An important city with historic and cultural significance
Hiroshima is situated at the centre of the Chugoku region in western Honshu, Japan's main island. Linked by the Shinkansen bullet train, this modern city was rebuilt post second World War when most of the city was destroyed by an atomic bomb in 1945. Here you will find the Hiroshima Atomic Bomb Dome (Genbaku Dome), a symbol of world peace. Adjacent to the Genbaku Dome, which has been inscribed as a World Cultural Heritage Site, is the Peace Memorial Park, dedicated to the legacy of Hiroshima. The Itsuku-shima-jinja Shrine, also a World Cultural Heritage Site, is located on nearby Miyajima Island, is considered to be one of the three most beautiful sights in Japan. Its symbol is the “floating” Great Torii Gate that stands in the sea. Miyajima is a pretty island with a relaxed atmosphere, small enough to easily explore by foot.
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Here we have selected a few of the sights and experiences that you really should see on a visit to Hiroshima and Miyajima.
Peace Memorial Park
The Peace Memorial Park is a large, leafy space, bordered by rivers, crisscrossed by walkways and dotted with memorials and tranquil spaces for reflection. Its central feature is the long tree-lined Pond of Peace leading to the cenotaph. The monument holds the names of all the known victims of the bomb. Also at the pond is the Flame of Peace, set to burn on until all the world's nuclear weapons are destroyed.
With origins as far back as the late 6th century, Itsukushima-jinja gives Miyajima its name. The shrine's pier-like construction is a result of the island's sacred status, as commoners were not allowed to set foot on the island and had to approach by boat through the torii gate in the bay.
Atomic Bomb Dome
Perhaps the starkest reminder of the destruction visited upon Hiroshima in the Second World War is the Atomic Bomb Dome. Built by a Czech architect in 1915, it was the Industrial Promotion Hall until the bomb exploded almost directly above it. Everyone inside was killed, but the building was one of very few left standing near the epicentre. A decision was taken after the war to preserve the shell as a memorial.
Mazda Zoom Zoom Stadium
This stadium is a good place to catch a baseball game and see the beloved local team, the Carp. A love of baseball is not a prerequisite for having a great time, it's fun just watching the enthusiastic crowd, especially when the despised Yomiuri (Tokyo) Giants come to town.
A selection of tours to Hiroshima and Miyajima
Japan Group Tour City
10 day tour from £3,499
The Essential Japan tour is a perfect tour for the first time traveller to Japan.
Japan Group Tour Rail
14 day tour from £4,699
A tour that explores the very best of Japan’s cultural, natural and UNESCO locations. Journey on the famous bullet train.
Japan Group Tour Food
Essential Japan and South Korea
13 day tour from £4,299
The Essential Japan and South Korea tour is perfect for the first time traveller to these two intriguing countries. Experience the cultures and nature of two nations that boast a fascinating history. This tour provides a taste of Japan and Korea.
Japan Semi-Escorted Culture
15 day tour from £3,899
Explore Japan’s classic sights, starting in the exciting capital city of Tokyo, famous for its fresh sushi.