Hiroshima -One of the most well-known cities in Japan
I had heard of Hiroshima before I came to Japan, and the song “Love of Hiroshima” is also famous in China. After traveling there, Hiroshima has become my favorite Japanese city. In fact, Hiroshima is as popular as Tokyo and Osaka, and the streets are full of Western tourists. This time I took an overnight bus to Hiroshima for a weekend trip for my birthday.
Peace Memorial Park
My first destination was Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. Next to the park, on the other side of the river, is the Atomic Bomb Dome. Hiroshima was one of the cities where the U.S. dropped the atomic bomb during World War II, and both Peace Memorial Museum and Peace Park are listed as World Cultural Heritage sites. As I sat on a bench by the river and ate snacks, I had brought with me, the scent of wisteria flowers came from somewhere and it was very pleasant.
If you have a student ID, you can visit Hiroshima Castle for free. It’s a great place for a stroll and you can also take a boat ride to see the castle from the river.
Next, I visited the Shukkeien Garden. This garden was modeled on the West Lake in Hangzhou, China. As we entered the park, there was a small shop selling various works of art. The Hiroshima Prefectural Museum of Art is next to the garden. You can get a discount for admission to the museum with the ticket of the garden.
Miyajima has been a sacred since ancient times and has a quaint atmosphere. Itsukushima Shrine, located on the beach, is worth a visit. The torii gate of the shrine is a beautiful symbol of Miyajima. At high tide, the torii shines on the surface of the sea, and the contrast between the red of the torii and the blue of the sea is amazing. You can see the torii gate up close on a small traditional boat. When I saw the torii, I was so impressed and it’s hard to describe the beauty.
Cute deer, known as God’s messengers, can also be seen all over the island. You can interact with the deer and take pictures of them. In addition, there are various shops on the island, and you can enjoy food such as grilled oysters and Momiji manju (maple shaped cake).
Hiroshima Tsukemen is very famous noodle and is perfect for the hot summer season. The Tsukemen soup is very red and looks very spicy, but it’s actually not that hot and has a nice smell of spices.
Hiroshima Shiru nashi Tantanmen
These noodles contain lots of pepper and Sansho pepper spices. You can adjust the amount of both peppers to make it taste the way you want it. I love spicy food, but this was much spicier than I expected. I also felt a bit of numbness from the sansho pepper.
I love Hiroshima. Maybe it’s because it’s much easier and cheaper to get around the city, or maybe the buildings are taller than in Fukuoka. I really enjoyed walking along the river. Anyway, Hiroshima is a special city for me. I would like to visit again if I have a chance.
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