A “Slow Trip” of Thai Students in Saga

A “Slow Trip” of Thai Students in Saga -Day 1-

Mayuyama Camp Site with a superb view

After leaving Kawago no Okusu Park, students visited the Mayuyama Camp Site. The site is a recommended tourist destination commanding a panoramic view of Takeo’s urban areas, Mt. Hachimandake, and also Mt. Unzen, Nagasaki Pref., on a fine day. Equipped with cooking facilities and lodges, it opens between July 10 and October 9 every year.

At the site, the Thai students participated in the “Water, Wind and Star Festival in Summer” to enjoy exchanges with the local people of Wakaki. It was the first time that this festival, one of numerous Tanabata*2 events celebrated throughout Japan, was organized by local residents of Wakaki.(*2 Also known as the Star Festival, a Japanese festival to celebrate the annual meeting of the cowherd and weaver girl in Chinese mythology)

Students impressed with Tanabata festival

The students climbed, and climbed, and continued to climb up a mountain road to the Mayuyama Camp Site. The site, located halfway up Mt. Mayuyama 518 meters above sea level, is a bit cooler than the foot of the mountain in summer. Campers can spend a summer night comfortably at the site, without air-conditioners.
Before the students’ arrival, at the camp site local people had made hasty preparations for the “Water, Wind and Star Festival in Summer.” The Thai students took part in the festival by writing wishes on tanzaku (strips of colored paper) and hanging them on two huge bamboo trees.


The local junior high school students participating in the program also seemed to enjoy it. One of them said: “I decided to join this two-day program because I wanted to stay a night at a lodge. I am also looking forward to the exchange with Thai students.”
A commemorative photo of participants at the event, which was packed with Wakaki’s attractions


Two bamboo trees had been prepared for the festival, and both were far more than 10 meters long and had grown steadily in bamboo groves in Wakaki.
The bamboo trees with tanzaku, on which wishes were written, were set upright and fixed by participants.


Applause arose from participants who saw the two trees rise heavenward.