1564-1 Mikawamachi Nekasa, Iwakuni, Yamaguchi 740-0505.
On Sanyo Expressway take exit Iwakuni. On Chugoku Expressway take exit Muikaichi.
DEC to FEB Mon, Thu-Sun, Hol 10-16.
MAR to NOV Mon, Tue, Thu-Sun, Hol 10-17.
Closed 01-JAN, 31-DEC.
Adults JPY 1,980, Children (4-11) JPY 990, Children (0-3) free, Disabled JPY 990.
Groups (20+): one free per 20.
|Light:||Incandescent Electric Light System|
|Guided tours:||self guided, L=1 km, D=60 min.|
|Address:||Underground Kingdom Mikawa Mu Valley, Mikawa Development Co., Ltd., 1564-1 Mikawamachi Nekasa, Iwakuni, Yamaguchi 740-0505, Tel: +81-827-77-0111, Fax: +81-827-77-0851.|
|As far as we know this information was accurate when it was published (see years in brackets), but may have changed since then.
Please check rates and details directly with the companies in question if you need more recent info.
|1996||opened to the public.|
地底王国美川ムーバレー (Underground Kingdom Mikawa Mu Valley) is an old abandoned mine which was revived as a theme park. This is actually neither a mining museum nor a show mine. It is a manga/game/fantasy theme park, but it is located underground in the cleaned mining tunnels. The statues and other stuff you find in the tunnels is not real, its plastic, a movie set. The copied Maya temples, statues and hieroglyphs, added some lost continent of Mu legend and some ancient alien stuff, to create a park which is obviously very popular among children. Of course, they tell a legend the ancient temple was discovered at the end of the mining activities.
It turned out that a great civilization is prospering underground. Therefore, a new Mikawa Ancient Ruins Excavation Survey Team was formed, and the investigation of the underground space is still underway. The discovered underground space is named Underground Kingdom Mikawa Mu Valley, and a part of about 1 km was opened to the public. You will see huge stone statues and hidden doors, giant soldiers lined up to block intruders, waterfalls that flow from high above into the mysterious lake, and huge spaces. Ancient characters drawn on the wall of the Mural Corridor have not yet been deciphered.
The abandoned mine is located in the Chugoku Mountains, at the Negasa River, a tributary of the Nishiki River. The buildings shattered along the river in the narrow valley belong to the village Mikawamachi Nekasa. The mine was named 玖珂鉱山 (Kuga kōzan, Kuka mine)
While it sounds really subterranean, the statues and sculptures are actually quite nice. There are worse such theme parks, and it its not totally brain-dead, its less boring for the adults. We actually liked the rice in the restaurant, which has the shape of a pyramid.