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Hidden Christian History tour

 

Congratulations on UNESCO’s World Heritage Site registration

Japan’s unique practice of the Christian faith continued even during the ban on Christianity

 

Hidden Christian Site 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.

This tour introduce the history of Hidden Christian in Nagasaki Region while taking the World Heritages

and related sites of Nagasaki-city, Shimabara and Unzen.

 


 

Tour condition

・Start and end place of the tour : Fukuoka-city

・Places to be visited : Nagasakicity, Shimabara and Unzen

・Duration : 2 nights and 3 days

・Transportation : Chartered vehicle

・English speaking guide

 


 

Itinerary

Day 1

Depart Fukuoka-city and transfer to Nasgasaki-city

Sotome area → Martyrdom of 26 Saints of JapanOura Cathedral → Glover Garden → Mt. Inasa

Stay at Nagasaki

 

Day 2

Peace Park → Ground Zero  → Urakami Cathedral

Transfer to Unzen

Nita Pass → Unzen Jigoku

Stay at Unzen

 

Day 3

Transfer to Minami Shimabara

Harajo Castle ruins ;  Battle field of Shimabara Rebellion

Shimabara Castle

Transfer to Fukuoka-city

Arriva at Fuuoka-city

 


 

Where to visit

Day 1

 

Sotome area

The mission base of de Rotz, who dedicated himself to assisting the needy

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

Christians hiding in the Sotome region.


 

Martyrdom of the 26 Saints of Japan

On February 5, 1597, Paulo Miki and 25 others were crucified for their belief in God on order of Toyotomi Hideyoshi. The martyrs including four Spaniards, one from Goa, India, one Mexican and 20 Japanese

demonstrated their spiritual unity despite differences in races, ages and professions.

By putting them to death, Hideyoshi threatened people, saying “I hereby ban Christianity”. 
Responded the martyrs’ chant “All people, bless God! ”  Death and life, liberty and persecution
and Dictators and the people confronted on Nishizaka Hill. 

 

Oura Cathedral

It was built in 1865 under the supervision of the French priest Bernard Petitjean.

On March 17, 1865, a group of peasants from Urakami came to the church and professed their faith to

Father Petitjean, thus revealing that Christianity had survived through the centuries of persecution.

The white marble statue of the Holy Mother at the entrance was built in commemoration of

the dramatic discovery of the “Hidden Christians.


 

Glover Garden

One of Nagasaki’s popular tourist attractions. The garden takes its name from Thomas Glover
(1838 to 1911), 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.


 

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.


 
Day 2
 

The Park was established in 1955 near the Ground Zero where the Atomic Bomb was dropped 

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

Part of the concrete wall of the Nagasaki prison, which was located here prior to the bombing,

can still be seen.  At the park’s north end is the 10-metre-tall Peace Statue


 

Disastrous War must not be repeated.  The plutonium atomic bomb exploded about 500m over the central monument at 11:02 a.m. on August 9, 1945.
The most part of Nagasaki was destroyed, and a tremendous number of lives were lost.  

And about 70,000 of Nagasaki’s 240,000 residents died instantly, and up to 60,000 were injured.


 

Unzen, Nita Pass

Unzen is a beautiful mountain and Onsen resort, and 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.


 

Jigoku, 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.


 

Day 3

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. 


 

Shimabara Castle

The castle was built in 1625 by the feudal load Matsukura Shigemasawho 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.


 

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.

 


 

Featured tours related to Nagasaki-city, Unzen and Shimabara

11 days Kyushu tour

8 days Northern Kyushu tour

6 days North-West Kyushu tour

Hidden Christian History tour

Nagasaki one-day tour

 


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