Singing praises of the oceans  

Singing praises of the oceans

In Japan, mid-July brings an excuse to head to the beach. That"s because this time of year marks Marine Day (aka Ocean Day), an observance recognizing the close bond the island nation shares with the seas and ocean that surround it. Because Marine Day roughly coincides with the end of the rainy season, it has, over the years, become a sort of unofficial kickoff to the hot summer season. One place sure to attract visitors is the picturesque Minokake-Iwa rock formation seen here, lying off the island of Honshu and its mountainous 31-mile-long Izu Peninsula.

© Krzysztof Baranowski/Getty Images

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