Hiroshima is a place that everyone should be aware of. It was the city that endured the first ever Nuclear bomb that was deployed as an act of war in 1945 totaly destroying the city and killing over 200,000, 50% of its residence. There is a very strange atmosphere around the bombing memorials and reading the stories posted on the monuments is heart wrenching. Because the city was mostly destroyed in 1945, it has a very modern, western feel to it and seems to have really prospered after the bombing. Boasting some amazing museums and shopping districts you really won’t want to miss this little gem.
Most key attractions of Hiroshima are all based around the 1945 bombing of the city.
The Atomic Dome
One of the surviving buildings and what you will see on any literature about the Hiroshima bombing. The Atomic dome used to be an exhibition building but now stands as a reminder to the world how destructive
war can be. Only the skeleton of the bomb remains, the copper covering was melted during the blast. To give you an idea of how hot it was on the ground, copper melts at 1000c!
The memorial park is just over the river from the Atomic Dome and is definately worth visiting. The park contains some interesting monuments and memorials with full English description. We would recommend ringing the Peace Bell in remembrance of the people who lost their lives that day. If you want a touching, personal story seek out the Children’s Memorial and read the story of the little girl who inspired it.
Because we had researched extensively on Hiroshima we knew all the history and facts and had even watched several documentaries. This, and the fact that it was a beautiful city left us just wanting to explore the park and surrounding areas. If you are visiting Hiroshima and are not aware of the history the museum is essential.
The Great Torii and Itsukushima Shrine
A 30 minute train ride down from Hiroshima will bring you to Miyajimaguchi where you can take a short ferry over to the island of Itsukushima. On the island you will be able to explore the Itsukushima Shrine that is built over the sea, and look out upon the great Torrii, a ginormous archway in the sea.
If you are wanting to stay within walking distance of the memorials it’s advised to book several weeks in advance, we struggled booking last minute and had very limited options. Hotels in the Hondori area start from about £40.
Although Hiroshima was flattened it has been rebuilt into a thriving city with restaurants offering all types of cuisine. A short walk to the Atomic Dome will bring you in to the Hondori district. Here you will be able to find whatever you are looking.
Getting around Hiroshima should not be too much trouble if you stay cental, we found everywhere was accessible by foot. However the JR rail services around the area are great and the local tram service fills the spaces in between.