Translated by Lester Somera
Make The Most Of Your Hiroshima Trip With This 3-Day Itinerary!
Written by ニコ
There are many wonderful sightseeing places in Hiroshima. Make sure you include in your itinerary Hiroshima Castle, the Peace Memorial Park, Miyajima and other great destinations, but also enjoy Hiroshima's delicious local cuisine.
Hiroshima - A City Of World Heritage Sites And Amazing Food
Hiroshima is the largest city in the Chugoku region. It faces out onto the Seto Inland Sea, and experiences good weather all year round. Known around the world for its two UNESCO World Heritage Sites - Miyajima’s Itsukushima Shrine and the Genbaku Dome (A-Bomb Dome) - Hiroshima sees many visitors from overseas. It is also known as the city where the first atomic bomb was dropped, and has international clout as a city of peace.
However, while Hiroshima is a city of peace, it also has other facets, such as its gourmet cuisine, like the area’s beloved okonomiyaki and oysters, as well as clusters of shopping complexes in the downtown areas that will delight tourists. Here we’ll introduce a three-day itinerary for people who want to use their time efficiently in order to see the best of Hiroshima.
Day 1, Morning - The Genbaku Dome
First, let’s head to the Peace Memorial Park to get a close-up look at the Genbaku Dome and think back to that time. After that, enter the park, offer a prayer to the Cenotaph for the A-Bomb Victims, and visit the Peace Memorial Museum to recognize the tragedies that resulted from the atomic bomb blast, and the importance of peace.
After your museum visit, head to Hiroshima’s new landmark, the Orizuru Tower, to command a view of the Genbaku Dome and Peace Memorial Park from above. At the Orizuru Plaza on the 12th floor, fold a paper crane and imbue it with your prayer for peace, then place it into the Crane Wall.
Day 1, Afternoon/Evening - Delicious Genuine Okonomiyaki
For lunch, head to Okonomimura in the city for genuine okonomiyaki. To work off your meal, do some window shopping as you walk through Namiki-dori, Hon-dori, and the underground shopping centers Shareo and Pacela on your way to Hiroshima Castle. After you get a sweeping view of Hiroshima City from the castle tower, retrace your steps and do some shopping at Pacela, Shareo, Hon-dori’s shopping streets, and Parco.
Day 1, Night - Oysters At A Specialty Restaurant
At the end of day one, head to a restaurant to sample Hiroshima’s famous oysters. There are plenty of places in the city to choose from, like Toyomaru Suisan on Hon-dori, and Sakana-ya Dojo’s Hiroshima Tatemachi Branch near Fukuya. If you want something more high-class, visit Kanawa in Moto-Yasugawa, a riverside market that specializes in oysters. Enjoy a full course of tender oysters.
Day 2, Morning - Miyajima and Itsukushima Shrine
On day two, it’s finally time to do some sightseeing on Miyajima. Take a JR train or the streetcar to get to the port. From there, it’s a ten minute ferry ride to the island. You will see a giant torii gate floating atop the sea, and then the World Heritage site, Itsukushima Shrine, will come into view.
Once you arrive on the island, first, head to the Omotesando shopping street. Here you can buy deep-fried momiji manju, nigiri-ten sticks, grilled oysters and other snacks to eat as you walk to Itsukushima Shrine. Enter the shrine building, walk through the corridor, and you can visit the treasure hall, two-story pagoda, and Daishoin Temple, among other sights. During the low tide, you can even walk all the way out to the torii gate!
Day 2, Afternoon/Evening - Buy Souvenirs And Enjoy Leisure Activities
On your second day, have lunch at a stylish cafe on Miyaji. Stop in at Café Lente, located by the river past Daiganji, and relax with a healthy lunch and organic coffee. You could also visit Sarasvati near Itsukushima Shrine and order a lunch plate or pasta set! The streets in Miyajima’s quiet neighborhoods are dotted with other cool spots, too.
On your way back, pick up one of Miyajima’s famous shamoji rice scoops at the Omotesando shopping street. You can also buy a clay bell or another clay souvenir. We also recommend trying out some Miyajima-exclusive activities, like baking momiji manju, Miyajima wood carving, and shamoji making.
If you have some extra time and you brought the kids, Miyajima has an aquarium, and in the fall, you can see the lovely colorful foliage.
Day 2, Evening - Conger Eel For Dinner
For your second dinner, let’s eat Miyajima’s specialty, conger eel!
Some well-known spots which serve eel meals are Inachu in Omotesando and Anago-meshi Wada on Machiya-dori, which has a large shamoji outside as a landmark. With so many people lined up outside, the restaurants may close after selling out of eel, and only operate until the evening, so please be aware of this.
There are places to relax and eat at night, too! Manetanuki, in cooperation with the ryokan Kinsuikan, has dinner from 5 PM to 11 PM, and the traditional kaiseki course restaurant Tanikichi at the entrance to Miyajima serves dinner on Fridays and weekends from 5 PM to 10 PM.
By the way, you can order conger eel at Anago-meshi Ueno, located on the first floor of Tanikichi, then come to pick it up on your way home.
Day 3, Morning
On day three, let’s make full use of the Maple Loop sightseeing pass to check out three museums in Hiroshima City. First, head to the Hiroshima Museum of Art in the heart of the city, then the Hiroshima Prefectural Art Museum. After you’ve gotten your fill of art, go to the scenic Shukkeien Park next door! Stroll around this park with a central pond and enjoy looking at the seasonal flowers.
Day 3, Afternoon/Evening
On the third day, try the Hiroshima regional specialty, tantanmen noodles with no broth. These noodles are heavily spiced with Japanese pepper to give them a sharp, strong taste. After you finish the noodles, mix in some rice for double the deliciousness!
From Shukkeien, walk over to Hacchobori, and soon you will find Chuka-soba Kunimatsu, the store that sparked the tantanmen noodle boom. There are plenty of other tantanmen restaurants in the area, so check for yourself.
Use the Maple Loop pass to head back to Hiroshima Station from Hacchobori. Walk around Hijiyama Park and take the long escalator down from the Hijiyama Skywalk esplanade, and you will arrive at the Danbara Shopping Center. From here you can take the bus to Hiroshima Station.
You will find shopping around Hiroshima Station at places like Asse, LL, Fukuya, and Shinkansen Meitengai. You can choose from a wide variety of souvenirs.
Day 3, Night
On the last night of your three-day trip, have dinner at the Hiroshima Station building or somewhere close by and savor Hiroshima’s famous okonomiyaki.
Satisfy your belly with local food at a well-established okonomiyaki restaurant like Micchan or Reichan before wrapping up your Hiroshima travels.