The eerie ruins of this once-thriving amusement park look set to become Japan’s next unusual place to visit.
In Osaki City, Miyagi Prefecture, a theme park called Kejonuma Leisure Land has been rusting away as a deserted ruin for the past 15 years. The expansive plot of land, now overrun with plants and nature, has an eerie atmosphere that acts like a siren call for haikyo (ruins) enthusiasts, and now a crowdfunding campaign aims to revitalise the area by creating a resort that expands upon the abandoned park’s appeal.
For the locals involved in the project, the abandoned park is an opportunity to help bring some much-needed tourism back to the region, which was damaged in the 2011 Tōhoku earthquake and tsunami. The crowdfunding campaign seeks to raise a whopping 120 million yen (US$1.05 million) to build the new resort, which will preserve the old amusement park equipment as it is today, while also adding new attractions, in order to create Japan’s first-ever haikyo theme park.
If the campaign is successful, the first step will be to create a new onsen hot spring facility, using the hot spring that already exists on-site, which naturally gushes forth 73 litres (2,468 ounces) of water a minute at a temperature of 51 degrees Celsius (123.8 degrees Farenheit).
▼ The current buildings will either have to be demolished or restored in a way that makes them safe for the public to view.
There’s a lot of potential for the site, given its close proximity to a national highway and its scenic, expansive views that include a large number of plum and cherry trees.
Other plans for the resort include tours of the ruins, survival game events, outdoor stages, and a host of other leisure facilities to provide year-round entertainment for locals and visitors to the area. At this stage, they’ve divided the site up into six main areas, with the entrance pictured at the right-hand side of the image below, along with a lake in the centre, hot springs on the right, and the abandoned ruins below.
The crowdfunding campaign is currently open to the public, with backers receiving returns ranging from free admission tickets to naming rights for sections of the park and 10-year leases on plots of land for small business establishments. If the campaign is unsuccessful, all funds will be returned to their contributors, and with 70 days remaining, there’s still plenty of time to throw your support towards the unusual project.
If the thought of rusty theme parks has piqued your interest, you might want to make a visit to Washuzan Highland Park in Okayama Prefecture. While it’s not abandoned, its highlight attraction lets daredevils “sky cycle” on one of the most dangerous-looking old structures we’ve ever seen!