Story Time: Problems with Police

The story of me in abandoned amusement park continues…

Part 1: Lost In Abandoned Amusement Park

Part 2: Abandoned Beauty

 

Like I said I had just visited the broken mirror house and was now walking towards the beautiful huge princess castle. It was amazing. I climbed up the stairs and was welcomed by graffiti and sunshine. Up there I was able to see the whole park. Even the gate I saw my two new friends walking towards. They were leaving and I thought it was my time to leave too. But like the saying goes curiosity killed the cat.

Abandoned Amusement Park Adventure

After taking in the park around me I decided to climb down and continue my trip around Nara. I was just ready walk outside from the castle when I heard some noises. Automatically I hid behind the abandoned castle’s door. I may have also chanted “there is no such a things as ghosts and paranormal” in my head while listening the suddenly too quiet park. I decided the noises must have been caused by wind and continued my way out of the abandoned park.

Abandoned Haunted House In Abandoned Amusement Park

Then I saw funny witch and haunted house. Of course I decided to take closer look! Probably bad decision but I am good at making those so get used to it.

After exiting the haunted house (super haunted and scary!) it was time to leave. I started to make my way towards the front gate when I saw other people between me and the gate. Once again I hid. No way I would go and say hi to randoms in abandoned place! I’m not that crazy…

So I walked towards the other way wondering what should I do. Then I saw car driving closer to me and I knew that I was in trouble. I had a few seconds to decide should I hide or stood there and wait for the inevitable. There was no way I would exit this park trough the front gate when there was people and I wasn’t going to hide in abandoned amusement park waiting for darkness. I stood there and was ready to panic when the car stopped right next to me.

Abandoned Amusement Park Japan Nara

Angry looking older Japanese man stared me and tried to communicate with me using word “stop” and Japanese that I couldn’t understand. I kept apologizing because I had no idea what else to do. The moment was totally chaotic and the man seemed to be as panicky as I was. Apparently tourist girls don’t usually get lost to abandoned amusement parks.

(Why only boys have privilege to do reckless adventures?)

At that point two more guards arrived with their cars and there was more angry babbling in English and all I could understand was that English speaking police was coming to make everything better. Great, I was totally in huge problems. We waited for a few minutes me apologizing and the guards trying to look angry before the first polices arrived.

Abandoned Roller Coaster Japan Nara

This duo of two males was like straight from Japanese crime dramas. If I hadn’t been too busy to apologizing I would have probably found it amusing. Of course these two man didn’t speak English except for few basic words.Another of them was talking to the guards while the other one tried to calm me down despite our language barrier.

Then a few more polices arrived but they didn’t speak English either. At this point someone was trying to inspect my passport while calling to someone and other polices where just hanging around. And then there was those two polices that had first arrived who still tried to come up way to communicate with me. It was total chaos.

Abandoned Amusement Park Nara Japan

Finally young police woman arrived with her perfect English. She explained that I couldn’t be here and tried to ask where my companions were staying. It took too long to explain that I was totally alone here and that I really wasn’t hiding someone somewhere. I of course told them that I had seen other people here today and they weren’t even surprised about that. Apparently they get asked to come and make people go away every day.

I have to say I was finding the situation rather strange than scary. I was standing in colorful wonderland with eight polices and three guards. Did they think I was some kind of super villain? I mean who needs so much forces to escort traveller girl out of abandoned amusement park? But I grant them that if I had decided to run at least they would have had enough people to catch me…

Abandoned Amusement Park Ride

After short interrogation (that felt more like friendly conversation) I was made to apologize once again. I had done it constantly after getting caught so one more time wasn’t problem for me. Then the two first police men and the English speaker promised to drive me to the shrine I had tried to find in the first place.

We went to the police car and right away I got asked too many questions. Why are you travelling alone? Why Japan? Where have you been and what you liked most? How old are you? Wait, you can’t be that young and travelling alone? Are you really travelling alone? What about your parents, aren’t they worried? And the questions went on and on.

Then we had to stop because two traveller boys were walking towards the amusement park. One of the two policemen opened his window to ask where the boys were going to. We all know what their destination plans were but of course no one said anything. Then the polices asked them to not visit the amusement park because it was dangerous and they would get in trouble. The policeman gave knowing look towards me and that must have scared the boys who promised to not go and continued their way quickly.

Temple in Nara Japan

After that I got some tips where to visit while being scared for my life. Japanese streets aren’t made for cars… And finally we found the shrine that just happened to be wrong one but I didn’t dare to tell the truth to the kind polices. However it was beautiful place so I have to thank them taking me there.

In the end the trio wished me good luck and made me promise to share this story with my friends. Apparently they wanted everyone to know how kind and friendly Japanese polices are.

 

So, yeah that was the too long story of me getting in trouble with police for the first time. I hope you liked it or at least enjoyed the photos. Next Friday I hope I can write something more travel related or Christmas themed. See you then!

With love,

Viivi Severina

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Story Time: Abandoned Beauty

So last time I ended my story to the point where I was deciding should I go to the abandoned amusement park with these people I have just met. In the end it wasn’t hard decision (sorry mum…). Of course I went in! You only live once or something like that…

Part 1: Lost In Abandoned Amusement Park

Part 3: Problems with Police

I will again mention that you shouldn’t be like me. Later on this story I learn that visiting abandoned Japanese amusement park in fact is illegal and you will get in trouble. However I also learn that Japanese people and police are so kind and understanding. And I also may learn that there is something charming and special in abandoned places. It’s feeling I can’t even describe. So I hope you like this long boring story of me being totally lost like usually. Enjoy!

(In the first post I meantioned that I had lost almost all my abandoned amusement park photos. However, now I found a few photos more so I hope you will like them!)

Dreaming in Dreamland

abandoned roller coaster nara dreamland

So I was standing next to the abandoned amusement park and the couple I had just met stared me expectantly. After I answered for them all three of us approached cautiously the park’s gate. There was huge gap in the gate and we went inside without any problems.

My first look to the park made me breathless. Cute pastel houses, colorful plastic balls and eerie huge pink princess castle. It was perfect sight and I immediately knew I had done the right choice coming here. We started wandering around and checking what we could find. The couple was taking photos like professionals while I was just staring everything in awe.

After walking around for a while I decided it was time to part from that kind couple. After every minute I was feeling more and more like third wheel. After our goodbyes they continued towards the castle while I decided to wander deeper to the park. When their voices had faded to the distance I felt the scary “I’m all alone in this world” feeling hit me.

nara dreamland

I couldn’t hear birds, traffic or anything except my own breathing and wind. I have never really experienced anything like that so I decided to enjoy every moment and thing there was to see. First I found old roller coaster loop. I think photo of this exact spot is in every abandoned places article/video there is in internet. I hope I had all my photos because it was beautiful. (I don’t know how the heck did I lose half of my abandoned amusement park photos…)

I just stood there staring in awe and not even wanting to continue. How would anything I saw be more beautiful than that? Sun was shining behind the roller coaster and the sky was blue without any clouds. Once again perfect day and perfect moment.

abandoned_cars

After that I saw so many beautiful sights that lose the count of them. Huge swimming pool and water park are with its colorful slides and small food stands. Abandoned cars just being there behind every corner. Building after building full of stuff.  Park tickets, colorful props and dust covering everything except the foot prints wondering back and worth the floors.

It had been over hour at that point and I haven’t even seen half of the park. I saw some kind of  pond and decided to take closer look to it. The ride was adventure and amazon themed. There was sinking colorful boats in the small lake. Then I turned to look the ride’s ticket booth and at the same second started to run and hided behind wall close by. My heart was beating too loudly and for moment I was sure this place was cursed.

I tried to glance the sight that had scared me almost to death. It still looked same. There was someone sitting in the ticket booth. Someone without head and looking like rotten body. After I had evened out my breathing I decided to take closer look. My reasoning side told me there was no way that it would be real body. My more imaginative and scared side was sure it must be zombie or cursed traveller.

abandoned japanese amusement park

I went closer and closer and soon realized theobvious truth. The scary headless zombie body was just prop or decoration for the ride. Someone had propably stolen its head and arranged it there to scare all the intruders like me. The whole situation was making me laugh and I was letting out the sigh of relief when weird noices broke the silence and made me jump back to my hiding spot.

After listening closely the weird noices seemed to be car driving by except I didn’t see anyone. Later on I will realize that it must have been the guard but at that moment I just tough there may be road close by. The noice was gone almost as fast as it had began and I was ready to continue my exploration.

abandoned mirror house nara dreamland

I saw some more interesting thins: merry-go-round, more rides and another roller coaster. It was silent everywhere. Next spot I spend more time in was mirror house. Once again I was strugling with easy question: to go and adventure the inside or stay safely outside? The broken mirrors and messages left to the walls made the place look like scene from horror movie.

I had to jump over some broken pieces so I didn’t get wounds through my sneakers. I got totally lost. There was mirrors everywhere – some broken and some colored with spray paints. I kept walking around not understanding how would children’s amusement park have this place in it. Then I realised every now and then there was small arrows pointing the right way out.

After exiting the house of horror mirrows I continued towards the huge castle I had decided to visit last. I didn’t know how wrong the end of my happy day in abandoned amusement park would soon go! (Well, I had fun and can now laugh for the things that happened but at that time it was horrible…)

mirror_house2
“Not scared at all!”

So well… I may have problem with writing too long stories… Because of that you have to wait until next week to read the ending of my story (and also the main point where I get caught by Japanese police…) I’m sorry, I’m bad at not sharing too much boring things. But I hope you enjoyed my story or at least the photos.

I hope you are having an amazing week!
With love,

Viivi Severina

13 Free things in Montpellier

Montpellier is a cozy old city full of students and local French tourists. Perfect place to spend summer weekend or visit while in south France. For broke travelers like me, all the free attractions and museums are like a heaven. If you are on a budget but still want to do something fun in Montpellier France, this travel guide is like made for you. Here are the best attractions for those who want to experience Montpellier without a lot of money (or just want to see some pics from my trip…)

1. Office de Tourisme Montpellier

Start your Montpellier trip from here. Check out what free event will be held in Montpellier and decide where you would love to visit. The staff is very helpful and you can get many good tips from them. Locals working in Office de Tourisme are the perfect resource for the current most popular free things to do in Montpellier. And don’t forget to take the free map!

2. Place de la Comedie

The key place of Montpellier. This plaza never sleeps and even at bad weather people walk through this main point of the city. Different performers from clowns to break dancers entertain tourists on weekends. However, Place de la Comedie is still must to visit in Montpellier on not as busy weekdays. Take pictures of the beautiful fountain or relax in any of the countless cafes, bars, and restaurants circling Place de la Comedie. Perfect for people watching and getting to know the local life. It’s also one of the things locals do in Montpellier. (They just happen to people watch the tourists while tourists keep their attention in locals!)

Night in Montpellier
At night Esplanade Charles de-Gaulle is light up beautifully

3. Esplanade Charles de-Gaulle

Starting from Place de la Comedie and ending up to Le Corum (the new opera house) goes boulevard totally worth of your time. Three major Montpellier attractions are situated on this road: Musée Fabre, Le Pavillon Populaire photography museum, and the Office de Tourisme. If you’re on a day trip in Montpellier and don’t want to learn how to use the Montpellier trams, this is a perfect place to start.

In addition to these tourist attractions of Montpellier, funny artsy playgrounds, interesting old sculpture (painted in bright colors), and cute small cafes/shops make this street one of the must-see places in Montpellier and South France. Don’t miss the cool graffiti that are visible after you walk down the Le Corum’s stairs. Like we later tell you, one of the free and funny things to do in Montpellier is going graffiti hunting!

4. Le Pavillon Populaire

Free photography museum. Do I have to say anything else? When I went to Montpellier it wasn’t open so I wish you good luck. Apparently, Le Pavillon Populaire is closed for long times between exhibitions. This is must place to go in Montpellier if it happens to be open. You can see exhibitions from local photographers but also from artists well-known all around the world. Those who love museums should visit this free attraction in Montpellier. Even if you don’t usually travel like an art freak, drop by Le Pavillon Populaire. It’s a totally free thing to do in Montpellier! Just walk in and that’s it.

Wanderlust Wednesday: Montpellier Urban Travel Guide
If you don’t cross any tram tracks, you are still in the central area of Montpellier. You will always find back to the Place de la Comedie using the trams.

5. Montpellier’s Old Town

In between Montpellier’s tram lines is the central part of this old city. Tiny alleys, cute gift shops, tasty cafes, and the newest fashion trends – that’s the old town of Montpellier for you. It’s like a mecca for free sights to see in Montpellier and even if you don’t want to visit anywhere just wandering around the streets is a cool experience. Locals, as well as tourists, love this area perfect for getting lost and doing some souvenir shopping in Montpellier.

Tram system in Montpellier is ridiculously easy to learn. Firstly, all the trams lines are designed in their own ways. Secondly, there are only 4 main lines and you can access all of them from Gare Saint Roch. The tram lines also make your day in the old center of Montpellier a lot easier. Why? Just don’t cross tram tracks and you won’t exit the old town. In case of getting lost just follow tram lines not crossing them or take a tram to the Gare Saint Roch station. Traveling using the beautifully designed trams is also one of the funny musts to do things in Montpellier. Not free but the day ticket for tram won’t cost you much!

6. Le Carre Sainte Anne

Changing contemporary art exhibits for free! As an environment for modern art, this former cathedral is perfect. The new art and old settings make a funny contrast that the artists often use as their advantage. Go to the tourist office and ask them what exhibition is currently on. Or just walk around the Montpellier’s old town until you can find the beautiful cathedral of Le Carre Sainte Anne. If free art isn’t enough for you, watch the video above to see what kind of exhibitions you can experience. Without questions one of the best free things I did in Montpellier.

Oh and don’t get lost while trying to find this cathedral!

Free to see Antigone in Montpellier
I won’t admit being like a kid and running over that fountain while avoiding the water… Nope! Why would I do something like that, right?

7. Montpellier’s Antigone

I heard many rumors about locals hating this part of the city. For me, it looked massive and I took pictures in awe. I don’t know how to describe this Antigone for you. It’s a big building/buildings between Polygone shopping mall and Le Lez river. Ricardo Bofill was the architect for this neighborhood of Montpellier and apparently, he didn’t like normal straight houses (or at least Antigone is full of houses in circles!)

There are some fountains and restaurants. Maybe not one of the must see places in Montpellier but if you have some extra time, it’s a good place to take rest. And don’t forget to go to see the river (you can even cross it!)

Montpellier alley
This is a small alley somewhere near museum La Panacee… My map said it should be right here at this place but like you can see it wasn’t! (Or maybe I just suck at reading maps?)

8. La Panacee

Another free museum! Changing interesting exhibitions and cozy sun patio. The only negative side is how hard it’s to find (even when using map and GPS!) Worth of getting lost and maybe never finding your way out of Montpellier…

La Panacee was once – before its path as the Montpellier’s free contemporary art museum – the Royal College of Medicine. However, La Panacee isn’t just an art gallery but rather place for artists and art lovers to mingle. Their all you can eat lunch may not fit your budget but the patio area fits perfectly for having a small break from a long day exploring the free side of Montpellier.

9. Odysseum

Wander around shops or visit local French Ikea. And don’t miss the small plaza full of statues called the park for “great men of the 20th Century”. You can also get free postcards of famous people like Lenin, Nelson Mandela, and Gandhi. (This plaza is located in the opposite direction of Ikea and left side when coming out of the shopping mall.) Odysseum is one of the best places to go shopping in a more modern atmosphere during your stay in Montpellier. Even if you are on a budget trip in South France and don’t want to buy anything, the interesting restaurants and almost a theme park like settings make this one of the must to visit free places in Montpellier.

Statues and art in Montpellier, France
There is my friend Louis XIV. I heard a story of how the statue spend some time on the bottom of the ocean because the ship originally transporting it sank. But now it’s here in Montpellier!

10. Place du Peyrou

Big plaza starting from Montpellier’s Arc de Triomphe and ending to the city’s old six kilometers long water pipe. A good place to take pretty photos and maybe snap a selfie with Louis XIV statue. They also hold big antique flea markets here every now and then! Most locals and visitors name Place du Peyrou as their favorite free spot in Montpellier. It’s not hard to understand why… This park with only a few trees and more sand and hard stone paths charms people with its idyllic atmosphere.

If you’re here trying to find free local things to do in Montpellier, I recommend buying some fine literature from the last century and reading it sitting under Louis XIV’s watching eyes. Or just enjoy the panoramic view to Montpellier from Place du Peyrou like every tourist in Montpellier should!

11. Montpellier Zoo

Go and see animals for free. Who wouldn’t love that? Montpellier Zoo may not be one of the must-see places if time is an issue but it’s still a great place to visit for totally free of the charge. Over 140 species and thousands of animals will keep you occupied for a whole day. Most of the zoo area is totally free and so you can see local or foreigner animals.

beautiful beach and seashell in Montpellier

12. Trip to see the sea

What would be a better way to spend a sunny day than a trip to see the sea? At summer you can blend in with people spending their holidays and at winter time just walk around the deserted seaside of Montpellier. Maybe gather beautiful seashells to souvenirs and build sand castles on the long white sanded beach. Montpellier is a well-known summer holiday destination amongst French and maybe that’s one of the reasons why the city hasn’t found its way on global bucket lists. 

Montpellier Graffiti and street art
Montpellier’s cradle for street art is totally an Instagram worthy place!

13. Graffiti in Montpellier

Montpellier is the capital city of street art. Just remember to look up and there will be graffiti in the walls wherever you go in this idyllic city. And don’t forget to look down because there is graffiti painted to the ground. Even in Montpellier’s tourist map (get it free from the tourist office) they have marked the most amazing street art spots. Whatever you love or hate art, seeing at least some of the most popular street art pieces is a must do free thing in Montpellier. Well, I guess even if you didn’t want it would be impossible to leave Montpellier without seeing at least one of these wild masterpieces!

There are not many cities in this world where you can find amateurs and professionals making street art side by side. Every street and neighborhood has street art to brighten the day of locals and tourists alike! Combining street art and ancient ruins Montpellier truly places itself on the list of places everyone should visit in Europe. Don’t forget to add this forgotten gem on your own bucket list.

 

Have you ever visited Montpellier or France?
What are your thoughts on this country of love and pastries?
I hope you enjoyed my post and like always all comments are more than welcome!

With adventurous mind,
Lost Viivi