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Nagasaki / UNESCO Hidden Christian sites 6 days tour

Introduce how Christians have been continued their faith since Christianity

was propagated to Japan by visiting Nagasaki-city, Unzen, Shimabara, Amakusa

and Hirado for the Hidden Christian sites and related sites.

 

Japanese Christianity has a long history of continuing faith while coexisting with

Japanese traditional religion Shinto and General society. Japan’s unique practice

of the Christian faith continued even during the ban on Christianity. Hidden Christian

Sites in Nagasaki Regions bear unique testimony to the tradition of people and their

communities who secretly transmitted their faith in Christianity while surviving in the

midst of the conventional society and its religions during the time of prohibition.

 

Where to visit

Nagasaki-city, Shimabara,  Unzen , Amakusa and Hirado.

 


 

Location of Hidden Christian sites in Nagasaki region

 

  

 

 


 

Tour conditions

 

The tour is the private tour exclusively for your group.

・Minimum number : 2 person

・Maxum number : 30 person

・Start and end of the tour is Fukuoka-city, please specify the place where you want

・Tour date : please specify the date

・Accommodations is selected as per your required grade, room conditions and budget

    and the location is considered sightseeing, dinner and nightlife as well.

・English speaking tour attendant escorts your journey to produce a pleasant trip.

・Chartered vehicle is utilized as per number of person.

 


 

Where to visit  

 

Day 1   Sotome & Nagasaki

 

Itinerary

 

Depart  Fukuoka-city

transfer to Nagasaki-city

Visit Sotome area

Lunch at Nagasaki Wharf

Exploring Nagasaki

 Martyrdom of 26 Saints of JapanOura Cathedral

 Glover Garden → Mount Inasa

Stay in  Nagasaki–city

 


 

Where to explore

 

Sotome area Hidden Christian Site / UNESCO World Heritage

When he discovered the underground Christians, Petitjean realized that there were

many other Christians hiding in the Sotome region. He appointed de Rotz as the

parish priest of the Shitsu and Kurosaki districts.    

 

 

  Shitsu Church

 

  Former Shitsu Aid Centre

 

The Statue of Mary


 

Lunch at Nagasaki Wharf

Elegant international & domestic tourist harbour. Made up of around 20 unique shops and

restaurants lined up at the water front, offering various choices such Japanese, Western,

and Italian cuisine, to beauty salons, outdoor shops and more.

 

 

Martyrdom of the 26 Saints of Japan

Nishizaka Hill in Nagasaki is the place of Martyrdom of 26 Japanese Saints.

The Twenty-Six Martyrs of Japan were a group of Catholics who were executed by
crucifixion on February 5, 1597.Their martyrdom is especially significant in the history
of the Catholic Church in Japan.
In 1950, Pope Pius XII designated this place as an official pilgrimage site for Catholics.
And Saint Teresa of Calcutta commonly known as Mother Teresa visited here in 1982.
 

 

Nishizaka hill, the site of

Martyrdom in 1597

 

The martyrs said that 

” All people, bless God ! ”  

 

The 26 Japanese martyrs have 

been canonized in 1862


 

Oura Cathedral   / UNESCO World Heritage

Basilica of Martyrdom of the 26 Saints of Japan. Built in 1865 under the supervision

of the French priest Bernard Petitjean. It was designated as a National Treasure in

1933 for its value as Japan’s oldest Gothic-style Cathedral.

 

 

Entrance gate of Oura

Cathedral

 

Japan’s oldest Gothic-style

Cathedral building

 

Statue of Mary, at entrance of

Cathedral, installed in 1867


 

Glover Garden   / UNESCO World Heritage

The garden takes its name from Thomas Glover, his arms-importing operations played 
an important part in the Meiji Restoration, he built the first train line in Japan and he even

helped establish the first modern Mitsubishi ship yard.

 

 

Tomas Glover Residence,

World Heritage

 

Former Mitsubishi second

dock house

 

Overlooking of Nagasaki

harbour


 

Mount Inasa

It is a 333 meter high mountain in close distance to JR Nagasaki Station. The summit can

be reached by ropeway or car and offers great views over the city. And also, the magnificent

night views from Mount Inasa are ranked among Japan’s three best night views.

 

 

Veiw from Nagasaki harbor

 

View from the Summit 

  

 

World’s three great night veiw 


 

Day 2  Nagasaki & Unzen
 
Itinerary
Exploring Nagasaki

Lunch at China Town

Transfer to Unzen

Visit Nita Pass→ Unzen Jigoku

Stay at Unzen

 

Option : the following site can be arranged as a option

The Japan’s longest foot bath in Obama

 


 

Where to explore

 

Established in 1955 near the Ground Zero where the Atomic Bomb was dropped 

at 11:02 am on Aug. 09, 1945.

Peace Memorial Ceremony is held in front of the statue on August 9 every year and

the Mayor of Nagasaki makes the “Nagasaki peace declaration” for the whole world.

 

Peace Statue

 

 

Completed in 1955, ten years

after the atomic bombing

Peace Fountain

 

 

Reminds the tragic scene

unfolded shortly after the

dropped Atomic Bomb

Ground Zero

 

 

The Atomic bomb exploded

about 500m over the central 

monument               


 

Lunch at China Town

Nagasaki China town at shinchi is one of the big three china town in Japan.

There are about 50 Chinese restaurants and many Chinese sundries shops in there.

 

 


 

Unzen, Nita Pass

Unzen is a beautiful mountain and Onsen resortand was the first area to be designated as   

a National Park in Japan. At any time of the year the natural scenery of Nita-toge Pass in Unzen

is magnificent. Azaleas, green leaves, brilliant autumnal tints of maples and silver frost

represent each season of the year.

 

 

   Entrance to Nita pass

 

      Nita pass Observetory

 

  Rope way to Myoken mountain


 

Means Hell, is the number one attraction of Unzen with a peculiar smell of sulfur emitted

from the springs, and with white smoke rising from the ground over a wide area.

Unfortunately, this was once put into reality nearly 350 years ago during the time of 

religious persecution in Japan.  30 Japanese Christians, failing to renounce their faith

met their death here in the scalding spring of Jigoku.

 

 

Smoke rising from the ground

over a wide area

 

Martyrdom site of Christians

 

The Cross written the name of

six martyrs


 

Option

 

The Japan’s longest foot bath in Obama

Called “Hot foot 105  The length of foot bath is 105m which is same number of the hot spring

source temperature of 105 degree Celsius.

 

 

“ Hot foot 105 ” is the Japan’s

longest foot bath, 105 meter 

 

Hot spring source temperature

of 105 degree Celsius

 

Obama Onsen Resort, located

at the mountain foot of  Unzen 


 

Day 3   Shimabara

 

Itinerary

Exploring Shimabara

  Shimabara Castle   → Samurai Houses & Samurai street

Lunch at Shimabara, local delicacy food, Guzoni

Transfer to Minami Shimabara

Harajo Castle ruins ;  Battle field of Shimabara Rebellion

Transfer to Amakusa from Kuchinotsu

Stay in Amakusa

 


 

Where to explore

 

Shimabara Castle

The castle was built in 1625 by the feudal load Matsukura Shigemasa, who was regarded as

a master of Castle building. The castle, which took 7 years to complete, is also known as 

“Moritake Castle”.  It was an almost rectangular flatland castle built in the Renkaku-style.

 

 

Donjon of Shimabara Castle

 

Moat of the Castle planted lotus

 

Great stone wall of moat


 

Samurai Houses & Samurai street

Samurai was a term for the military nobility in pre-industrial Japan.

The Samurai houses in Shimabara along the old Samurai street nearby Shimabara Castle

were built in 18th century.

 

 

Samurai street

 

Samurai house

 

Japanese garden


 

Lunch at Shimabara, local delicacy food, Guzoni

Guzoni are said to date back to the Shimabara Rebellion of 1637 when the leader of the

uprising, Amakusa Shiro Tokisada, held a siege in Hara Castle with about 37,000 followers.
He made the local farmers provide the rebels with rice cake. The rebels gathered other

ingredients from the ocean and the mountains to put in the soup they cooked the rice cake

in, and thus were able to fight for three months sustained by nutritious food.

 


 

Harajo Castle ruins

The Battle field of Shimabara Rebellion which was a peasant uprising agaist bakufu’s

persecution of Christians under the leadership of Amakusa Shiro in 1637.  Christian farmers

rose in a riot due to their grievance about the oppression by Matsukura Shigemasa. The

Shogunate regarded this riot as Christian rebellion and sent its punitive force, therefore locked

themselves in the castle and with their leader Amakusa Shiro Tokisada fought against the

Shogunate. On February 27, 1638, he died in battle.

The following day, the castle fell. 37,000 Christians including women and children died a

violent death. 

 

 

Entrance to Harajo Castle

Ruins

 

Battle field of Shimabara

Rebellion

 

The Statue of Amakusa Shiro


 

Transfer to Amakusa (Oniike) , from Kuchinotsu (Minami-Shimabara-city)

Shimatetsu Ferry : operated by Shinabara Rail Way, 30 minutes ride.

 

    Kuchinotsu port

      Kuchinotsu

        To Amakusa


 

Day 4  Amakusa & Kumamoto  

 

Itinerary

 

8:00 Depart Hotel 

Visiting Hidden Christian sites

  Oe Cathedral →  Sakitsu Village  →  Amakusa Shiro Memorial Hall

Travel Amakusa Gokyo / Pearl line

Transfer to Kumamoto

Exploring Kumamoto 

  Sakurano-baba Josaien Kumamoto Castle  

Stay in Kumamoto

 


 

Where to explore

 

Oe Cathedral 

The oldest Catholic Church in Amakusa and was one of the first churches built right after the

ban on Christianity was lifted. The Romanesque-style architecture and the chalky white

structure was rebuilt in 1933 by a French missionary priest named Father Garnier using his

own money and contributions from local Christians living in the area.

 

 

The oldest Catholic Church

in Amakusa

 

Romanesque-style

architecture

 

 Oe Village


 

Sakitsu Village  / UNESCO World Heritage

A Gothic-looking church is located on a cove of a fishing village. In 1934, a French priest

Augustin Halbout MEP purchased the premises of the former village headman and built a

wooden and concrete finished church, with Tetsukawa Yosuke’s design and construction.

He placed the altar at the very site where fumie or a test to ensure non-allegiance to

Christianity had been conducted.

 

 

A Gothic-looking church

 

 Sakitsu Village

 

 Fishery port


 

Amakusa Shiro Memorial Hall

The theme Museum shows History of Christianity in Amakusa and Shimabara Rebellion in

Harajo Castle Ruins which was a peasant uprising agaist bakufu’s persecution of Christians

under the leadership of Amakusa Shiro in 1637.

 

 

 Amakusa Shiro Memorial Hall

 

 Bell for Love

 

 Amakusa Shiro Statue


 

Sakurano-baba Josaien         

Josaien is located in Sakurano-baba, at the foot of Kumamoto Castle, one of Japan’s three

major castles. It is a popular tourist attraction designed to enhance the appeal of the old castle

town and convey to visitors the food, history and cultural traditions of the region from Kumamoto

Castle, a symbol of the Kumamoto-city.

 

 

The main gate located in

Sakurano-baba

 

 Many shops sell Kumamoto

 souvenirs

 

 Restaurants, to enjoy distinctive

 food culture in Kumamoto

 


 

Kumamoto Castle

The Castle is one of the three great castles and one of the 100 best places in Japan to

view cherry blossoms. Due to the Earthquakes in 2016, several of the castle’s shacihoko 

ornaments were destroyed, and a large number of kawara tiles also fell from the roof.

Now the restoration activities are being performed as fast as possible. Now, the Kumamoto

Castle can be seen from the outside of the moats surrounding the castle.

 

 

  Castle tower

 

 Castle tower after Earthquake 

 

   Turret


 

Day 5  Hirado

 

Itinerary

 

Depart Kumamoto

Transfer to Hirado

Visit Tabira Church

Lunch at Hirado, local delicacy sea food

Exploring Hirado

  Matsura Historical Museum →  St Francis Xavier Memorial Church →  Dutch Trading Post

Stay at Hirado

 


 

Tabira Church

The church was designed by Tetsukawa Yosuke, a famous architect of various churches

in Nagasaki-prefecture, and built between December 1915 and October 1917. It is one

of the latest brick churches in the prefecture of Nagasaki. Tetsukawa Yosuke has called

this one of his best works.

 

 

  The Church building facing

  Hirado strait

 

  The latest brick churche in 

  Nagasaki-prefecture

 

 Mary statue in front of

 the Church


 

Lunch at Hirado

local delicacy sea food

 

 

Matsura Historical Museum

The museum stores and displays the historical collection of the Matsura family who ruled

over the northern area of Nagasaki prefecture since the 13th century. The museum is

housed in the former private residence of the Matsura family, the grand Tsurugamine

Mansion, built in 1893. Hirado has a long history of overseas exchange due to its

geographical location.

 

 

  History Museum buiding

  used Matsura family

 

  Displays the historical

  collections

 

 Military helmet


 

St Francis Xavier Memorial Church

This church is a catholic church in Hirado, Nagasaki. Hirado is a place where Francis

Xavier visited 3 times in Japan to spread Christianity, and even during the Kinkyo

Ordinance of the Edo Period that prohibited religions, Christianity was very widespread.

For that reason when the ordinance was lifted this church was constructed, and the image

of Francis Xavier was put on the side.

 

 

 Francis Xavier visited here

 

  Catholic church in Hirado

 

  Francis Xavier statue


 

Dutch Trading Post

Set up in Hirado in 1609 as the base of operations of the Dutch East India Company

in Japan. The building seen today is a warehouse which was originally constructed

here in 1639 as part of the trading post, but torn down just three years later after the

Dutch had been relocated to Dejima Island in the port of Nagasaki.

 

 

 Hirado wan opened to foreign

 country before Nagasaki

 

 Warehouse of Dutch East

 India Company

 

  Hirado Dutch ship


 

Day 6  Hirado

 

Itinerary

 

Depart Hotel

Exploring Hirado

 Hirado Castle   → Nakae no Shima  → Kasuga Village

Transfer to Fukuoka

Arrive at Hotel in Fukuoka

 


 

Hirado Castle

Stands on a hill guarding Hirado Port and the Hirado Strait, which used to be part of an important

trade route between Japan and the Asian mainland. The original fortress was built in 1599 by the

local Matsura Lord; however, he destroyed the structure after fighting the Tokugawa on the losing

side of the Battle of Sekigahara as a gesture of loyalty to the victor. The Matsura Clan continued

ruling Hirado for the next two and a half centuries.

 

 

  Stands on a hill guarding

  Hirado Port

 

  Castle tower for Matsura

  Clan

 

 Exhibit historical items


 

Nakae no Shima / UNESCO World Heritage

Located two kilometers off the coast of Hirado Island, Nakae no Shima is a small, uninhabited island

where religious leaders were executed during the persecution of Christians. The island is considered

sacred, and water collected there is used for baptism.

 

 

 Hitado bridge

 

 Nakae no Shima,  

uninhabited island

 

  Hirado Strait


 

Kasuga Village / UNESCO World Heritage

This idyllic, remote village was refuge to a small community of Hidden Christians who practiced here

for centuries, far from the prying eyes of the government. After the ban on Christianity was lifted, the

local villagers decided to continue practicing their own unique brand of the religion rather than rejoin

the Catholic Church. As a result, churches were not erected in the village, and the religion remains

outwardly invisible.

 

 

 Fishery port

 

  Remote village

 

  Small community of Hidden

  Christians

 


 

Contact us

Should you need further information please feel free to contact us.

Your equiry can be sent by selecting the Enquiry Form link below.

Enquiry Form

You can also contact us by e-mail at info@japan-kyushu-tourist.com

Tel :  +81-93-521-8897, Fax :  +81-93-521-8898

Address :  AIM buiding 6th floor, 3-8-1 Asano, Kokura-kitaku, Kitakyushu-city, Fukuoka-prefecture 

 


 

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