Photographer was in the right place at the right time, because now he can’t go back.

Like a lot of people who love photography, Japanese Twitter user @wasabitool makes a point of keeping a camera close at hand. That turned out to be a very good decision one day when he was driving through Japan’s Wakayama Prefecture.

As the road wound its way through a densely forested section of the mountains, @wasabitool noticed something out of the corner of his eye. Next to the road was a lake, and for some reason the waterline was unusually high. Thinking it’d make for some good photos, @wasabitool pulled over and stepped out of his car, which was when he noticed something else: there was no wind blowing, and the air being still had turned the surface of the lake into a perfectly reflective mirror.

With the water so high, the trees’ trunks were hidden, leaving nothing but visions of verdant branches and mountainsides in @wasabitool’s field of view. Then, just when the moment seemed like it couldn’t get any more ideally beautiful, somehow it did.

As @wasabitool was snapping his photos, a single boat floated by, with one of its passengers wearing a bright red jacket that created a breathtaking contrast with the rest of the scenery, and the ripples of its wake make it look like some sort of magical airship sailing through a sphere of green Gaia.

But while @wasabitool is happy to share these photos with everyone, he’s unfortunately unable to guide anyone to the spot where he took them. As mentioned above, he wasn’t actually looking for the lake, but simply happened to drive by it while on his way to somewhere else. Later on, when he got home, he tried to find it on a map, but couldn’t, and in the two years since he took the pictures (which he shared on Twitter late last month), he’s been unable to remember exactly where it is.

The added mystery has prompted various commenters to speculate that he might have unknowingly wandered into the Pure Lands from Square-Enix role-playing game Secret of Mana, the paradise of Togenkyo described in classical Chinese literature, or perhaps one of the works of Japanese painter Kaii Higashiyama, like the one shown below.

Of course, someone with as keen an eye and talent with a camera as @wasabitool has newer pictures with which to dazzle us too.

Because even if he can’t find his way back to that lake in Wakayama, Japan still has plenty of beauty waiting to be found where you least expect it.

Sources: Twitter/@wasabitool, @wasabitool blog
Images: Twitter/@wasabitool
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Follow Casey on Twitter, where he highly recommends the tuna sashimi in Wakayama’s Katsuura.