Saturday, October 13, 2007

Noboribetsu's Hell Valley

SEPTEMBER 15 - Part 3
Noboribetsu is Hokkaido's most famous hot spring resort, beautifully surrounded by forested hills. Noboribetsu's major attraction besides its baths is the 地獄谷 (Jigokudani) or Hell Valley.
As the place is just a 5-minute walk from the bear park, we went there first before heading back to Tomakomai.
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It wasn't what you will see in Jigokudani. That was just a statue I came across along the way. I supposed these are the Lords which is responsible to all the living (or should I say dead) beings in the Hell.
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I tried looking up the meaning of the 3 characters from my dictionary and it says that 閻魔堂 (Enmadou) means the great King of the Buddhist Hades. Can someone with some Chinese education background clear me on this?
Well, I guess they put up the statue there to protect visitors from these creatures.

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Eventually, we reached the valley.
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Jigokudani is a spectacular, appropriately named valley, which displays hot steam vents, sulfurous streams and other volcanic activities.

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It is one source of Noboribetsu's hot spring waters.

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Here, you can view and smell sulfurous steam vents, streams and ponds.

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sulfurous stream

There was a walking wooden bridge around the valley.

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Walking straight down towards the end will bring you to a signboard.
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It is the 鉄泉池 (Tessen Pond). Eventhough it was raining when we were there, the water in the pond was still boiling.
I know if I were to throw an egg into the pond, it will cook in a couple of minutes.
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But I will never want it to happen to my eggs.
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In some parts of the valley, you might be mistaken it for some outer space planet, based on its surroundings which look like craters and smoke being emitted from the land. On our way back, I noticed some stones which resembles a bird.
See if you can spot it.
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Later, it was the heads of three horses on the mountains. I am not a Feng Shui fanatic, but does that bring any meaning?
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Perhaps it was because we were in the Hell Valley as we continued spotting weird formations everywhere. I guess we have been imagining to much already that time. The third and final one is the most interesting of all.
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It didn't just resembles a face. In fact, it looks like a whole body.

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Not wanting to come across another one, we immediately headed back. While waiting for train at Noboribetsu station, the was a comment book placed there. We flipped through it and comments came in various languages from all parts of the world.
We couldn't find any Malaysian leaving a comment in the book. So, Jonathan was given the honour to write some comments there. As for me, I drew a picture depicting two bears from our visit to the bear park.
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I have left my comments drawings there. So now, it's your turn to leave a comment here.

6 comments:

michelleg said...

cool place. isn't that sulphur smell kinda intoxicating?

btw, by taking that hot steaming pond pic, do u think it might have affected the lense of ur camera? hmm..

lasilasi said...

nice drawings =p

so u've been to 'hell''s valley and seen yan luo wang (i think he should be the one staying in 閻魔堂)!

calvin said...

@ michelleg:
yea, those sulfur have some smell.

i took the photo and the video as quickly as possible. it was less than a minute. so, i guess it won't be a problem to my camera.

calvin said...

@ lasilasi:
thanks =D

is that mandarin or cantonese? what i heard before is 'giam low ong'. i guess my version is a hokkien one.

KOKahKOK said...

where are the 3 horses!!!?? i cant see it haha.....

calvin said...

@ kokahkok:
those three horses are just in the middle of the picture. if you can't see it, means you will have 10 minutes of bad luck from this moment! hehe =P