Unzen (雲仙市 Unzen-shi?) is one of three cities on the Shimabara peninsula. Amalgamated on October 11, 2005, Unzen city was formed from the towns of Minamikushiyama (南串山 Minamikushiyama?), Obama (小浜 Obama?), Chijiwa (千々石 Chijiwa?), Aino (愛野 Aino?), Azuma (吾妻 Azuma?), Mizuho (瑞穂 Mizuho?), and Kunimi (国見 Kunimi?). Unzen comprises the northwestern third of the peninsula, bounded roughly by Tachibana Bay to the west, Ariake Bay to the North, and Unzen-dake (雲仙岳 Unzen-dake?), the volcanic cluster from which it takes its name, to the east. Due to its terrain, composition, and relative newness, Unzen City has no distinct urban center. Instead it is characterized by small townships intermingled with farmland and rugged, often forested, hills. Neighboring cities are Shimabara, Minami-Shimabara, and Isahaya.


In terms of public transportation, Unzen City is served almost exclusively by the "Shimatetsu" (島原鉄道, Shimabaratetsudou) company, which runs the train line for which it is named as well as a number of bus routes. Train service and most bus routes are between central Isahaya and some point on the Shimabara peninsula; current train service goes to Minamishimabara (南島原, Minamishimabara) station.
It should be noted that the Shimatetsu train is supposedly, per unit distance, the slowest and most expensive in all of Japan! It is punctual, though; an ideal that the buses, amazingly, do not always manage to approach.


JET placementsEdit

There are 8 placements in Unzen City, separated into the 2 high school (HS) and 6 junior high (JHS) / elementary school placements. They are defined by base schools as follows:

  1. Kunimi HS
  2. Obama HS
  3. Aino JHS - Chijiwa JHS
  4. Azuma JHS
  5. Obama JHS
  6. Minamigushi JHS
  7. Mizuho JHS
  8. Kunimi JHS

Foreign communityEdit

The Shimabara Block of ALTs is a tight-knit group, and makes up the general population of foreigners within the vicinity.


Places to visitEdit

Unzen City is particularly known for being one of the first hot spring resorts in Japan to cater to foreign crowds. Of particular note is Unzen Jigoku, or the Unzen hells, which is a hot spring park that supplies the water for the surrounding inns.


Be sure to visit Kanou Kaen in March, during which the local community dresses up in samurai gear at night and parades through the town holding torches to celebrate the coming of spring and cherry blossoms. There is also an arquebus demonstration and mock battle with the local elementary schoolchildren.



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External linksEdit

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