Forest Therapy in Bellingham

We are fortunate to live in a location which parallels the well-studied forests of Japan in terms of botanical diversity and climate. Our native conifers emit  phytoncides identical to the trees found in Japan which are responsible for numerous health-promoting effects. Here in Bellingham we have an abundance of walking trails which wind through these trees, many which are near running water and populations of birds, two factors which have physiological benefits. Now that a substantial body of research exists which shows the impact of forest "bathing," it is time for Bellingham to create a dedicated trail system for the purpose of improving the function of both the mind and the body. 

Akasawa Forest

Carolyn Watson traveled to the Akasawa Forest Therapy Center in 2018 to assess the trails and ameneties and determine the feasiblity of creating a similar center here in Bellingham. Learn more about this remarkable forest. 

Bellingham Plan

Where are potential sites in Bellingham suitable for practicing forest therapy? What will it take to make these areas more accessible  and more effective for experiencing health and wellness benefits? Learn more about the community plan here.  


What is Forest Therapy? How is it different than just taking a walk in a park? Learn more about the health benefits experienced from spending time in a forest. 


Are you interested in learning how to help others experience the benefits of Japanese-style Forest Therapy? Learn more about our upcoming Forest Therapy Guide trainings.