A Bumpy Ride Over to Fukuoka / by Eren Sarigul

The next stop on my trip was a boat trip from Busan to the southern city of Fukuoka in Japan, unfortunately the weather was not on my side. 

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On the morning of the boat trip, a huge storm kicked up over the sea which left me half hoping the boat ride would be suspended. However, the Japanese company operating the route very rarely delay their journeys other than in the most extreme circumstances.

The boat felt like a grandfather clock's pendulum swinging from side to side for the full duration of the journey. During certain times all I could see out of the window was water (and no sky) due to the size of the waves hitting the side of the boat! After two hours of waves, hearing passengers scream and a baseball game - which was broadcast flawlessly throughout - I arrived at Fukuoka. 

Things didn’t get off to the best start, the hotel I stayed in was by far the worst I have stayed in during my time in Japan with its paper thin walls and clouds of cigarette smoke filling up the lobby. To make matters worse I was struck down with an awful throat ache and cold - not that I let it deter me from exploring. I popped into the closest pharmacy and through the power of sign language managed to explain my predicament to the kind lady. 

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Things are not done by half measures in Japan and the medicine had me falling asleep in Starbucks - thankfully its not an uncommon occurrence in Japan.

Once awake I was fighting fit and head straight over to Kego park which is one of the highlights of the city. The beautiful Japanese style park has two large bridges and Islands situated within making it an interesting walk.

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The following morning I hopped onto a train to the port city of Nagasaki. My first point of call was to visit the peace memorial. It was poignant and thought provoking visit, there were many school children in the area in tears while being guided around. The peace museum meanwhile was both hard hitting and very informative.

I boarded the tram over to Mount Inasa to take in the views of Nagasaki from on up high followed by a train ride back to the hotel in Fukuoka.

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This brought an end to my time in Fukuoka and a Shinkansen ride down south to Yakushima awaited.

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