In Kanazawa I jumped to the bullet train heading straight to Hiroshima 🙂 As I arrived around 3 pm, I didn’t have much time to walk around, so I rented a bike to move between different places relatively fast 🙂
Atomic Bomb Dome
I wanted to visit Hiroshima because of its history. I think it is important to remember what are the real fruits of war and how big the destruction can the atomic bomb bring. Hiroshima also shows the true strength and spirit of the Japanese people. It has not been long since they were bombed (1945) and even though the death toll and destruction was humongous, they rose up and rebuilt the city back to its former glory. In the city, there is only Atomic Bomb Dome left as a tragic reminder of the past. The building has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site as a constant reminder of the price innocent people had to pay.
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
Next to Atomic Bomb Dome is a park where you can find The Peace Bell, Children’s Peace Monument, Flame of Peace, Cenotaph for Atomic Bomb Victims, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum and Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall.
All those monuments are serving as a reminder for the generations to come while simultaneously paying respect to all the people who have lost their lives during the bombing and after. We have to remember that people were also dying long after the bomb exploded due to radiation. You might notice a lot of paper cranes. There is this saying in Japan that if you fold 1000 cranes, your wish will come true.
I didn’t go to the museum as I was there too late, but I strolled around in the park. I was not allowed to ride my bike there as it is not respectful.
My next stop was Hiroshima Castle that has been destroyed by the atomic bomb. After the war, people reconstructed it partially and now visitors can see it and view exhibits about the castle and Hiroshima.
Ok, I will admit, I am a huge lover of Japanese gardens. There is something in them. I enjoy just walking around in silence, admiring nature and cherry blossoms. So when I found out while I was googling about Shukkeien Garden, I obviously had to check it out.
As a garden, it doesn’t have any impressive history, built in 1620, got destroyed during the war and later used by people as a refugee camp. But I enjoyed it. Add to that all the cherry blossoms and various miniaturized sceneries; I fell in love with it. Anyway, check out the pictures as no words are as convincing as them 🙂
This is a place you HAVE TO visit. You can skip anything but this. And this comes from a person that kept stuffing rice balls in the mouth and running around, instead of going to restaurant 😛
So what is this place? Well, it is a place where they sell okonomiyaki – a noodles/egg/cabbage dish that is super popular in Japan. Most popular okonomiyaki is from Hiroshima. Started sounding interesting, huh? Okonomimura is a building where you can find the vendors selling it. There are around 25 restaurants, but they can allocate only ~ ten people each. The reason is that your food is prepared in front of you on the metal heated plate. You can either try to find the English menu or do it gaijin style and randomly pick one 🙂
I was not convinced if I would like it, but as I told myself, it is time to face my fears (food can be soooo scary!!!!), I decided to give it a go. Goshhh, it was amazing!! If not for the fact that after one dish I could barely move because of how full I was, I would totally buy a second serving!!!
Would I want to spend more time in Hiroshima?
Maybe if I had a full day, I could walk more in the gardens, but for me, it was enough. My primary goal was to go to Miyajima island either way. But about that, you have to wait for the next post 🙂