Posts Tagged ‘ueno park’

Sakura 2009

Taken at Ueno park last weekend~ Full bloom 😀



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Today is Coming-of-Age Day (成人の日) in Japan. Coming-of-Age Day is a public holiday that is held annually on the 2nd monday in January. It is to celebrate passage to adulthood for those who turn 20years old this year.

More information can be found here : http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Seijin_shiki

And since its a holiday, I decided to visit Ueno Park(上野公園) today.

Ueno Park is a spacious public park located in the Ueno section of Taito-ku, Tokyo, Japan. It occupies the site of the former Kan’eiji, a temple closely associated with the Tokugawa shoguns, who had built the temple to guard Edo Castle against the northeast. The temple was destroyed during the Boshin War.

Ueno Park was established through an imperial land grant to the city of Tokyo by Emperor Taishō in 1924. The official name of the park is Ueno Onshi Kōen (上野恩賜公園, Ueno Onshi Kōen), which can be translated as “Ueno Imperial Gift Park”.

It is a popular park for viewing Cherry blossom that bloom around end March.

The famous statue of Saigō Takamori walking his dog stands in this park.

Statue of Prince Komatsu No Miya Akihito

Kiyomizu Kannon Do (清水観音堂)- Model after Kiyomizu Dera of Kyoto

Around the park

Towards Toshogu Shrine (東照宮) – a shrine dedicated to Tokugawa Ieyasu, the founder of the Edo shogunate, which ruled Japan from 1603 to 1867.

National heritage.. no smoking allowed inside

The Flame of Hiroshima and Nagasaki
The origin:

On August 6, 1945, US forces dropped the world’s first atomic bomb on Hiroshima, and another on Nagasaki on August 9 the same year, claiming the lives of hundreds of thousands of people in an instant. Even now, many survivors are still suffering from the damage.

Sometime later, Tatsuo Yamamoto went to Hiroshima in search of his uncle, and found a flame of the atomic bomb burning in the ruins of his uncle’s house. He brought it back to Hoshino-mura, his hometown in Fukuoka prefecture. He kept it burning in his house as a memento of his uncle and an expression of his resentment. But years went by, the meaning of the lfame turned into a symbol of his desire for abolition of nuclear weapons amd for peace. Hoshino-mura village built a torch and transferred the flame to it on August 6, 1968. It has been keeping the flame ever since as the flame for peace, with the support of the villagers.

“The use of nuclear weapons will destroy the whole human race and civilization… The elimination of nuclear weapons… has become the most urgent and crucial for the very survival of the whole of humanity.

There must never be another Hiroshima anywhere on earth.
There must never be another Nagasaki anywher on earth.”
(From the “Appeal from Hiroshima and Nagasaki” issued in February 1985)

In 1988, a flame was taken from the torch and was merged with another flame lit by the friction of broken roofing tiles of Nagasaki. Along with 30 million signatures collected in support of the “Appeal from Hiroshima and Nagasaki”, it was carreid to the third Special Session of the UN General Assembly for Disarmament taking place in New York City.

In April the same year, members of “Shitamachi People Association” put forward an idea of lighting the flame at the precinct of Ueno Toshogu Shrine in Tokyo. Rev. Shozen Saga, the chief priest, warmly welcomed the proposal, and promised to set up a monument and work together to keep the flame burning.

In April 1989, an “Association for the Flame of Hiroshima and Nagasaki Lit at the Ueno Toshogu” was founded with the people of wide ranging people. (sic) Tens of thousands of people took part in the fund-raising for over one year and the construction of the monument was ocmpleted on July 21, 1990/

In commemoration of the 45th year of the A-bomb tragedies, a flame of Hiroshima was taken from Hoshino-mura and lit at the monument on August 6, and a flame of Nagasaki, generated by the friction of Nagasaki roofing tiles, was also added to the monument.

We hereby pledge to keep burning the A-bomb flame, convinced that this monument should contribute to strengthening the worldwide people’s movement to abolish nuclear weapons and achieve peace, which is the most urgent task for the people across the borders.

August 1990
Association for the Flame of Hiroshima and Nagasaki Lit at the Ueno Toshogu

This is the max you can get to see from outside.. Need to pay 200yen to enter the shrine itself.

Outside the Science museum

Also located near Ueno is Ameya Yokocho or Ameyoko.

Ameyoko is a busy market street along the Yamanote line tracks between Okachimachi and Ueno Station, the site of a black market after World War Two. The name “Ameyoko” is a short form for “Ameya Yokocho” (candy store alley), as candies were traditionally sold there. Alternatively, “Ame” also stands for “America”, because a lot of American products were available on the black market.

Stay tune for part 2 – Ueno Zoo 🙂

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