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Hiroshima

Hiroshima is one of only two cities in the entire World, that has seen the tragedy of an Atomic Bomb. A great example of how a city and people can rebuild the infrastructure of a city as well as their spirits. Hiroshima is also the home to the Unesco registered Itsukushima Shrine also known as the floating Shrine.

Hiroshima is the principal city of the Chugoku Region and home to over a million inhabitants.
When the first atomic bomb was dropped over Hiroshima on August 6, 1945, the city became known worldwide for this unenviable distinction. The destructive power of the bomb was tremendous and obliterated nearly everything within a two kilometer radius.
After the war, great efforts were taken to rebuild the city. Predictions that the city would be uninhabitable proved false. Destroyed monuments of Hiroshima's historical heritage, like Hiroshima Castle and Shukkeien Garden, were reconstructed. In the center of the city a large park was built and given a name that would reflect the aspirations of the re-born city: Peace Memorial Park. Hiroshima is most famous for its a-Bomb Dome.

Accommodation can be arranged at Hiroshima City or on Miyajima island. However, if you are staying the night in Hiroshima City, you have the opportunity to walk to the Atomic Bomb Dome after you arrive into Hiroshima by the bullet train, which means you can get an introduction today, and then have a Guide explain things in more depth tomorrow. 

A fun way to get from A to B is to use the retro style trams. You can get to the main attractions by these trams and it is very inexpensive. 

While in Hiroshima, make sure you enjoy the local food. The HIroshima-yaki style of the Okonomiyaki is different from the Osaka Okonomiyaki, and Hiroshima's Oysters are known all over the country. Kure and Hiroshima Ramen Noodles are also a great way to snack during your sightseeing.    

Another popular visit while in Hiroshima, is a visit to Miyajima Island to see the Unesco registered Itsukushima Shrine.  Also known as the floating Shrine, this shrine and large red Torii gate in the Hiroshima harbor is impressive both when the tide is in, and when the tide is out. Itsukushima Shrine is the most photographed location in Japan, and while you are taking photos, there will be deer following you around. If you are an active traveler, you may like to take the Gondola up to Mt Misen, and then take a nature walk down while enjoying panoramic views. Miyajima can be accessed by the local trains and the a quick ferry ride, or a speed ferry from Hiroshima City central.    

The three top Sake producing areas of Japan are Hyogo Prefecture (Kobe), Fushimi (Kyoto) and Higashi Hiroshima in the Hiroshima Prefecture. Located approx. 35 minutes east of Hiroshima, you can arrive at the local station and then walk around the many Sake Distilleries. The streets are lines with Japanese Style houses, and Sake storage houses, and there are some 27 Distilleries in the same area. Of course there are musuems that tell the history of Sake in the region and tastings await. Nothing better than the famous Hiroshima Oysters with some Hiroshima Sake.

Hiroshima is also the gateway to Onomichi City, and also for the Shimanami Kaido which is a long cycling route that lets you cycle over the bridges that link several islands that make up the Setouchi inland sea. Cycling on your bike over the emerald blue waters is something you will not forget soon. 

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Scott and Experience Japan Travel planned the perfect trip for us. We decided to go to Japan for our honeymoon and thanks to Scott, I am confident that we made he right decision. We had a brief conversation with him initially and told him our interests and things and places that we would like to do and see, and he quickly developed an incredible itinerary that was EXACTLY what we wanted. We were only in Japan for 10 days, but we experienced SO MUCH! We had never been to Japan before, but were able to do so many things that we had envisioned ahead of time and so much more that we didn't even know about. From the gorgeous hotel accommodations and delicious food, to the breath-taking sight seeing and culture, this was truly a mind blowing vacation. Scott and his friend/coworker, Nao, even met up with us in Kyoto and showed us an incredible time. While in Tokyo, we had the rare opportunity to experience the Sanja Festival in Asakusa. The energy and enthusiasm of the crowd was absolutely intoxicating. The second we came out of the subway station, the streets were packed with people, shops, and food. The temple and shrines were beautiful, and the festival had these portable shrines and floats (I guess you would call them parade floats) that tons of people were carrying or pulling. Definitely a once in a lifetime experience! Nara was incredible. Not only are there thousands of deer that you can walk and mingle with (and feed!), the area is wonderfully spiritual. There were so many temples and shrines. Each one was so unique and so pretty. Arashiyama. MONKEYS!!!! Nowhere else have I ever been able to have so many monkeys just wandering around so close to me without a care in the world! We even got to feed them. They take the food right out of your hands! And the baby monkeys were freaking adorable! Drinking/Dining in Kyoto. The day that Scott and Nao met up with us was really cool. Scott took us to a whiskey distillery and beer brewery and Nao joined for sake and food/drinks after that. They took us to the Fushimi Inari Shrine (which was SO beautiful) and then to some local places after that. The local places I am sure we would never have had the opportunity to experience if it hadn't been for them. There was so much more that I want to share, but seriously, go see for yourselves! From the bottoms of our hearts, thank you guys! Best.... READ MORE

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