A Travellerspoint blog

Volcanic Wonders and Samurai Legacies

Kagoshima, Japan

View Around the World! - Part 2 on Where2FromHere's travel map.

Today we're visiting Kagoshima, the southernmost area of mainland Japan.


Along with learning about the culture in foreign countries on this trip, Jeff and I are undergoing a geography lesson as well. Both of us commented this morning as we sailed into Japan that we never realized how highly mountainous Japan was. This is due to its location along a number of plate boundaries and within the greater Pacific Ring of Fire, which makes it prone to frequent earthquakes and volcanic activity. In fact, our day began with a ferry trip to the most active volcano in the world, Sakurajima. The volcano was formerly an island, but lava flows from the 1914 eruption connected it with the Ōsumi Peninsula, turning it into a peninsula. It was surprising to see that there are residents living here.


As we trekked along the path encircling the volcano, we were impressed with the remarkable "artistic creations" that resulted from the volcano's numerous eruptions. The landscape was adorned with unique formations, each bearing the distinct imprint of molten lava that had cooled and solidified over time. Additionally, we observed protective structures and helmets that were strategically placed for safety purposes, serving as a stark reminder of the volcano's potential for destructive eruptions.



Then we went to see Sengan-en garden which is one Japan's finest examples of a samurai lord's garden. It is a 17th-century traditional garden positioned alongside the bay with breathtaking views of its surroundings. The garden includes small ponds, streams, shrines and a bamboo grove.


Upon our return to the ship I noticed, once again, that the United States flag was flying right alongside the flag of Japan. We were enthusiastically greeted by the locals. It was nice to feel so welcomed in a foreign country.


Our next port of call is also in Japan. We'll be spending two days in Tokyo following tomorrow's sea day. Until then ....

Posted by Where2FromHere 22:22 Archived in Japan

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STUNNING GARDENS. Quite a relief to this vicarious traveler after your days of high-rise, heavily populated areas. Great reporting!

by Carol Johnston Snow

Love seeing the photos of the samurai lord's garden. Actually your whole trip has been a continuing geography lesson for me!🤗

by Nancy Bain

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