’ichiro Oshirabe

At JAPAN MICE NAVI, we welcome inquiries about:

  • Holding MICE events
  • Applying to be an official sponsor of the Yakushima Ultra Eco Maranic
  • Holding MICE on Yakushima
  • Requesting a lecture by Shin’ichiro Oshirabe

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