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Islands can quickly lose their charm when they become attached to land masses. This, mercifully, has not happened to Ikuchijima Island in Japan’s Geiyo archipelago, a cluster of islets in the Seto Inland Sea that, despite its two connecting bridges, feels defiantly detached.

Writers have often compared the rocky outcroppings of the Seto Inland Sea to the Greek Islands. The ripening oranges, olive terraces, lavender-smelling grasses and clove scents, the vernal purity of forested slopes, the sails of distant fishing skiffs, and small shrines cantilevered over rock faces, can easily evoke the wine-dark Aegean Sea.

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