‘Beppu’in Oita Prefecture, where ten percent sources of hot springs out of entire Japan are gushing out, features several ‘Jigoku’ infernoes such as ‘Tatsumaki-jigoku’ and ‘Umi-jigoku’.
Among many sources of hot springs called ‘Jigoku’, literally translated into an inferno or a hell, the eight major ‘Jogokus’ in Kannawa and Kamegawa areas are well known. It is said that too many hot fountainheads around here had prevented the people from farming due to the hydrogen sulfide gas.
However, these obstacles has been changed to the representative attractions of Beppu by the name of ‘Jigoku’ since early in the 20th century. Looking around many ‘Jogokus’ so called ‘Jigoku-meguri’, each of them shows its own mysterious color or a way of blowing up, must be an exciting experience. ‘Chinoike-jigoku’, the blood pond hell, in the picture above shows dark red because of its iron content, while ‘Bozu-jigoku’,the shaven head hell, below is the hot fountainhead through the boiling muddy water.
By Masahisa Takaki.
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