There are events in Japan that have left imprints in history. One of them is the Hiroshima nuclear attack that created mass destruction and killed many people in Hiroshima. Such a happening led to the idea of making the damaged area a memorial park instead of redeveloping it. Thus, as a way to remember the victims of the attack, the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park was born. Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park is located in the center of Hiroshima in Japan. In the past, the area was a commercial and residential district. Now, the park is built on its open field, that was the aftermath of the explosion. Every year, millions of people visit this park due to its monuments, museums and lecture halls.
#1. A-BOMB Dome
A-BOMB Dome is the remains of the previous Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall. It is known as the closest building to the nuclear bomb which is still standing to present day. The building remains as is to remember the casualties after the bombing. The A-BOMB Dome became a UNESCO World Heritage Site on December 7, 1996. It also serves as a means to promote Hiroshima’s industries.
#2. Children’s Peace Monument
From the name itself, the Children’s Peace Monument is dedicated to the children who died during the bombing. The statue can be described as a “girl with stretched arms and a folded paper crane rising above her”. The statue was created based on the true story of a young girl named Sadako Sasaki who was one of the many children who died due to the radiation coming from the bomb. She believed she would be cured if she folded 1,000 paper cranes.
#3. Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum
Known as the primary museum in the park, Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum is responsible for giving valuable information to the visitors about the bombing. The museum educates people regarding the cause of the war, the role of Hiroshima in the bombing, and the nuclear attack that took place as well as the effects of the bombing. It offers memorabillia and pictures of the bombing for better understanding.
#4. Memorial Cenotaph
This arched tomb can be found near the center of the memorial park. It is also located between the Museum and the A-BOMB Dome. The tomb has a cenotaph containing all of the names of the victims of the bombing which is estimated to be 220,000 names. The shape symbolizes the shelter for the souls of those who died. There is an annual ceremony held at the park on the anniversary every year. There are speeches during the anniversary and flower wreathes are places at the Cenotaph. Guests also observe a moment of silence at exactly 8:15 AM which is the precise time of the detonation back in 1945.
Sometimes, it is good to look back at one of the most remarkable events in history and the understand the story behind the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park. Learning about the past bombing and its impact can effect the future. Visiting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park will not only feed your hungry for travel but also your curiosity about Japan’s history.
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Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
Address: 1-1 Nakajimacho, Naka Ward, Hiroshima City, Hiroshima Prefecture
Access: 5 minute walk from Gembaku-Dome-Mae Station
8:30 AM – 6:00 PM (March – July)
8:30 AM – 7:00 PM (August)
8:30 AM – 6:00 PM (September – November)
8:30 AM – 5:00 PM (December – February)
200 yen (Adults)
100 yen (Students)
Website: Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park