Both times I’ve visited Hiroshima I did not have much time to check the city out. To make the most out of my time in the city, I’ve rented a bike to move between different places 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 the 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 for war.
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.
I am a huge lover of Japanese gardens. There is something in them that draws me in. 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. All the cherry blossoms and various miniaturized sceneries, made me fall in love with it. Anyway, check out the pictures as no words are as convincing as them 🙂
If you are in Hiroshima, you have to check out Okonomimura.
It is a building hosting several small restaurants selling Hiroshima-styled Okonomiyaki – a Japanese savory pancake with cabbage, bean sprout, noodles, sliced pork belly, and a fried egg, topped with savory sauce and Japanese mayo. Your food is prepared in front of you on a metal heated plate.
Each stall can fit ~10 people and serves okonomiyaki in different variations. I had no idea what to choose, so I chose randomly and it was heaven in my mouth. I liked it so much; I even attempted to prepare a version at home!
Two years after, I’ve visited the same place again, this time with my boyfriend, who after the first bite became a huge fan. So if you are in the city give it a go!
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 🙂