View of Itsukushima shrine in Miyajima, Hiroshima

Things to do in  Hiroshima

A close encounter with history

Hiroshima is forever associated with World War II-era history, as the first place in the world hit by an atomic bomb. History looms large in modern-day Hiroshima, with the Atomic Bomb Dome and Peace Memorial Park the most visited sites in the city. Hiroshima is also a vibrant modern city with a range of other attractions and things to do—from a castle and formal Japanese gardens to great seafood. It offers easy access to nearby Miyajima, a sacred mountainous island with a beautiful red-gated temple.

Top 4 attractions in Hiroshima

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum

Hiroshima’s Peace Memorial Museum is part of the larger Peace Memorial Park, which commemorates the events of August 6, 1945. On this day, the USA dropped an atomic bomb on Hiroshima—leading to the end of World War II—but at the cost of around 80,000 lives in what was the world’s first nuclear bombing.More

Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park

The Peace Memorial Park in Hiroshima commemorates the atomic bombing of the city at the end of World War II, in August of 1945. The park sits just below the site of the bomb’s mid-air explosion and includes the UNESCO-listed Atomic Bomb Dome, the Peace Memorial Museum, and many smaller memorials dedicated to affected groups of people.More

Itsukushima Shrine (Itsukushima Jinja)

Itsukushima Shrine provides one of Japan’s most famous picture-perfect views: a red torii (shrine gate with an elegantly curved top seemingly floats on water. Itsukushima Shrine is on Itsukushima Island—commonly referred to as Miyajima Island, meaning ‘shrine island’—which is a short distance from Hiroshima. It’s a popular and worthwhile day-trip destination from that famous city.More

Miyajima Island (Itsukushima)

Miyajima Island (officially named Itsukushima) has been a Shinto holy place for centuries and is home to the UNESCO World Heritage-listed Itsukushima Shrine, a red gate (torii) rising from the water just off Miyajima’s shores. Other ancient shrines and temples speckle the island, nestled among a thick forest of maple and cherry trees.More

Top activities in Hiroshima

Hiroshima Departure - 1 Day Hiroshima & Miyajima Tour
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Japanese Traditional Archery Experience Hiroshima
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Private Full Day Hiroshima Tour
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Private Full Day Hiroshima Tour

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All-inclusive Hiroshima Nighttime Food and Cultural Immersion
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All about Hiroshima

When to visit

Like much of Japan, Hiroshima experiences hot, humid summers and moderately cool winters. To avoid summer's sticky heat, visit in spring or fall, which offer pleasant temperatures, clear skies, and prime flower- and leaf-viewing opportunities. The famous sakura (cherry blossoms) bloom in Hiroshima in late March, and the autumn leaves are at their best in mid-November—expect crowds during both. To minimize crowds and keep costs lower, visit in winter.

Getting around

Like many cities in Japan, Hiroshima has a good public transport system consisting of buses and streetcars, as well as trains for travel beyond the center. The system is fairly easy for non-Japanese readers to navigate, with place names transliterated in Roman characters. The central city and main attractions are compact and easy to walk between, including the Atomic Bomb Dome, Peace Memorial Park, and Hiroshima Castle. You can reach Miyajima Island (also called Itsukushima) on a ferry from Miyajimaguchi.

Traveler tips

Although Hiroshima is better known outside of Japan for its WWII history, within the country it is known as a culinary powerhouse. Hiroshima Prefecture supplies most of Japan’s oysters, so seafood lovers should seek them out. Hiroshima is also known for its own take on okonomiyaki, the popular fried pancake-type dish that’s more commonly associated with Osaka. Hiroshima okonomiyaki is lighter on the batter, includes yakisoba noodles, and is often topped with those famous oysters.


People Also Ask

Is Hiroshima worth visiting?

Yes, Hiroshima is worth visiting. It is a large city with a range of attractions for travelers, including the Atomic Bomb Dome and Peace Memorial Park, the reconstructed Hiroshima Castle, museums, galleries, and gardens. Hiroshima is also near Miyajima, an island that’s popular with tourists.

How many days should I spend in Hiroshima?

Three days is the ideal Hiroshima stay. Travelers short on time could see the highlights (Atomic Bomb Dome and Peace Memorial Park) in one day, but with three days it’s possible to explore the city beyond these big-name attractions and to spend a day at nearby Miyajima Island.

Should I visit Hiroshima or Nagasaki?

Aside from their World War II infamy, Hiroshima and Nagasaki are very different cities and both worth visiting. Many travelers find Hiroshima more accessible, as it’s located on Japan’s main Honshu Island. Nagasaki is on Kyushu and has a Dutch trading history as well as the atomic bomb history connection.

What is Hiroshima well known for?

Hiroshima is best known for the events of August 6, 1945 during WWII when it became the first place to have an atomic bomb dropped on it. Extensive death and damage occurred. Nowadays, Hiroshima is a vibrant modern city, and it's known in Japan as a culinary destination.

Why do people want to visit Hiroshima?

Many people want to visit Hiroshima to see the Atomic Bomb Dome and Peace Memorial Park and to learn more about the 1945 bombing of the city. As well as visiting these sites, some people come to Hiroshima to eat its unique okonomiyaki (savory pancakes) and travel to nearby Miyajima.

Is it safe to go to Hiroshima?

Yes, it is safe to visit Hiroshima. Like most of Japan, Hiroshima is very safe and there's little crime. In terms of radiation from the 1945 atomic bombing, there is no risk and no more radioactivity here than elsewhere in the world. The radioactive materials from the bomb disappeared quickly.

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