Haikyo (Exploration of urban decay)

Haikyo in Japanese literally translates to "abandoned place". These fasinating places are all around Okinawa and of course mainland Japan.

I recently had a meeting with a couple who want to have their family portaits done. The husband, a nice French guy who has been living on the island for 10 years noticed some of my older Haikyo images and asked me if I had heard of some of the places like this on Okinawa.
I had heard of a couple but had not known their locations so he was kind enough to mark several for me on my iPad's GPS.

On the following day off I took a trip to the closest one which happened to be only about 15mins from my place by motorbike in Kitanakagusuku. It is also connected to some old castle ruins which makes the visit all the more interesting. Although there is a 300yen entry fee to enter the castle ruins.

The above image is of the building in question which I intended to explore and to make some images off. It used to be a hotel named The Royal Hotel apparently.
I always enjoy visiting these kinds of places and imaging what they were like when they were a running business and what happened to them. Its quiet an interesting feeling to be wandering around in these huge deserted structures totally alone.

The old hotel walls are now covered with graffiti. Some of it is quite amazing you can see a lot of effort has gone into it, making some beautiful colourful art.

My favorite image of the day came after exiting from one of the side exits to explore some of the surrounds of the building. I noticed it was like nature was trying to reclaim its land as half of the walls were covered in green vines as if they were given enough time going to swallow the entire hotel up.

To visit more images from the day and some other Haikyo images I've made here in Japan visit my Haikyo album on Flickr here.
Also if you know of any other interesting places like this worth a visit here in Okinawa please leave me a note in the comments below! Thanks


Popular Posts