For Strangers

Are not you accustomed ..word "Geopark".. to hear it? In this page, we will answer the doubt that coils round Geopark.

1. What is the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark?

A. The Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark covers the entire area of the Shimabara peninsula in Nagasaki prefecture. There are three cities in this geopark; Shimabara, Unzen, and Minami Shimabara-city. About 150,000 people live in the geopark.

 

2.What are the special features of Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark ?

A. One of the great features of Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark is the active volcano! A geopark which boasts an active volcano is very unique worldwide.
However, the attraction here is not only the active volcano. People living in the Shimabara Peninsula area have coped repeatedly with volcanic eruptions of Mt. Unzen, and overcome serious volcanic disasters i.e, pyrolclastic flows, debris flows, tsunamis, and so on. Furthermore, people have made the best use of the blessings from the Unzen volcano, and created their own original history and culture. Rich in spring water, hot springs, and fertile soil; these are some typical examples of nature’s blessings. People coexisting with an active volcano is something which cannot be found in any other geopark and this is a great feature of the Unzen Volcanic Area Geopark.

Each geopark throughout  the world has its own individual attraction and places of interest .Why don’t you look into other geoparks which exist in the world?

 

3.Where is the most outstanding feature of the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark?

A.The main singnificant geosites are as follows: the newest mountain of Heisei Shinzan with its lava dome, the cliff of Mayuyama created by a volacanic landslide, beautiful scenery created by ground movements of the Chijiwa fault and so on. Harajo and Shimabara castles are examples of historical geosites. Furtheremore, Obama, Unzen, and Shimabara hot springs are also examples of geosites rich in natural blessings. See the page of ”Main geosites” for detailed information.

 

4.What kind of events are held in the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark?

A. A lot of scientific excursions and natural observation programs have been held at the facilities in the Unzen Volcanic Area Geopark. Since specialists and/or guide staff who have expert knowledge about geology conduct geotures introducing the features of our geopark. One particular geotour, for mainly observing the scenery and stratum, is very popular. Other programs include stargazing, hand-on experience of harvesting farm products (with test eating) and making local special products by hand. See “Events” for detailed information.

 

5.Does it cost money to enter the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark?

A. There are some facilities in Unzen Volanic Area Global Geopark which one must pay to enter, but admission to the Geopark is free.

 

6.How do I get to the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark?

A. You can access the Unzen Volcanic Area by public transport such as train, bus or ship. If you can come by rental car, you can are access the Unzen Volcanic Area either by  highway or car ferry. See “Access” detailed information.

 

7. Where should I start in the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark ?

A. Even first-tme visitors may not be sure where to start. Therefore, we recommend that first you go to the existing facilities and get some information about Unzen volcano and its history, disaster, geological features and so on, then continuing on to geosites in our geopark.
Please come to the Mt. Unzen Disaster Memorial Hall. An information space on Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark has been established in the free zone of the hall. Posters and DVD movies of the most outstanding features of our Geopark are shown in this information space. Visitors also can obtain pamphlets in English, Chinese, Korean, and Japanese.
The Unzen Volcanic Area Geopark promotion office is situated the next to the information space. When you contact the office, we will give you details and the latest information about geosites, sightseeing, culture, history, and local foods of the Shimabara peninsula. Please contact us!

 

8.Are there any books written about the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark, pamphlets or the guidebooks on how to enjoy the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark ? Where can i find them?

A. Sightseeing pamphlets about the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark, Shimabara peninsula, Shimabara, Unzen, and Minamishimabara cities are available in Shimabara Gaiko port, and the sightseeing associations and the city office of each city. You can download the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark pamphlets, from our website – About Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark.

 

9.I want to go to stay overnight at the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark. Are there any recommended  accommodations?

A. The most famous sightseeing spot in Unzen Volcanic Area Geopark is the hot spring. There are three volcanic hot springs in Shimabara Peninsula, Obama, Unzen, and Shimabara hot springs, Each is unique in that the hot spring quality is different respectively. There is a lot of accommodation in the places where these hot springs spring gush out.
Apart from the three hot springs above, Unzen Volcanic Area Geopark also has the Hara Castle, Futsu, and Mizuho hot springs which are of a different, non-volcanic type. They each have communal baths and spa facilities attached. You may be interested in visiting them.

 

10.I want to buy a souvenir of the Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark. Where are there Unzen Volcanic Area Global Geopark original goods and souvenirs? Where I can find them?

A. Some original goods of the Unzen Volcanic Area Geopark have been designed e.g., polo shirts, pin badges, mobile phone charms, ball point pens, and so on. All goods have an original logo mark and/or the original character “GEO-kun”.You can buy them in the museum shop at the Mt. Unzen Disaster Memorial hall. Of course, you can find another souvenir. “The Unzen lava roast coffee” is made from coffee beans roasted with lava blocks from Mt. Unzen eruptions.
The Rokube sponge cake, made from powdered sweet potato, is an original product that local high school students and a local company developed jointly. Another souvenir, “Jyagachan”, which uses the special local potatoes of the local special product abundantly, is also recommended.