The name Hiroshima is synonymous with the Second World War and the devastation of the atomic bombs dropped on the city. Today, Hiroshima is vibrant and modern, with Miyajima Island (home of the famous “floating” torii gate) just a short ferry ride away.
The city hasn’t forgotten its tragic past, and there are poignant reminders of the bomb attack at the A-Bomb Dome, where you can see the preserved bombshell, as well as the eternal flame at the Peace Park and Museum. These important places to visit provide a thorough education on Hiroshima’s history.
Since the end of World War II, the city has been rebuilt and reborn into a culture and business hub, with lots of activities and attractions for visitors too.
Baseball is one of Japan’s most popular sports, so catch a game at the MAZDA Zoom-Zoom Stadium and cheer on the local team, the Hiroshima Carp. Take a tranquil stroll around Shukkei-en Garden and contemplate nature, or visit the Hiroshima Prefectural Museum of Art for impressive artworks, as well as impressive views of the city.
The original Hiroshima Castle (also known as Carp Castle), was destroyed in the bomb blast, but a reconstruction of the 1589 building now stands in its place.
Nearby Miyajima Island is a popular day trip from Hiroshima (or you can stay overnight), less than an hour away by ferry. People flock to see the famous and photogenic giant “floating” Torii Gate, which is one of Japan’s most scenic places and can often be seen on the covers of Japan travel guidebooks.
The island’s official name is Itsukushima, although it is more commonly known as Miyajima (shrine island) after the Itsukushima Shrine, which is built over the water like its floating torii gate. Aside from the gate, there are also tame deer to look out for and the monkeys of Mount Misen to avoid. You can scale Misen by cable car for beautiful ocean views.
Hiroshima is truly a city risen from the ashes; its tragic past is sensitively commemorated, while the city moves forward with a defiant, youthful energy. Just off the coast, the sacred site of Miyajima is a peaceful day trip away.