Wednesday, August 28, 2019

WW2 Air Raid Shelter: Sasebo, Nagasaki Prefecture

There are numerous WW2 Air Raid Shelters still in existence today in and around Nagasaki Prefecture.  However the best and most interesting one that I have had the opportunity to find and explore is absolutely the one called Mukyudo which is located near Huis Ten Bosch in Sasebo,.

Mukyudo during World War II, was the air-raid shelter of the former Miyamura Elementary and Junior High School.  The reason why this Air Raid Shelter is unique when compared to others is the fact that both male and female students as well as their teachers at the time were responsible for making and maintaining the shelter.  Not only was the shelter used as a classroom in times of bombing by the Allied Forces but was also used by the community in and around the school.  As most of the towns members were elderly (most of the men were away fighting in the war) the students were basically responsible for protecting their community from foreign forces.

This site is not being preserved for laying blame! On the contrary, it is kept as a reminder of community spirit, group cohesion and to remind the younger generation about the historical significance of the area in regards to WW2.

There is a brochure in English provided to all international guests, there are signs but mostly in Japanese, however ones imagination and visual clues provided are more than enough to give you the insights in what it must have been like during these turbulent times in Japan and the World in general.

This attraction has slowly be surely become a popular site on our Nagasaki Cultural and Historical Tour.

Please check out the Mukyodo WW2 Air Raid Shelters here on a map:

Please click on the photos below to enlarge:

Depiction of the situation

The tools that were used

The entrance

Ring the bell for peace


The classroom

Please click on the video below to see more about the Mukyudo WW2 Air Raid Shelters:

Monday, August 5, 2019

Hakata Station Roof: Fukuoka City

Many of our Private Tour pick ups and or drop off originate from Hakata Station in Fukuoka City.  Basically, Hakata Station is the most centrally located area of Fukuoka City and the mainstay for incoming and outgoing travel into the City limits.

As a result of this, evert Tom, Dick and Chieko are driven towards Hakata Station like flies to honey.  It is a shoppers delight with any and every shop you could desire.  It`s a hang out destination for the younger Japanese Millennials so be prepared to be crowded like sardines because from morning to night the place is packed and this is no joke.

However, there is a secret spot to take a timeout if you get overawed with the situation.  It is on the roof of the building and it serves 2 purposes.  It`s main purpose is to showcase Fukuoka City by giving you a Panoramic 360 degree view of the city and outlying area.  I always find it essential on my private tours to give people an idea on actually how Mountainous the areas around Fukuoka City really are.

Once we have our bearings, I usually take the group and participate in a small blessing at the Shrine that is dedicated to safe travels.  Quite a lot of Japanese travelers will come to the roof, give a blessing to the Shrine and then catch their train to their destination.  To many people this has become second nature just like buying a ticket for their journey.

Finally, there are also aspects of nature of the roof, the sounds of running water, flowers, plants and you wouldn`t believe it a miniature Rice Paddy to show you how intertwined rice is in daily life here in Japan.

It`s just a great way to start the tour and the beginning of our great day together.
I am sure you will agree at the end of the day.

Please click here to see Hakata Station on a map:

Please click on the photos below to enlarge:
Roof View

Convenient location close to Asia

Growing rice as well!

Travel around Kyushu

Please click on the following videos to see more about these 2 interesting places on the roof of Hakata Station.