Monday, February 27, 2012

橫濱宇宙世界樂園(Yokohama Cosmo World)

本園分為三大區第一區摩天輪「宇宙鐘21」、各種驚險刺激樂設施齊聚的「Wonder amuse zone」。恐怖的鬼屋、及可以體驗零下30℃的「冰世界」是屬於「Bulano street zone」。第三區是小孩玩耍的「Kiss Carnival Zone」。摩天輪的霓虹燈飾每15分鐘就變化一次,切勿錯過。

In 1859 Yokohama was transformed from a tiny fishing port into a massive foreign trade port that almost immediately became a party town. After 200 years of the Tokugawa shogunate (shogun warriors) prohibiting travel into or out of Japan, (enforced by the death penalty), US Commodore Matthew Perry and his armada of Black Ships fired on Edo (now Tokyo) Bay until they forced the shogunate into signing a peace treaty that allowed for trade through a few ports in Japan. This event sparked Japan's modernization and rise to world power and not-so-coincidentally moved Japan's imperial seat of power from Kyoto (west capital) to Edo which was appropriately renamed Tokyo (east capital). :-)

Today, Yokohama is still a thriving foreign port and for natives of the area it's known as a fun fair of international culture and worthy of a visit. Pictured above is Yokohama's Minato Mirai area as seen from the observation deck of Yokohama's Landmark Tower. The building on the left that's shaped like the sail of a ship is the Intercontinental Grand (Hotel) Yokohama, and across the water from it (featuring the big ferris wheel) is Cosmo World.

This amusement park isn't your typical ocean side amusement area it has a ferris wheel and nearby are carnival games but the comparisons end there. Rather than having the reputation (that it might in the U.S.) of having the cheap thrills of a Coney Island or Santa Monica pier, this type of amusement is foreign to Japan and therefore exotic and romantic. Why travel abroad when you have it all here? The rides are made to look like their cheap American cousins, but no expense is spared in the dynamic construction and upkeep of these unique rides.

Cosmo Clock 21
This Ferris Wheel was the largest in the world when it was built, but that wasn't enough for the planners of Cosmo Clock 21. They also added a digital clock and a light show to the face of the wheel. Why? Well, it makes for an awesome countdown on New Year's Eve, with the lights reflecting in the water and the countdown visible for miles there's no mistaking when the fireworks start in Yokohama.

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