Sunday, November 2, 2014

World War II on Saipan (by L.)

Shrine containing the "Bell of Peace and Harmony": just one of many memorials
of the war on Saipan that are dedicated to prayers for world peace

There are many ways to learn about World War II on Saipan, due to the infamous Battle of Saipan. There are monuments and sites that are popular tourist attractions (see above).  The two photos below, however, were not taken at such sites; my dad and I stumbled upon them while hiking in the jungle, where there is not even a path!

Sometimes people even come to the jungle to clear out the UXO's and bring them to a dump.

Cannon shell  (step lightly!)


Undetonated grenade (yikes!)

On another day, we got lost looking for a particular beach and accidentally discovered Saipan's Hidden Grotto.  Apparently, the man who made that video had been looking for this cave for ten years!  Lucky us, we landed on it even without trying.  That brave explorer from the video also found some UXO's (Unexploded Ordnance) and believes that the Japanese had a cannon there during the war.  Too bad we do not have any of our own photos to include here; we did not have the camera along with us.

Finally, the photos below are of many such bunker remains that can be found right near the waterfront. There is even one at a resort where they store their rental paddle boards, life vests, kayaks, etc.! 
Just one of many, many bunkers at the beach

There are also tanks at some beaches that broke down while driving to the shore. They are still there and are home to many tropical fish. 

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