Changes around Nagasaki

Over 7 1/2 years ago was the very first time I came to Japan. I was a study abroad student, and I lived in Nagasaki City. Over the course of the those years, I've come back to visit a few times. Each time I visit, many things have stayed the same. But many other things have changed, too.

Also, I had different cameras in 2006, 2008, and 2014, so you can also see the difference in image quality. ^_^

Nishi Hamanomachi

The main area downtown has changed a little bit. A You-ing used to be on the corner with a connecting walkway for pedestrians. Now that You-ing has moved into the Hamanomachi arcade, and the walkway is completely gone.

September 2006

March 2014


So, You-ing moved inside of Hamanomachi replacing a department store not too long after I finished studying abroad in 2006. Within the last few years, You-ing must've been bought out by Tsutaya. It says has the You-ing label, but the Tsutaya brand is now prominent.

Additionally, just past the 100 shop was a Deo Deo when I lived there in 2006. They must've been bought out, too, or they changed their name to the titular Edeon which are everywhere in Japan.

September 2006

April 2008

March 2014


A few years after I was back in the states, many many arcades began to close in Nagasaki (and across Japan, I'm sure). Many of the major and minor arcades we used to visit on the regular basis were gone on my subsequent visits to Nagasaki. I can't really say why.. Maybe it was because of the global recession, or the continued rise of mobile games in Japan, or just the stagnation of the Japanese video game industry. I dunno..

Within the first block of Hamanomachi there was a Sega arcade, I went to on a frequent basis. This place is pretty easy to identify because it's a fricken pyramid. They had some bitchin' retro games, and fighting games on the second floor. The first floor was full of UFO and Purikura machines.

Anyway, in 2008, it was gone. Come back in 2014, and it's alive again as an indy arcade. :)

September 2006

April 2008

March 2014

Suwa Shrine

Suwa Shrine is the most prominent major shrine is Nagasaki City. During the kunchi festival, the Mikoshi are removed and run around town as a celebration. There are many steps leading up to the shrine, but it's not as tall as it looks.

September 2006

March 2014

September 2006

March 2014

September 2006

April 2008

March 2014

Near Suwa Shrine, there used to be a small zoo with birds, and monkeys. At least, I'm pretty sure there was something like that. I went there after Suwa Shrine, but I didn't find anything at all. It was just an empty park.

Air Raid Shelter

I don't know if this was always there, or if they just recently renovated and opened this up, but through the woods near the Nagasaki Museum of Culture and History, there's an air raid shelter you can visit.

The inside is completely cleaned out, and there really isn't much to see, but it's still an interesting visit. It must've been rather difficult for the residents of those times to be crammed into such a dank and uncommodating structure. Every being inside it, the air is still, and the walls are cold. Rooms are small, and the hallways are narrow. It's very constricting and claustrophobic.

Amu Plaza

Like any visitors or resident of Nagasaki City, the first structure you enter in the city from the train is Amu Plaza. It's directly connected to the station, and shares the same canopy protecting everyone from the rain and sunlight.

Over the last 7 1/2 years, it hasn't really changed at all. The station is still the exact same. Some stores inside Amu Plaza have changed, but the shopping still has the exact same layout, so all the stores are basically the same.

September 2006

Here's the tram stop in front of Amu Plaza. I think this is the only photo I have of the area from that time.

March 2014

Here's the same area from the other side.

Other Changes

There's been plenty of other changes I don't really have any photos of. Our beloved Taito Station in Sumiyoshi is no longer in operation. I think that went out of business before I visited in 2008. The McDonalds is still totally there, though, which is weird. The whole building hasn't changed in the last 7 1/2 years, so the top 3 floors must've been vacant all this time.

Something new we saw in 2010 was Coco Walk: a massive new American style mall near Urakami station that also serves as a bus station. I have no recollection of what was there before this mall, but it is now a staple of the landscape. You can clearly see it from Mt. Inasa, too.

Something else that has changed recently is that Toys R Us in Michinoo is now out of business.

So, several things have changed throughout the years, but many things have not. I remember Nagasaki so well, that I never really pulled out Google Maps to figure out where I was going. Even using the busses, I remember the areas, and can read the Kanji on the bus stop, that I could figure out what bus to take easily. I totally remember my bus stop (the bus stop in near Beardo) being 寺川内.

The Future

There are plenty more changes coming in the future. Signs near Amu Plaza show Nagasaki City's intention for completely renovating Nagasaki Station. The train tracks between the station and Urakami station will be completely elevated to elevate traffic and move the actual station away from Amu Plaza. And then it looks like they plan on building another line going out of the station.

Interesting times ahead. I definitely plan on coming back in the near future rather than waiting so long. ^_^

The Past

Here are several posts and photos I've taken from my previous times in Nagaski:

September 14th, 2006: Day One, Nagasaki
September 15th, 2006: Downtown Nagasaki
September 17th, 2006: The Nagasaki Tour
September 17th, 2006: Typhoon ShanShan
September 19th, 2006: Mt. Inasa
September 26th, 2006: Nagasaki Temples

April 7th, 2008: Mt. Inasa and Goshi Temple
April 8th, 2008: Around Nagasaki
April 12th, 2008: The rest of the trip


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