Venturing away from the museum, we rode into town. With Nagasaki sprawling out over the hills surrounding a river mouth, this took a deceptively long time. Existing somewhere between an American style grid system, with a number of European style buildings lining the streets and a few curved main road, it was delightfully dissimilar to the grid based Oita city – presumable this mashup is the result of Portuguese influence in the 16th and 19th Century.
First port of call was to find our lodgings for the night, gratefully provided by Jenni, whom I’d been fortunate enough to meet at Pre-Departure Orientation back in Blighty and whom was away for the weekend and was happy to leave her house to us.
Once settle in, it was off to explore the sites. Heading down to Meganebashi we were to meet tour guide for the weekend Naomi for a personalised tour of Nagasaki.
Meganebashi, or Spectacles Bridge was built by a monk way back in 1634, and is so called due to the reflection of the arches in the water creating the look of spectacles. Sat around eating weird local ice cream flavour, it was a delightful way to catchup up with a Nagasaki friend.
Lead through the meandering streets and alleys of Nagasaki, the European influence on Nagasaki was most evident, and it felt strangely similar to the near European-ness of Nairobi – familiar, yet unquestionably foreign (maybe all the hiragana and kanji perhaps?)
Meeting up with Charlotte, another delightfully British JET, we worked our way up to Glover house, purched upon a hill top overlooking the entirety of the Nagasaki Bay area, which at the sunset hour we were approaching was incredibily beautiful, and the place made more beautiful by the addition of beers in a beautiful garden area.
Dining in Faux French restaurant Garcon Ken (un nom tres francais…) we headed out onto the streets of Nagasaki, weaving between host bars promoters and prostitute to find that Nagasaki appeared to lack somewhat in nightlife, unless you were willing to pay ¥4000 cover on the door of a somewhat questionable club.
Ultimately we settled upon THE WORLD’S SMALLEST BAR. A single room, comprising of a single rom of people standing and perching against the bar, casually shuffling down the row as others left, and providing drinks space for little more than 15 squashed people – though the Umeshu was delicious!