For today’s Fun Link Friday, Nihonoranda.com, a beautiful website centered on a map of nearly 191 Dutch-related sites, events, and organizations in Japan.
Organized by the Embassy & Consulates of the Kingdom of the Netherlands in Japan, the site integrates Google Maps, for a wonderfully beautiful and intuitive interface. Zoom in on any part of the country, and icons pop up on the map marking Shops, Traditional sites, Historical sites, Events, or Organizations. Did you know there are as many as 61 Dutch-related sites in the Greater Tokyo Area? And, of course, a great many in Kyushu (esp. Nagasaki) as well.
Points included on the map range from festivals such as the Anjin Festival in Miura, to graves of historical figures such as diplomat Henry Heusken and Rangaku (“Dutch Studies”) scholar Sugita Genpaku, to art museums that contain Rembrandts or other works by Dutch artists, to municipalities such as Niigata Prefecture which have some sister relationship with Dutch provinces, to the Japan Korfball Association (whatever that is), to the Huis ten Bosch theme park, restaurants that serve Dutch or Dutch-influenced food, and, of course, Dejima itself.
Click on any one of these markers, and a brief summary of the site & its significance appears, in both Japanese and English, appears, accompanied by the address and (where applicable) phone number and website.
I wish we had such resources for Korean, Chinese, American, French, British, Russian or Ryukyuan sites throughout Japan. It’s good fun just to play around with and browse through – and beyond that, is a great resource for someone like myself, looking for interesting if somewhat obscure historical sites to visit, and, I’m sure, would be a great resource for a variety of other purposes as well.