Tuesday, June 23, 2009

Hiroshima 広島の旅館

Hiroshima! So over the last weekend I went to Hiroshima with Carrie. We left early Friday night. I actually left school 15 minutes early.

After I got home I finished getting ready then headed to the bank. At the bank I finally got to transfer money home. After that Carrie and I parked our bikes at the station and took a taxi to the bus station to go to Tokyo from Sano.

Once we got to Tokyo, it was off one bus and onto another. We had 30 minutes to find the bus station to go to Hiroshima. This sounds like plenty of time but we barely made it. We had to search in Shinjuku, at Shinjuku station, a place where over 5 million people go through in one day. Shinjuku station is one of the busiest and most confusing stations in all of Tokyo. I would go into details but it would just confuse you and me ha.

Anyways we finally found the bus maybe 5 minutes before departure. We got on and could finally relax. It took a total of 12 hours to get to Hiroshima from Tokyo by overnight bus. I tried looking out the window to see things because we basically went across all of Honshu, Japan’s main island (Tokyo in the east to Hiroshima in the west).

The problem was it was night and the view from highways in Japan is awful, there are big walls blocking them off so you can’t really see anything.

We arrived at 8:00am. After a little confusion on figuring out where we were we found how to get to our hostel. The hostel, I think it was called K’s House was really nice. I haven’t stayed in many hostels over my life but it was the nicest I’ve seen. Everything was really clean and our room was nice. We got to check in earlier than normally allowed. We got to take showers after that 12 hour long bus ride, which felt great. Once we showered we started our day.
Here are the picture links:

Hiroshima Part 1

Hiroshima Part 2

We first headed for the Peace Memorial museum. The peace memorial museum was pretty amazing. Everything was displayed in about 5 to 6 different languages which was great. All of things in the museum were very moving.

8:15 the moment the bomb was dropped

This is a replica of the city after the bomb exploded
The red ball is the bomb after 1 second
The white sign is where I am (the museum I was in)

Right outside of the museum are tons of monuments dedicated to victims of the bombing. Here you can see paper cranes.

After the museum we went to the Atomic Bomb dome. It was crazy to see a building that was so close to the hypocenter of the bomb but was still left standing. It was also weird walking around throughout the day thinking that 64 years ago around this time Hiroshima was an entirely different place. All of the people were different all the buildings were different..

Next we headed for Miyajima Shrine. Miyajima is one of the most famous landmarks in all of Japan. It’s called the floating shrine. (Look up torisen) It was a beautiful place. Unfortunately it was cloudy so I didn’t get as great pictures as I hoped but it was still an amazing sight to see.

Carrie and I caught the second to last ferry back to the mainland. Then we took the train back and walked to our hostel. After resting a bit and regrouping we headed out to search for some dinner and a bar. We looked for a place called Spuds which we read about. It was a bar with cheap beers baked potatoes and BBQ food. We search for literally 30 – 45 minutes for the place but alas we never found it! We got hungry at this point so we just ate a place which is famous for Okonomiyaki which in Hiroshima is special because its made differently. See picture:

After dinner Carrie felt a bit tired and so did I so we just called it a night. I would have gone out bar hopping but that would have been boring doing it alone. We headed back and stopped into a Seattle’s best coffee and got some dessert. Once we got back we went to sleep in our fashionable bunk bed haha.

The next morning we woke up got ready and headed for Hiroshima Castle. Carrie’s ankle was hurting so she didn’t go inside, but I checked it out. I went all the way to the top and it was a nice view. Since it was a reconstruction the inside was just a museum, but they did have the layout of the castle blueprints. They also had a few rooms set up as if it was the original.

After the castle we checked out a few museums. At the prefectural museum there was also a park. Once again Carrie decided to sit it out, but I walked through. I saw more wildlife, or variety of animals on this walk than I’ve seen since I’ve been here. There were tons of baby crabs, or small crabs walking around. There were tons of carp and turtles, and birds. A crab even followed me into the coffee shop, it must have been on me somehow.

After the museums we headed back to the hostel to pick up our stuff and catch the bus back to Tokyo, then another bus back to Sano.

Over all it was an amazing trip. I’m really glad I went, and I’m thankful to Carrie for organizing it. I recommend it to anyone who comes to visit Japan as it is an important part of the history and it holds two world heritage sites.

On a side note I can’t believe I’m less than a month away from leaving. I can’t believe a year has almost passed since I’ve been here.

1 comment:

Dan Saper said...

Loved Miyajima, personally -- one of my fave shrines in Japan.