The only time nature seems to make the news is when it is doing something destructive.
Hurricane, earthquakes, tsunamis, these acts of nature take priority in our everyday discussions. But as a whole, nature is a really beautiful thing. There are few things that are more calming than wandering through the shaded grounds beneath a canopy of trees or blooming foliage. Whether formed by nature or shaped by the hand of man, these beautiful locations offer a quiet respite from the outside world.
Tunnel of Wisteria Flowers at Kawachi Fuji Gardens: Kitakyushu, Japan
The Kawachi Fuji Gardens in Kitakyushu, Japan, is home to a beautiful, fairytale-like wisteria tunnel. Pastel-colored passageway lends to an ethereal, almost other-worldly feel. The vine is easily trained, which makes it ideal for use in an arbortectural design. The best time to visit this tunnel in person is in the spring when the flowers are in full bloom.
M-119 Tunnel of Trees: Harbor Springs, Michigan
The Tunnel of Trees in Northern Michigan is a 16-mile scenic road that beings in Harbor Spring and ends in Cross Village. The road, which was designated as a Scenic Heritage Route, is not for the faint of heart. It lacks a center line, which means it can be a little tricky to maneuver at certain times of the year. The tunnel is bordered by a beautiful hardwood forest. The foliage means that it is lush green in the spring and summer, beautifully painted in the autumn and offers an icy overlook of Lake Michigan in the winter. No matter what time of year you visit, it is worth the trip.
Ginkgo Tree Tunnel: Japan
Ginkgo has a special place in Japanese culture. After the Hiroshima bombing, there were six gingko trees that survived and continued to not only grow, but flourish. Because of this, the flower is known as “the survivor.” Outside of Meiji Shrine in Tokyo, Japan there is a tunnel of approximately 65,000 gingko trees that make up this canopy of golden leaves, creating a calming beauty for those who meander below.
Though these examples are unique to the regions in which they reside, chances are there is a similar urban oasis near you. Get out and explore the beauty!