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Posts Tagged ‘Hell’

She’s a Tall Drink of Water

Posted by Heliocentrism on July 5, 2011

May 2, 2011

All Pictures

Afro-Samurai

Nice Castle

We saw Kumamoto castle, because that’s just want you do when you’re in this part of Kyushu. If this had been the first castle I had ever seen in Asia, I might have been more in awe. But I’ve seen hundreds of these things, and like temples, they stop being spectacular after a while.

Jibo Kannon Statue

What is with me and Hell?

What we really enjoyed this day was the giant Jibo statue. The statue is of a loving mother holding her child. I guess that people, especially women, come here when they want to get pregnant.

We walked up the many flights of stairs to get to the head of the tall lady. It was hot, but we were promised a grand view of the city. It was a good thing I brought some water with me, because climbing in that heat made me very thirsty.

The view was not grand. The city is not big, but even if it were, we would not have been able to see it. The windows in the lady’s head were so small. We had to take turns looking out of them. But that was ok, we didn’t really care about the view anyway. We came for what was in the basement.

We ran down to the basement. We knew that Hell awaited us.

He got what he deserved.

I have visited many hells in many cities. I went to Buddhist Hell in Thailand, along with many mini hells at various temples. There was one hell placed in the foot of a huge Buddha. I’ve also visited a small town in China that was made up to look like the Taoist Hell. It was fan-tas-TIC.

I see you’re making a stew.

The hell we visited on this day was underground. We were a lot cooler in hell than we were in the statue. There were animatronic beasts and demons torturing souls. I have no idea what they said, since it was all in Japanese, but the lighting or lack thereof, made it nice a spooky. This is definitely not a place for kids.

stepping back in time

Look what I dug up!

Our next stop was at the Yoshinogari Historical Park. If I ever go to Saga again, I will go back to this park, because we showed up very late in the day. The thing I really wanted to see, the active dig area, was closed by the time we arrived.

We rushed around for half an hour trying to see what we could, but there just wasn’t enough time. If we had known that we would not have been able to find our campsite, which was a few towns over from the park, we would have just found a cheap hotel nearby and gone again the next day.

But we didn’t. We searched for our campsite, then for any campsite, then when I was too tired to drive, we checked into a creepy love motel on the side of the road.

next time

Save the Bones

I already know what you’re thinking…

“She wasn’t impressed with Kumamoto Castle, but old bones and pottery, she likes?”

Well, I see castles everyday. There’s one downtown in Oita city. I’ve seen many castles in England, Korea, China, and Thailand. Well, in Thailand they are actually palaces, but really what’s the difference besides some glitter?

But I’ve haven’t seen many historical dig sites. In fact this one brought the number of dig sites I’ve seen to a whopping… 2. The other one was the Terracotta Army in Xi’an, China.  This one had actual archaeologists working at the site looking for stuff. So yes, this was more interesting than the castle.

All Pictures


 

Japan
(日本)
(Nippon)

How to get there:

You can enter Japan by plane or boat. Though, the number of boats going to Japan from other countries has gone down significantly.

Americans get 90-day visas to Japan at the port of entry. Check with your nearest Japanese embassy or consulate for visa information.

Phone:

Website:

Downloads:

Videos:

Books:

Notes:

  • Be careful what over the counter drugs you bring into Japan.  Actifed, Sudafed, Vicks inhalers, and Codeine are prohibited.
  • InternationalATMs are really hard to find; more so if you aren’t in a big city. Many places in Japan do not use credit cards. Take cash and call yourbanktoaskwhatATMs or banks in Japan will work with your cash card.
    • ATMs have opening hours. Usually 9:00-18:00 (They have better work hours than most business men and women here.)
  • You can get a Japan Railway, pass which saves you a lot of money on the trains, but you can only buy it before you get to Japan and you cannot be a resident of Japan. (I don’t have more information about it because I’ve only ever lived in Japan. I’ve never been a tourist.)

Kumamoto Castle
(熊本城)
(Kumamoto-jō)

How to get there:

  • 32°48’22.5″N 130°42’20.8″E

From Oyano –

  • Get back on route 266.
  • Turn left (east) on route 57.
  • Turn left (north) on route 3.
  • Follow the signs to the Kumamoto Castle parking lot.

Phone:

  • (096) 352-5900

Website:

e-mail: Kumamotojou@City.kumamoto.lg.jp

Cost:

  • Parking is 100YEN/hour
  • Adults 500YEN
  • Kids 200YEN
  • Parts of the castle cost more to see

Hours:

  • 8:30 – 18:00 most of the year
  • 8:30 – 17:00 from November to March
  • Closed December 29 – 31

Notes:


Jibo Kannon Statue
at Naritasan Temple
(久留米成田山)
(Kurume Naritayama)

How to get there:

  • 33°17’05.8″N 130°32’06.6″E

From Kumamoto Castle –

  • Get back on route 3 heading north.
  • Once you get to the town of Makitsumachi look out for road#86. Take a right (east) at the next light after road #86.
  • Follow the map below.

Address:

1386-22 Kamitsu-machi,
Kurume-shi, 830-0052 Fukuoka

Phone:

  • 0942-21-7500

Website:

Cost:

  • Free Parking
  • Adults – 500 Yen;
  • Junior High and High School students – 300 Yen;
  • Elementary School students and younger – 100 Yen

Hours:

  • 9:00 – 17:00

Notes:

  • Make sure to go to the Hell section. You get there by going through the feet of the statue.

Yoshinogari Historical Park
(吉野ヶ里 遺跡)
(Yoshinogari iseki)

How to get there:

From the Jibo Statue –

  • Get back on route 3 heading north
  • Take a left (west) on route 209
  • Stay strain on route 264 which will turn into road 22
  • Turn left (southwest) on route 34
  • At the 6th light, turn right (north) on route 385
  • The park will be on your left

Phone:

  • 0952-55-9351

Website:

e-mail: himika@yoshinogari.jp

Cost:

  • Parking 300YEN flat rate
  • Adult 400YEN

Hours:

  • 9:00 – 17:00
  • The dig site closes at 16:30

Map:

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Posted in Fukuoka 県, Japan, Kanzaki 市, Kumamoto 県, Kurume 市, Kyūshū, Saga 県 | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

A Cold Day in Hell

Posted by Heliocentrism on February 3, 2011

January 30, 2011

All Pictures

The gates of hell

I finally went to Hell.

I have been planning on going to Hell since my mom and nephew came to visit. The list of reasons I haven’t gone yet just kept getting longer and longer. When Mark got back to Japan from his trip to Korea I told him that he had to take me to Hell. Every weekend since we have planned to go, but something has always come up.

RUN!

Then this week we decided to put away all our excuses and go to Hell. We were going to wake up early-ish on Saturday and make a day of it. But that didn’t happen.

We actually spent the day watching Star Trek. (Yes, I said it!) By noon, we did not feel like going out into the cold and driving to Beppu. But we promised each other that Sunday would be the day for Hell.

thirsty

Is that snow!?

On Sunday we got up early-ish, got dressed, and headed out the door. When we opened the door of the apartment we saw that it was snowing. A part of me wanted to turn right around and stay in my warm apartment, but I knew that if I didn’t go that day, I would never go.

Smells like an atomic fart.

Lamer in Person

I have to say that photos of Beppu’s Hell don’t do it justice. Wait, I mean they do it more than justice. It looks way cooler in pictures than it does in real life. And that’s not just because I was cold the whole time. The pictures make Beppu’s Hell out to be a super exciting and exotic steamy place, but it’s just steamy. Plus there’s no rotting egg smell in the photos.

The “zoo” at one of the onsens is very sad. They have a hippo, an elephant, and some flamingos freezing out in the snow. I’m not sure, but I think that counts as cruelty to animals.

The onsens are nice to look at, but not as nice and the pictures present them. It would be better if people could get in and warm up. But the hot springs are too hot for that. It would literally cook you if you fell in. In fact, at one of the onsens, you can buy eggs that were cooked in the hot spring.

now to defrost my feet

I recommend a visit if you’re in the neighborhood, but don’t come all the way out here for this.

All Pictures


 

Japan
(日本)
(Nippon)

How to get there:

You can enter Japan by plane or boat. Though, the number of boats going to Japan from other countries has gone down significantly.

Americans get 90-day visas to Japan at the port of entry. Check with your nearest Japanese embassy or consulate for visa information.

Phone:

Website:

Downloads:

Videos:

Books:

Notes:

  • Be careful what over the counter drugs you bring into Japan.  Actifed, Sudafed, Vicks inhalers, and Codeine are prohibited.
  • InternationalATMs are really hard to find; more so if you aren’t in a big city. Many places in Japan do not use credit cards. Take cash and call your bank to askwhatATMs or banks in Japan will work with your cash card.
    • ATMs have opening hours. Usually 9:00-18:00 (They have better work hours than most business men and women here.)
  • You can get a Japan Railway, pass which saves you a lot of money on the trains, but you can only buy it before you get to Japan and you cannot be a resident of Japan. (I don’t have more information about it because I’ve only ever lived in Japan. I’ve never been a tourist.)

Beppu Hell Onsen
(Beppu Jigoku)
(別府地獄)

How to get there:

  • Coordinates 33°18’57.2″N 131°28’10.8″E

From Oita City –

  • Head north on route 10.
  • Turn left on route 500. (The turn is just before the Las Vagas pachinko parlor.)
  • Keep on 500,
  • then turn right at the light after the intersection with route 218. You should see lot of steam rising from the ground.
  • Park anywhere that’s reasonable.
  • Six of the Hell osens are within walking distance of each other.
  • There are two others that are about a 5 minute drive from the directions given above.

By Bus –

  • Take bus #2, #5, #9, #41, or #43 from JR Beppu Station to the Umijigoku-mae stop

Address:

There are 8 Hell Onsens. Seven of which, are within a walking distance from each other. The other two are a bus or car ride away. Please ask at the ticket counter for bus information.

  1. Oniishibozu Jigoku (鬼石坊主地獄)
  2. UmiJigoku (海地獄)
    • 別府地獄めぐり
      日本
      〒874-0000 大分県別府市大字鉄輪559−1
      0977-66-1577
  3.  Yama Jigoku (山地獄)
  4. KamadoJigoku (かまど地獄)(Cooking Pot Hell)
    • かまど地獄
      日本
      〒874-0045 大分県別府市御幸5
      0977-66-0178
  5. Oniyama Jigoku (鬼山地獄)
  6. Shiraike Jigoku (白池地獄)
  7. Tatsumaki Jigoku (龍巻地獄)
  8. ChinoikeJigoku (血の池地獄) (BloodOnsen)
    • 別府 血の池地獄
      野田778 Beppu, Oita Prefecture 874-0016, Japan

Phone:

  • 0977-66-1577

Website (Blood Onsen)

Download:

Cost:

  • 400YEN each or
  • 2,000YEN for all 8

Hours:

  • 8:00 – 17:00
  • Go to Tatsumaki-Jigoku (the onsen with the geyser last if you’re running out of time because this one stays open later so that visitor can see the geyser blow at the end of the day.)

Notes:

  • It might not be worth a trip all the way to Beppu just to see this. But if you are in Oita prefecture, why not?
  • You cannot get into any of the hell onsen. There are a couple that you can put your feet into, but no full body soaking.

Map:

Posted in Beppu 市, Japan, Kyūshū, Oita 県 | Tagged: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Buddhist Hell

Posted by Heliocentrism on February 14, 2010

February 6, 2010

All Pictures

Wat Saen Suk

The Return to a Hell

A few years ago I went to Fengdu and visited the Taoist Hell there. I was hoping that this Buddhist hell would be similar, but it wasn’t. This hell was smaller. But it was easier to find and not as remote. I still had a great time.

It was very hot in Hell as with anywhere in Thailand. After Hell, we decided to head to the beach in hopes of finding a restaurant with air conditioning. Luckily for us, there was a hotel pretty near the gate of the temple and it did in fact have air conditioning.

Ordering food. Take your time boys.

The Chocolate Water

After lunch we walked to the beach. I didn’t really want to go swimming at first. The water was pretty brown and not calm at all. Plus, it was very shallow. It just wasn’t a good beach for swimming. But it was a really hot day and brown, choppy, shallow water is better than nothing, so Mark and I jumped in.

Time to go shopping!

Walking Along the Beach and See What’s there to eat

After Mark and I had had enough of swimming in brown water we went for a walk down the market street along the beach. There were so many vendors non-aggressively peddling their wares.

When in Thailand DON’T eat the female horseshoe crabs!!!

Mark and John spotted some horseshoe crabs for sale. The vendor would grill them up for whomever would buy them. John and Mark dared each other to try some horseshoe crab. Mark was about to take up the dare when the vendor flipped a crab over. The underside is not very appetizing. Mark past.

By the way… If you’re ever in the mood to eat horseshoe crab, remember one thing. Never eat a female horseshoe crab from Thailand. If she is pregnant and you eat one of the eggs inside her, you could die. Horseshoe crab eggs, from Thailand, are poisonous to humans.

Slightly less unattractive than horseshoe crabs

We didn’t know how to get back to Bangkok, so we found a very fancy hotel and asked for directions. They gave us a not-to-scale map of the town and told us where to go. We could have taken a songtow to the town’s main road, but we felt like walking to see more of the town.

Once near the Chinatown area we found a bus that said “Bangkok” and got on. We were in Bangkok 1.5 hours and several near accidents later.

Not dying = Win!

All Pictures


 

Thailand
(ราชอาณาจักรไทย)
(Ratcha Anachak Thai)

How to get there:

  • You can enter by plane, boat, bus, or train.
  • Most citizens from many countries do not need to get a visa before going to Thailand. But, you will need a visa to stay longer than 1 month or if you been to Thailand for at least 3 months already in the past 12 months.
  • People of most nationalities will get a 30-day visa at the port of entry.
  • To be completely sure, check with the Thai embassy in your country.

Phone:

Website:

Downloads:

Videos:

Notes:

  • Do not say anything negative about the king or anyone in the Royal family. And definitely do not write anything bad about the king or royal family. This offence could land you in jail. You don’t want to go to Thai jail.
  • Don’t use the city ferries in Bangkok during the peak hours. They fill those things past capacity and sometimes they sink. Use them during non-peak hours when they are not crowded.

Bang Saen Beach
(หาดบางแสน)

How to get there:

  • 13°17’36.8″N 100°54’24.4″E

From Bangkok

  • Go to Eastern Bus Terminal,alsoknownasEkamai Bus Terminal.
    • You can find it near the Ekamai BST station (E7).
    • Go out exit 2 and make a u-turn.
    • You’ll see the bus station once you pass the 7-11.
  • The bus ride is takes 1:30 hours and costs 77THB.
  • Bang Saen Beach is not the last stop.
  • Make sure to ask the driver or the ticket lady/man to tell you when your stop is.

Notes:

  • There is no bus terminal in Bang Saen. It’s just a bus stop.
  • To get back to Bangkok you need to go near the Chinatown looking area in this picture.
  • The buses heading to Bangkok stop about a block away from this gate.
  • The buses coming from Bangkok stop across the street from this gate.
  • To get back to Bangkok just look out for a bus with “Bangkok” written on the side, then hop on.
  • There are many buses that pass by, so if one looks too full, just get the next one.
  • You might not want to wait for the next one too late in the day though.
    • I think that all buses stop running through this town around 8:00pm.

Wat Saen Suk
(Buddhist Hell Temple)

How to get there:

  • Once off the bus to Bang Saen Beach, get a songtow or motorbike taxi to Wat Saen Suk.
  • Negotiate a price before getting on the motorbike taxi.
  • Songtows tend to have set prices.

Address:

Wat Saensuk
Bang Saen Sai 2 Soi 19
Saen Suk, Mueang Chon Buri, Chon Buri 20130, Thailand

Cost:

Admission is free.

Notes:

  • Make sure to bring lots water.
  • There is a restaurant near by, but no where to just buy water.

The Beach

How to get there:

  • 13°17’36.8″N 100°54’24.4″E
  • From Wat Saen Suk you can walk to the beach.
  • Head out the gate then walk straight to the main road.
  • Cross the street then head left.
  • Continue until you can turn right.
  • Go straight and you will hit the beach.

Notes:

  • If you need a place to change you can pay 5THB and change at the public bathroom.
  • You can also shower there, but I don’t recommend it.
  • If you do, bring your own soap and towel. But really, unless you’re very dirty, you might want to skip this.
  • The water in the shower is slightly less brown than the water at the beach.
  • The beach at Bang Saen is far from a great beach. In fact if it weren’t so hot, I would have never even put my little toe into the water. But the heat melted away all my beach snobbery.

****WARNING****

Never eat female horseshoe crabs in Thailand. The roe of the horseshoe crab has tetrodotoxin (TTX) which is toxic to humans. It makes people very sick and some people have even died as a result.

Map:

Posted in Bang Saen Beach, Thailand | Tagged: , , | Leave a Comment »

 
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