The remote Bonin Islands are known in Japan as the Ogasawara Islands. This archipelago has earned the nickname, “Galapagos of the Orient” and was inscribed on UNESCO’s World Heritage List in 2011 for the unique plant and animal species that have evolved here. Chichijima, the “father island,” is the largest in the Ogasawara family of islands and yet another fantastic avian destination with several endemic species. Minamijima, a small uplifted coral island just south of the town, has a much photographed natural stone arch reflected in the small turquoise blue lagoon. Chichijima itself has good opportunities for swimming, snorkeling and sunbathing on one of the island’s pristine beaches. Next to the harbor is a humpback whale monument. Although these massive marine mammals migrate away from this area by April, sperm whales visit between May and November. Green turtles, spinner dolphins, and dogtooth tuna are some of the other larger marine creatures found.