A few favourite haikyo from 2010

Pretty much every abandoned building I’ve been to has had its fair share of memories and mysteries, but some, without a doubt, are more interesting than others; so here, following on from the year’s photo round-up, are my favourite haikyo from the past 12 months — each paragraph of which contains a link to the original post and the full set of pictures.

Topping the list is definitely the enka singer’s house, as not only had it never (at least to my knowledge) been explored before, but it also offered up enough clues and personal details to piece together at least some parts of the life of the singer who once lived there.

house haikyo

house haikyo

After that it’s a tough choice, but probably the old pachinko parlor would sneak in second; not necessarily for any particular details that were left lying about, but because I’d always been on the look-out for such a place. And, to find one so intact as well as incredibly peaceful, was a real treat.

pachinko parlor haikyo

pachinko parlor haikyo

Next is Nichitsu mining town, the only haikyo I’ve ever returned to, as my first trip there was curtailed somewhat by fading light and a security patrol, meaning I never got to fully explore the quiet and memory filled old school. A place that turned out to be surprisingly pleasant in the daylight, and definitely made the return visit worthwhile.

Nichitsu school

Plus, going back also meant there was the chance for one last look at the now even more decayed doctor’s office.

Nichitsu mining town

For something very different, and at the same time utterly disgusting, the Japan Snake Center certainly deserves to be on the list; a set of photos that, even now, still remind me of the hideous smell of hundreds, possibly even thousands, of rotting snakes.

abandoned Japanese snake centre

abandoned Japanese snake centre

And finally, the Higashi Izu-cho Isolation Ward must get a mention. A silent, very sombre place, steadily decaying in a dark and damp bamboo forrest. One that, considering that the majority (if not all) of those who went there, did so to die, makes it by far the saddest haikyo I’ve ever visited.

Abandoned Japanese isolation ward

Abandoned Japanese isolation ward

A few favourite photos from 2010

Over the past 12 months I’ve taken more than a few photos, some of which I like as they bring back memories, acting as a visual diary of sorts, and others quite simply because of the moments they capture.

So here, as a bit of an end of year round-up, are a few of my personal favourites, with a click on any picture taking you to the original post. And, as an added bonus, there’s also a bit of music to go with them, made by a friend who was with me when a fair number of the photos were taken.


Shibuya kiss

Shibuya fashion

old Japanese lady

Kawagoe festival

eccentric Japanese shopkeeper

Yoyogi park musician

Kunitachi festival

Japanese street food

Omotesando in the sun

Japanese painter

Japanese rapeseed

Japanese cherry blossom

Japanese pet pushchair

memory lane/piss alley