Saturday, October 8, 2011


Nagasaki is one of those places I have always wanted to visit since moving to Japan, I was lucky enough to find some time this past summer.
Nagasaki is south of Nagoya, located on the island of Kyushu.  Below is the front of Nagasaki station.
One reason I wanted to visit Nagasaki is to see the atomic bomb museum and adjacent peace park.  According to the sign below, it's all to the right. 
I did not take any photos inside museum but there were many sad exhibits, the accounts of what happen and the record of everyone who passed away during the bomb.  Around the museum is a large peace park with many statues and paper cranes.
The statue below was designed by a local Nagasaki person to commemorate the 50th anniversary, it was dedicated in 1997.  The child in the mother's arms represents Japan on the day of the atomic bombing, the mother is all the countries that came to help and make Japan who she is today.
This monument, Hypocenter Cenotaph, marks the location of ground zero.
Simular to Hiroshima, there are paper cranes everywhere.  These are typically folded as school projects and displayed at the park as a sign of peace.
Me infront of the Fountain of Peace, in the area known as the Zone of Hope.
More cranes.
This is the famous Peace Statue, erected in 1955.  There are some symbols in the statue, The right hand points to the threat of nuclear weapons, the let hand symbolizes world peace, the face expresses prayerfulness with eyes closed in the memory of those who died.  The folded right leg symbolizes quiet meditation while the left leg is poised for action in assisting humanity.
From the peace park, there is a walking path that goes pass different shrines and monuments, below is the sign leading up to the Sanno Shinto Shrine. Toilet to the right, 130 meters.
The in-formal name for this is the one-legged torii, it was partly destroyed in the blast but maintained as a monument.  The hypocenter is about 800 meters away.
The torii was also rotated about 30 degrees, it's amazing this half still remains standing.  The parts of the torii that fell are kept about 3 meters behind on the ground.
The stone below was once the center of the torii.
Looking up from the stairs leading up to the shrine.
Another site in Nagasaki, not related to the atomic bomb is the Memorial to the Martyrdom of the 26 saints of Japan.  
These are 26 catholic saints who were prosecuted in 1587 and were sainted under Pope Pius IX.
Another popular part of Nagasaki is Chinatown.  I'm not sure if I was lucky or if a chinese party happens here daily, but I showed up there just in time for a parade and fireworks show.
Chinatown is kind of + shaped, and at each end of the plus is little shrines with burning incense.  Also at each of these tables are food and pig-heads.
The parade was a large dragon that ran down the center of the plus and on to a park.  The dragon would stop throughout the walk to dance and scare little kids.
Below the dragon is doing a dance, running in circles trying to tie itself into a knot.
Here the dragon is about to exit the covered area, safely cross the street and go to the park
At the park, the dragon continued to dance on stage, people over here were enjoying BBQ and draft beer.
Are are a couple of famous bridges along the Nagashima River in central Nagasaki.  The most famous of which is below, it's called spectacles, because of the reflection it makes with the river.

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