Situated on the Motoyasu River about a 2.5 train ride West of Osaka, is Hiroshima (“Broad Island”), Japan. Known for participating in one of the most important world wars, their mantra changed. Hiroshima began rebuilding their future. Following the events of the war, they dedicated themselves and their mission to peace. Years after World War II, business started up again. Eventually, plants were growing again, an international airport and corporate industries popped up. This southern Japanese city even became a destination for foodies. There are some fantastic historical sites in Hiroshima that you just can’t miss.
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Peace Memorial Park is downtown and has more than 60 popular historical sites. To get an idea of how interesting they are, I spent an entire day just looking at 3. Below you will find a list of ones that I truly enjoyed, and ones I wish I would have been able to see. If you visit them, PLEASE comment with your experience so other readers can partake!
Traveling around Japan is easier than I ever thought possible. The Shinkansen (famous high-speed bullet train traveling at 320km/hr – 199mph) train has a stop downtown. This makes it easy to get access from any major city in the country. A list of Shinkansen lines can be discovered and saved here. Make sure to plan ahead, good seats fill up and some tickets are non refundable and unchangeable.
I don’t recommend driving around downtown. Paid parking is plentiful but if budget demands, take trains everywhere or walk a bit! Kencho-Mae Station is the closest location to the Peace Memorial Park (all sites below are within the park). Downtown is very walkable, and there is a bridge connecting the two sides of Hiroshima.
These 6 historical sites are among the most impactful events in our world’s history. Take some time to really explore these monuments and read the postings at each site.
1. Atomic Bomb Dome – Hiroshima Peace Memorial
A World Heritage Site, the “A-Dome” took on the blast waves of the atomic bomb that exploded 160 meters away. Because of physics and other sciency stuff I don’t know, the exterior withstood the explosion. Consequently, the monument has to be maintained in the exact destruction the bomb caused.
2. Peace Bell
Symbolizing world peace, this bell is open to ring at your pleasure. It’s customary to say a prayer for world peace when you ring the bell.
3. Flame of Peace
This flame has been burning since 1964! After World War II, Japan declared that until nuclear weapons are abolished, the flame will continue burning.
4. Cenatoph for Atomic Bomb Victims
The cenatoph contains the names of all those who lost their life in the bomb. New names are discovered yearly…
5. Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
(pictured above, behind the flame)
This museum showcases the atomic bomb story, victims’ photographs and multiple possessions of the victims. The core values of the historical sites in Hiroshima are centered around world peace and the abolishing of nuclear weapons.
6. Aioi Bridge
Lanterns are lit and released on the Motoyasu River in honor of those that perished on the bridge every year on August 6th.
There is no shortage of historical sites in Hiroshima. After living in Japan, history was everywhere and therefore I fell in love with it. Knowing world history is important in global growth; understanding cultural differences and advances is how the future changes.
What are your thoughts on such deeply historic sites such as these? Let’s chat in the comments! I’d love to hear if you have been to Hiroshima, too.
One last thing
Japan is becoming more modernized but is a little late with fashion. If you’re having trouble packing for a country that errs on the side of conservation, check out this packing guide!
To begin planning your trip, you need to get a hotel/hostel. Conveniently check the availability below!