Category Archives: Japan


Although the “Amsterdam” has called at this port before, it is the first time for me.  In fact, the last time I was in any Japanese port was when I was on a bulk-carrier, loaded with iron ore, that was when I was a young 2nd Officer, O happy day.  🙂  

It’s time for a time-lapse of our arrival, I’m (slowly) getting the hang of this…….

Kagoshima, on Kyushu, lies at the head of a large bay.  Our green track is the outward-bound track.

The dock itself, we berthed on the south side.

Our ‘greeters’ on the corner of the dock.

Wish I had a hat like that……..

The port lies under the shadow of an active volcano, Sakurajima, although she wasn’t ‘puffing during our stay.

Again, as in all Japanese ports we have visited, the efficiency of all the personnel, including the linesmen, (who tie us up) has been outstanding; undoubtedly the fastest tie-ups I have seen for a long time.  A welcome group was there to greet us, much waving of flags, which seems to be the norm here. The berth is purpose-built, basically a rectangle shaped affair, with reception buildings and ample parking for buses.  

I went ashore with Karen and Hazel, it was the intention to ride the ‘city bus’ and see some of the sights; we took the shuttle bus from the ship to the centre of town, (quite close), however with the traffic and the number of traffic lights, it took us 30 minutes.  I was ‘navigator’ and after a short walk we found the bus-stop and clambered on board.  

Waiting for our bus

A statue of Saigo Takamori nearby.

I was under the impression that the ‘city sights’ tour would involve stopping briefly for a photo opportunity, however this was not the case.  It was more akin to a bus route and the driver, (possibly because he could go home when finished) drove at a hair-raising speed around the route; a F1 driver would have had competition  😉   Alas, but for a few photos,  my 1 hour tour finished with my camera lacking anything worthy for these pages.

Grabbing at straws now, K & H near a plaque, (at least it proves we’ve been to Japan)

A Firemen’s band gave us a send-off and a few hundred of the locals came down too, so there was much whistle blowing to the masses. 

The crowd gathering (and the Firemen giving it their all)

The audience enjoying the music

Local artisans pitched tents, origami making, kimono tying and other arts were on display.

And so we left this friendly city, back down the bay and onto Nagasaki, also on Kyushu, on its west coast.  I write from here, having arrived this morning and having spent most of the day catching up with email, inspections and other matters that involve my position.  We have a day at sea after Nagasaki, on our way to South Korea and I will  try to find time to post about it.  Karen went ashore and she tells me she took photos, so let’s see…….