Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Arima Christian Heritage Museum: Shimabara Peninsular, Nagasaki Prefecture

The Arima Christian Heritage Museum in Nagasaki is an interesting place that one can see and interact with many facets of Japanese History and especially its interaction and involvement with people from other countries through culture, trade and religious experimentation.

The Museum is well signposted in English, has enough literature and footnotes as well as a 10 minute video to explain the histories and problems of the day in which Christianity was outlawed and those that continued to follow their faith (even though the consequences meant death) were dealt with in the most gruesome manner.

No stone is unturned at the Arima Christian Heritage Museum as all topic of reference are discussed in full details.  These include the Martyring of Nagasaki Christians, the connection between trade and evil forces from abroad, as well as the Hara Castle massacre whereby 37 000 peasant Christians were murdered as a result of their unwillingness to stop practicing their faith and because of their defiance to follow the rank and file orders of their over bearing Lord of the time.

I will recommend this place to anyone who has an interest in the history of the Nagasaki Christians, as there is just enough information to fill in the gaps and to provide a picture worth viewing.  However because of the Museum`s remote location most probably a Private Tour will be needed to access this and other remote places.

Please click on the click to see Arima Christian Heritage Museum in Nagasaki on a map:

Click on the photos below to enlarge:

Renounce your faith or else!

Christianity arrived in Japan with the traders

An interesting 10 minute video with subtitles

Christians being Martyred

The Arima Christian Heritage Museum

Religious cleansing


The Hara Castle Massacre

Rebellion forces holding out the lords soldiers

The end result 37 000 Christian dead


Please check out these videos below to see more about the Arima Christian Heritage Museum Nagasaki:

Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Mount Fugen: Unzen, Nagasaki Prefecture

Mount Fugen in Nagasaki is the second highest peak of Unzen which dominates the Shimabara peninsula. Mount Fugen is well known for its volcanic activity that last peaked in a period from 1990 to 1995.  Even today, many reports about volcanoes  invariably mentions Unzen when it comes to massive pyroclastic flows.  The most severe occurred on June 13, 1991 when 34 people were killed in an area that was rated as safe.

On my Private Nagasaki Tours, and only when the weather deems so, I will drive to the lookout and give everyone the opportunity to see the Volcano and Lava Dome up close.  It's a tremendous and uplifting site for sure.

Click on the photos below to enlarge:

The Peak

Vegetation has grown

Views of Shimabara below

Currently, the two highest peaks of Unzen are Mount Fugen (1359m) and Heisei Shinzan (1483m). Until the last period of volcanic activity, Mount Fugen was the highest point in the Unzen complex. It lost this title with the growth of a new lava dome that has been named Heisei Shinzan.  At 1483 meters, the new peak outperforms Mount Fugen by more than 100 meters.

Mount Fugen makes for a fantastic access point from the Unzen Hot Spring town and can be well combined with a visit of Shimabara to the east as well as the town of Obama to the west for a great day out!  Combine all 3 places and your day will just about be perfect from every point of view.

Mount Fugen Nagasaki is one of my favorite places to visit, just to see the huge lava dome sends shivers up my spine no matter where I am standing on the Shimabara Peninsular.  Mount Fugen Nagasaki can be climbed, it can be viewed also in various way, one by walking up to the lookout which is only about 200 meters from the carpark but there are quite an amount of stairs to contend with and secondly from the ropeway which will take you right up to the peak and within the parameters of its heart and soul.  I am sure it will provide you with a similar moving experience where ever it may be viewed from.

Look at Mount Fugen in Nagasaki Prefecture on a map!

1st National Park in Japan