Day 9 Japan Hiroshima October 13th, 2012
Wake up early this morning to catch the 5am train to get to Hiroshima. On leaving hotel front desk girl ran out as I apparently didn’t pay for BK from day before. But paid it when she caught me at the train station. Anyways board the nice train again and have a direct ride all the way to Hiroshima. Arrive into Hiroshima and the station here is quite big. But really neat place. I have directions to get to hostel I am staying at Hana Hostel. Its only 4 minute walk from train station. I check in early and the front desk people are very nice. It turns out the hostel is more of a budget hotel. As I get a private room that is decent actually.
Anyways here is some history of hiroshima from the sources. Hiroshima (åº�å³¶å¸� Hiroshima-shi?) ( listen (help·info)) is the capital of Hiroshima Prefecture, and the largest city in the ChÅ«goku region of western Honshu, the largest island of Japan. It is best known as the first city in history to be targeted by a nuclear weapon when the United States Army Air Forces (USAAF) dropped an atomic bomb on it at 8:15 A.M. on August 6, 1945, near the end of World War II. Its name åº�å³¶ means “Wide Island”.
Hiroshima gained city status on April 1, 1889. On April 1, 1980, Hiroshima became a designated city. The city’s current mayor since April 2011 is Kazumi Matsui. So after leaving my bags at the room I then to go out to explore. Main objective today is head to Peace Park the site of the WWII memorial site. On walking out I make a wrong direction and go off track. However I found myself in front of one of the baseball stadiums here the Mazda stadium, quite interesting.
From then walk along a river then find main street to walk on. I walk in main downtown of the city. Head to a mall and get some money from ATM from the 7-11. I finally make my way down at Peace Park. Here is some information about Peace Park:
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park (åº�å³¶å¹³å��è¨�å¿µå�¬å�� Hiroshima heiwa kinen kÅ�en?) is a memorial park in the center of Hiroshima, Japan. It is dedicated to the legacy of Hiroshima as the first city in the world to suffer a nuclear attack, and to the memories of the bomb’s direct and indirect victims (of whom there may have been as many as 140,000). The location of Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park was once the city’s busiest downtown commercial and residential district. The park was built on open field that was created by the explosion. Today there are a number of memorials and monuments, museums, and lecture halls, which draw over a million visitors annually. The annual 6 August Peace Memorial Ceremony, which is sponsored by the city of Hiroshima, is also held in the park. The purpose of the Peace Memorial Park is to not only memorialize the victims, but also to establish the memory of nuclear horrors and advocate world peace.
The park is a good memorial and there is a building that was still standing after the bomb went off. A very creepy feeling in this area, but quite interesting place. Best way as they dont glorify the tragedy and just keep it in more of a neutral form. I walk around in the park more and visit the museum more on this history.
From here I then walk to a castle that is in the area. A nice walk to the convention centre of some event was going on there.
The castle is called the Hiroshima Castle. Hiroshima Castle (åº�å³¶å�� Hiroshima-jÅ�?), sometimes called Carp Castle (é¯�å�� RijÅ�?) was a castle in Hiroshima, Japan which was the home of the daimyÅ� (feudal lord) of the Hiroshima han (fief). Originally constructed in the 1590s, the castle was destroyed in the atomic bombing in 1945.It was rebuilt in 1958, a replica of the original which now serves as a museum of Hiroshima’s history prior to World War II.
Quite a nice castle and when I walked up to the top, you get a nice view of the city of Hiroshima. To which I then plan next plan of action for the city. On exiting the castle I discover I lost my map of the city. Probably dropped it when I was drinking my cold can of coffee. I then able to navigate to the downtown core of the city and proceed to walk in the malls and food areas of the city.
At this time I was getting hungry as it was near dinner time. I make my way back to train station only to cheat and get a small snack from 7-11. I finally find some restaurants in a mall by Hiroshima station. Tonight meal is noodles and crab soup and some of the stuff. Quite tasty and pure japanese satisfaction. Have a small late afternoon rest at Hana Hostel then head back out to the RLD of Hiroshima. Just to see how the Saturday evening crowd is like. Being a Saturday night it is quite busy in the entertainment area. I am finding this area a little sketchy as I walk past a few of these mystery clubs and I am almost grabbed by these great big guys in suits. So I decide that this is not for me and call it a night. Stay tuned for next day adventure in and around Hiroshima.