Kawachi Fuji Garden

Nature, Travel

Kawachi Fuji garden is a private wisteria garden. It is located in Kitakyushu City, Japan and was established in 1977. This 10,000 square meter wide garden is home to about 150 wisteria flowering plants. There are 22 different species (white, blue, purple, violet-blue and pink) of wisteria growing in this garden. The garden’s main attractions are the 80 and the 220-meter long wisteria tunnels. During the peak season, colorful wisteria flowers cover the whole garden and create pastel-colored fairytale tunnels.The wisteria tunnels became extremely popular in 2012. As a result, Kawachi Fuji Garden is now a popular tourist attraction for visitors from all over the world. You can see wisteria trees which are more than 100 years old here. You can also relax while being surrounded by wisteria flowers, taking a break and enjoying lunch under a beautiful wisteria trellis.

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Kawachi Fuji Garden Access

Air

Fukuoka Airport is the nearest international airport you in the area.
But for those who are coming from nearby cities Kitakyushu domestic airport is also accessible.

Train

From Hakata station (Fukuoka City), take JR line to JR Yahata station, then take Nishitetsu bus #56 from Yahata Station and get off at Kawachi Elementary School. It may take about 10-15 min walk to the garden.

Car

The place is accessible by car. However, bear in mind that parking spaces near the garden is limited. And since the peak season usually falls during the golden week holidays in Japan, thousands of people from different prefectures visit the garden. You may come before the gates open to avoid getting stuck in a long waiting line.

Official site: http://www.city.kitakyushu.lg.jp/kensetu/file_0218.html

Art at Ogi Park

Nature, Travel
Ogi park in Saga Prefecture is famous for cherry blossoms. This 300 – year – old park is home to more than 3,000 cherry blossom trees. According to the Japan Cherry Blossom Association, Ogi park is one of the 100 best places to see sakura here in Japan. The breathtaking view of this park attracts not only tourists, but also artists and photographers from different parts of Japan.

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I don’t paint, but I  really like art. And while I was walking around the park, I saw this skillful artist. I paused for a while and looked at his painting. He’s great. I was impressed, and I enjoyed watching this guy doing his masterpiece.

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IMG_6922 - コピーArt definitely inspires people, including kids.

Hirado City, Japan

Culture, Nature, Travel

Hirado City, Japan

By: Mark I.Quijano

Located in the northwestern corner of Kyushu, Hirado City is one of the best places to visit in southern Japan.

What makes this city unique? 

I’ve been to Nagasaki city and other parts of Nagasaki prefecture several times, but Hirado city remains on the top of my lists of places to visit in the future. This city has lots of interesting things to explore. And for me, the irresistible beauty of nature and the century-old business and Christian history of Hirado make this little city unique.

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Obae Lighthouse

Located at the northern tip of Ikitsuki Island, this lighthouse is standing at the top of the steep cliffs. The lighthouse is officially called “Obae Hana Lighthouse”. It was built in 1958. This lighthouse is one of the few lighthouses in Japan where one can climb up and enjoy the views from the viewing deck for free. From the tower, anyone can see the sweeping views of the sea and the green scenery that covers the entire Island. The beautiful sunset is also favorably visible from here. This lighthouse is visited by both local and foreign tourists and has become one of the iconic places of Hirado.

IMG_8160Hirado Castles

Religious History

Japan is one of the most developed countries in the world today. It has a rich Christian history that began in early 1500. However, recent statistics shows that only 1 percent of Japan’s total population practice Christianity.

In 1550, Christian faith was brought to Hirado by Francisco Xavier. But, in 1587, Hideyoshi Toyotomi issued an interdict against the Christian faith in fear of a decline in political power and started a severe suppression of the Christian community. Christianity was also prohibited in the Edo Period. Many Christians were executed in the first half of the 17th century. Others decided to move to the Islands of Nagasaki, particularly in Hirado or (Firando) to escape death from persecutions.

At the moment, there are at least 130 Catholic Churches in Nagasaki prefecture, the main area for Christians in Japan. Other Christian denominations such as Seventh Day Adventists and Baptists are now present in this prefecture.

IMG_8167 - コピー - コピーTourists have their photo taken in front of Hirado Church
 St. Francis Xavier Memorial Church (Hirado Church)

The record shows that this Church was originally built in 1913 and reconstructed in 1931 at its current location. As part of the 1971 memorial celebrations of St. Francis Xavier’s visit to Hirado, a statue of the missionary was erected here and the church was renamed to St. Francis Xavier Memorial Church. It is now one of Hirado’s popular tourist spots and a well-known landmark of the city.

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The interior part of the famous St. Francis Church.

IMG_8321Gaspar-sama Martyrdom Site

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IMG_8215 - コピーIkitsuki basalt columns

In Hirado, Ikitsuki Island is one of the 100 special sights in Nagasaki prefecture these days. It is blessed with cliffs. Halfway up the coast there are rock formations that always amazed visitors, the Ikitsuki basalt  columns or “shiodawara” in Japanese, which means “salt bag”.The rock cracked vertically so it creates pillar-like rock formations. For photographers, to get a good angle of the rocks is quite difficult. One must go down from the top of the clip a bit. The path is very narrow so the exploration is quite tricky and dangerous, but there’s no other way down. Just be careful.

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Rice fields

In this city, guests need not worry about foods because locally produced rice are available in the market. Fresh marine products are also available at the market everyday.

Tenzan (天山), Saga Prefecture, Japan

Nature, Travel

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As far as I can remember, the  last time I climb a mountain was in 2010. I climbed South Korea’s Mt. Neajang. This year, if God permits, I am going to climb the world-famous Mt. Fuji of Japan. But considering the fact that Mt.Fuji is 3,776 m high, I should really have to prepare my self physically and mentally.  So on my 35th birthday, I decided to climb Mt. Ten, locally known as Tenzan.

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Tenzan(1,046 m), the second highest peak in Saga Prefecture.

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Ogi City

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IMG_8120Here’s what I saw at the top of Mt.Tenzan. Some climbers kneeled down and whispered a prayer in front of this structure. 

IMG_8118   This sign encourages the climbers to take extra care to protect the Mountain from fire and other possible harms.

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IMG_8078 Climbers on their way down.

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Nothing is impossible to this father and daughter tandem. They believed they could, and they made it!  This guy climbed Tenzan with his daughter comfortably clinging on his back.

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Youtube Video courtesy of monkist’s channel

Keya, Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan

Nature, Travel

Keya beach – a beautiful place to visit this summer

I love summer. My whole family loves summer. In fact, our summer would always be incomplete without any summer escapade. We are just a bunch of beach goers.

Here are the photos of our wonderful summer get away this year.

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Do you want to book this place for your next trip? Here are some information about it.

How to get there?

If you are coming via Saga airport, the place is accessible by car. It takes about 1-2 hours drive. If you are from Fukouka City, you may take JR Chikuhi line and get off at Chikuzen maebaru station. Then, you have to take Showa bus bound for Keya and get off at Keya bus stop.

Foods

You can bring your own foods or you may also eat in some restaurants located in the area.

Accommodations

I haven’t seen any hotels near the beach, but I saw some people staying in the tent. I guess you can also bring your own tent if you wish to do so.