Nagasaki Shinchi Chinatown

Alongside Yokohama and Kobe, Nagasaki’s Shinchi-macho district is one of Japan’s three designated Chinatowns. It is also the country’s oldest, dating back from well before the Edo Period.

During Japan’s self-imposed period of national isolation, the port of Nagasaki was the only place open to foreign trade and merchants. Chinese were allowed to live in Nagasaki but segregated to specific ‘Chinese areas’ and isolated from the general public. They were allowed to worship at local temples and despite their isolation transferred many Chinese traditions and influences to the local Nagasaki culture, such as food and festivals.

In 1859, after two centuries, Japan’s period of isolation ended and the Chinese moved to Shinchi, establishing today’s Nagasaki Chinatown. The area is a popular tourist attraction with Chinese-influenced restaurants and souvenir shops.

Every year during the Lunar New Year, the Nagasaki Lantern Festival is held with thousand of lanterns and elaborate displays on show throughout the city. After a long drive from Fukuoka city, we arrived just in time for the last evening of the two-week festival. They were literally taking the displays down, so we were quick to enjoy this beautiful and unique Nagasaki experience.

Location Map

What do you think? Any ideas or suggestions? Let me know.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.