Saturday, August 30, 2014

Battleship Island: Nagasaki City

Battleship Island Nagasaki has been on my radar now for  just over a year ever since i did a boat tour around the island about the sometime last year.  It was a real joy to see the structures from a distance but it made me more and more determined to get up close and personal and to touch the terra firma with my own 2 hands.  In order to get to Battleship Island Nagasaki which is officially known as Hashima Island you have to join a Japanese tour group with departures from various port terminals located downtown in Nagasaki.  The tour is quite reasonably priced at around 3800 yen or $35 US as its for about 3 hours and includes a nice boat tour around the magnificent Nagasaki Harbor and of course the chance to get onto Hashima Island and walk around and explore the area.

As with any type of area that the structures are unstable and could collapse at anytime, huge areas of land are now roped off as they are deemed to dangerous and a safety risk to the general public.  However with my camera and eagle eye i was able to see so many interesting areas that showed the true beauty of the area albeit worn and crumbling as a result of the buildings years and years of neglect and taking the brunt of the storms and typhoon that frequent the area on a regular basis.  It is this combination of strong winds, huge waves, build up of salt water rusting and lack of maintenance that has caused Battleship Island Nagasaki to look the way it does today.

The Japanese narration of the tour was quite informative and well documented but in truth words are not needed to explain and portray the way thousands of people lived on the island in its hey day.  I was able to summons all my imaginative powers to step back in time and truly believe that i was back in a thriving community on an island miles away from the nearest mainland.  It was a incredible experience, one that you will have too!

Absolutely a wonderful tour that i will recommend to anyone.

Please check out Battleship Island Nagasaki here on a map:

Please click on the photos below to enlarge:

This is where the swimming pool was!

Lots of areas are off limits now!

How much longer will be buildings stand?

Very popular tourist destination

Years of decline are showing

Not much left standing

Completely in ruins now

Here is a video of Battleship Island Nagasaki that i am sure you will enjoy:

Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Giant Cedar Tree: Nagasaki Prefecture

The Giant Cedar Tree located in a remote area of the Isahaya countryside is not such a well known attraction of the locals.  In fact if I asked 100 people in and around the area if they know where the largest Cedar Tree is in Nagasaki Prefecture I am absolutely sure they will have no idea that there is in fact a massive Cedar Tree here and if there was, where the exact location would be?

A small but interesting drive from the main road is the Giant Cedar Tree.  At first from a distance it doesn`t look anything impressive but gradually little by little as you inch closer and closer to the target the realm of the Cedar Trees real size becomes more evident.  The branches and limbs are just enormous and the trunk of the tree is bigger than can ever be expected!

The tree is so large that steel braces have had to be installed around the tree in order to create stability and reinforce strength where it is needed most.  The massive pillar needs all the power it can get to support the incredible weight that is above it in the form of branches and leaves.  I had a great walk around the area, looked at the tree from every angle and I can tell you that each and every location was impressive and reinforced just how big and massive Nagasaki`s Giant Cedar Tree really is.

I know the photos below don`t actually do the location justice but you can see that the area is pleasant to walk around and enjoy all things nature.

Click here to see Giant Cedar Tree on a map:

Please click on the photos below to enlarge:

Too big to describe!

Interesting contours

Massive trunk

Extra support needed now!

Here is a video of the Nagasaki Giant Cedar Tree: