At the word “Hiroshima” almost everyone has sad associations. Indeed, a city with a rich history and culture had a very difficult fate – on August 6, 1945 at 8:15 in the morning it was wiped off the face of the earth. But, nevertheless, Hiroshima, rebuilt after those terrible events in the shortest possible time, today is a flourishing and developing city, shows an example of perseverance and hard work.
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How to get there
From Tokyo to Hiroshima, you can take the JR Tokaido / Sanyo Shinkansen train. A direct train takes 4 hours, a train with a transfer at the station in Osaka takes 5 hours. The fare is about 18,000-24,000 JPY.
You can also get from Tokyo by night bus. On the way, about 13-14 hours, tickets – 8600-12 350 JPY.
Plane tickets start at JPY 11,000 and the flight takes about 1.5 hours, but you also need to add travel time from and to the airport, bringing the travel time closer to 4 hours.
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Hiroshima is located in the southwestern part of the island of Honshu. This is not only a major city in Japan, but also the entire administrative center of the prefecture of the same name, as well as the largest city in the Chugoku region.
Hiroshima was founded in 1589, when a castle was founded in the Ota River Delta by order of Mori Terumoto. A city grew up near the castle, populated by Mori’s vassals, as well as ordinary citizens – artisans and merchants. This area was called Hiroshima, which translates into Russian approximately as “wide island”. In 1600, the founder of Hiroshima is defeated at the Battle of Sekigahara, and his possessions pass to Fushimi Masanori. After the creation of the Tokugawa shogunate, from which Hiroshima becomes dependent, having the status of an autonomous administrative unit. In 1619 the castle and surrounding lands passed to a new owner – Asano Nagaakira. After that, the real dawn and rise of the city begins, trade and various crafts develop very quickly here, and wars and unrest practically did not happen.
Nuclear attack on Hiroshima
The darkest and most tragic page in the history of the city is associated with the date of August 6, 1945. At 08:15, the American B-29 Enola Gay bomber dropped an atomic bomb on the city. Hiroshima was almost completely wiped off the ground, 70 thousand people died, 60 thousand died from radiation sickness and injuries. Another 140,000 died six months after the bombing. In 1949, the Japanese government proclaims Hiroshima a “city of peace”, and the titanic work of its restoration begins.
Surprisingly, already in the early 60s, Hiroshima was almost restored, and the territory of the city even increased due to the merger with the surrounding settlements. It is impossible to imagine how hard the work of building up the city was. Today Hiroshima is a modern developed city, but the memory of the terrible events has not been erased to this day: there are many memorials here that remind us of the tragedy.
Entertainment and attractions of Hiroshima
The Peace Memorial Museum, located in the Peace Memorial Park, is one of the main attractions that tells us about those terrible days. In total, there are about 50 memorials in the park: a monument to the girl Sadako Sasaki, known for the sad story of paper cranes, a cenotaph, a ritual bell, a monument to the victims of a nuclear explosion, and many others. Particularly stands out so plastered Cathedral of the Atomic Bomb, which is a dilapidated building. This house was at the very epicenter of the explosion, and was once the Department of Commerce and Industry. The building was not specially restored, but strengthened in order to leave a memory of the terrible August day in 1945. Another reminder of the atomic bombing is the Peace Memorial Cathedral. It was erected in 1954 on the initiative of a member of the Jesuit order, Hugo Lassalle.
The Peace Cathedral is one of the largest Catholic churches in Asia, and various countries and cities took part in its creation and design.
Not to be missed is the famous Rijo Castle, which was built in 1593. The castle was reconstructed in 1957 and now houses a museum that displays a fine collection of samurai armor, swords, various other historical artifacts and an observation deck that offers beautiful views of the city and harbor.
At the foot of Mount Mitaki is the Temple of the Three Trees, famous for the magnificent lacquered red Tahoto Pagoda. Not far from the temple, in wonderful green forests, you can see waterfalls. Another famous Hiroshima temple is the Fudoni Shrine, which serves as a magnificent example of Japanese architecture from the 14th to 16th centuries.
The Hiroshima Museum of Art contains a rich collection of paintings and sculptures by European masters. Among them are the works of Claude Monet, Edagar Degas, Pierre Auguste Renoir, Salvador Dali, Pablo Picasso and many others. The exhibition also features works by contemporary Japanese artists. Next to the museum there is a wonderful Syukkain garden, which was laid out in 1621.
In fact, this green oasis is a garden on the famous West Lake in the Chinese city of Guangzhou, but in miniature. The name of the park is translated from Japanese as “reduced landscape”.