To most of the people around the world, the port city of Hiroshima will forever be associated with the tragic events of August 6th, 1945, when the atomic bomb was dropped. But when I visited the city for the first time I learned that is not the case at all. I found it to be a lively and beautiful city that has recovered greatly from its scarred past. The city is a reminder of a horrific past, but also bright and hopeful future.
You should definitely plan, at least for a day to visit this beautiful city.
A day trip to Hiroshima is very easy from Kyoto. There are several Shinkansen lines that make the journey between Kyoto and Hiroshima. A journey in bullet trains cuts the travel time by half.
A short history of Hiroshima atom bomb:
On August 6, 1945, the Enola Gay dropped the first of two atomic bombs over Japan. The atomic bomb was exploded 600 meters in the air over Hiroshima. The blast and the heat wave reached the city almost instantly, leaving only well-constructed buildings intact. At the hypocenter, people were killed instantly. Further away from the hypocenter, there were survivors, but many of these people died within a few days to a few weeks, victims of radiation sickness. Those people who lived on the outskirts of Hiroshima survived the bombing, but many of them were affected with cancer and other medical problems in later years.
After the bombing, buildings in Hiroshima were dismantled as part of the rebuilding process. The Atomic Bomb Dome, known before the bombing of Hiroshima as the Hiroshima Prefectural Industrial Promotion Hall was preserved it as a memorial of the bombing and a symbol of peace.
* Atomic Bomb Dome
The Atomic Bomb Dome became a symbol of the bombing of Hiroshima and it was left in place. The Atomic Bomb Dome sits behind a fence and is surrounded by trees. Other than seeing this building, I never would have imagined the level of destruction that existed here seventy years ago.