So the following day, my journey continues albeit the rainy weather. Lucky for me I brought my windbreaker coat, so travelling in the rainy autumn day was not a problem at all.
1. Nagasakibana, Chiran City (More info here)
My first stop was to visit the southern most tip of Japan, which is to Nagasakibana located in Chiran City. This place has an amazing legendary story that comes with it explaining how this spot is adored by the locals (and tourists). It was told that a long time ago, a fisherman called Urashima Taro lived in this area. One day, he saved a turtle who was beaten by the kids in this area. The turtle expressed his gratitude towards Urashima and invited him to a palace under the sea.
Urashima followed the turtle and lived under the sea for a few years where he met Princess Toyotama. Years later, he suddenly felt like returning to the shore, and before he did, the princess gifted him with a box. She told him not to ever open the box because there is one important thing in it.
Being tempted by the box, Urashima finally opened it and found himself turning to an old man. Apparently while he was living under the sea, time actually froze for him that's why he never grew old. The Urashima realised that the most important thing the princess meant was "a span of life".
And since the ocean was where Urashima and the princess met, it was believed that Nagasakibana is a sacred place for love. Hence why everyone who came here writes their name and their loved ones on seashells and made prayers for everlasting love. I wrote mine for the fun of it though hihi..
Vessels filled with lots and lots of seashells! Can you imagine how many people have come here for visits? :D
This is how the structure of the wishing temple looks like in bright hues of red and white, facing the Kaimondake volcano mountain.
2. Chiran Peace Museum for Kamikaze Pilots (More info here)
The next place we went to was full of feels. This is where they compiled items and findings from the World War II that happened in 1945. The war was between America and Japan, and Japan lost the war with so many soldiers died during the attack. We couldn't take images of the museum on the inside to respect the privacy of the family of the soldiers involved, but I can tell you this visit has touched me so much.
There is a section where all the images of the deceased soldiers in black and white were portrayed and the museum has compiled all their individual letters they had sent to their loved ones knowing that they might die in the war. Lucky for us, they have it in English translations so I had the opportunity to read some of em.
I even asked our tour guide if they had them compiled in a book cause I would like to get it, but sadly they don't.
Some statues and fighter jet replicas are portrayed on the compound of the museum which brings back clear imagery even though we weren't literally in the war itself. Going through the details the museum provided ultimately gave me a sense of relief and syukur that I am living in such a peaceful country and era such as Malaysia.
3. Samurai Residence, Kagoshima (More info here)
Yup, you read the subtitle right. This was one of my favourite visits while in Kyushu I tell you. I can't believe my eyes when walking around this residential area that is preserved till today for us to see. I mean, samurais, man! Their houses! Crazyyyyy! :D
Each house has a unique set of garden that they have to represent the earth while complimenting the view of the mountains they have behind this residential area. Would you look at those cutesy trees and rocks? Some were purposely shaped like a turtle, dragon and even cranes.
Classic Japanese houses that are still used till today. Probably the family from the samurai lineage still lives here to maintain the structure so that it won't die through time.
I would like a garden like this for me too please! :D
4. Satsuma Kiriko (Glass) Making Experience (More info here)
This session was highly anticipated by me! I specifically enjoyed doing DIY stuff so to have them in my itinerary was obviously the highlight of my trip. We made a visit to Karukan Factory and helped ourselves to making ourselves some glass jewelleries.
So many colours to choose from! These pieces are basically remnants from their works, so they gave us the opportunity to play with it :D
Yours truly trying out how to carve the glass with a diamond cutter, and trying to act all pro while doing this thing. It wasn't easy okay! My jewellery turned out fugly I dare not show it here hahahaha! But the experience was definitely worth it :D
Me in action, trying my best to not mess up. But I failed hahaha.
This is how the ones sold at their gallery looks like. A million times better than the one I made ok. XD
See you in my next post, dearies! :D