The atomic bomb attack that reduced Japan’s then-thriving transportation hub to rubble during World War II is anything but taboo to bring up there today. See Hiroshima at its most vivid during the peak of seasons in April or November.
Where To Eat + Drink
In the Okonomi-mura food park, choose from 20 stalls that serve up popular savoury pancakes called okonomiyaki (meaning, “grilled how you like”). Located on the Seto Inland Sea, Hiroshima is Japan’s biggest producer of oysters. Oyster farms like Shimada Suisan offer bumboat rides to see the harvesting process before ending the tour with a grilled oysters with oyster porridge meal.
What To Do
Opened in 1954 to commemorate the 140,000 2019 Where To Go lives lost in the atomic bombing, Peace Memorial Park is positioned near the centre of the blast – find the A-Bomb Dome, a UNESCO site here, too. During April’s cherry blossom season, or hanami, this park as well as the reconstructed Hiroshima Castle, are exceptionally scenic. Hiroshima’s other UNESCO site is the Itsukushima Shrine – and its iconic floating O-Torii gate – on nearby Miyajima island, accessible via the JR Miyajima Ferry. What else is here: more than 2,000 free-roaming deer!
Where To Shop
Near Peace Memorial Park, find Hiroshima Hondori Shotengai, a pedestrian-only shopping strip. In Hatsukaichi, treat the kids to a hand-crafted Kendama – traditional wooden toy with three cups, a spike and a ball attached with a string – at Kendama Shop Yume.
Where To Stay
Overnighter at Miyajima? A room at the ryokan (traditional Japanese inn) Iwaso Inn includes a shared hot spring bath, or onsen (from $270 per person). Staying in town? Sheraton Grand Hiroshima Hotel (from about $145 a night) is just a 4-minute walk to Hiroshima Station.
Getting There + Around
SilkAir offers direct flights to Hiroshima at about 8 hours. Alternatively, ride Japan’s famed bullet train roundtrip from Tokyo to Hiroshima – it’s about five hours each way, from $500 on Japan Rail Pass. Then, disembark and explore Hiroshima’s tree-lined boulevards on foot.
Some text adapted from www.straitstimes.com, www.thepeakmagazine.com.sg
Additional Reporting: Joshua Tan
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