Hiroshima is the symbol for the horrors of the Second World War. Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park, hosting the Hiroshima Peace Memorial, draws many visitors, especially for the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Ceremony, an annual commemoration held on the date of the atomic bombing. The park also contains a large collection of monuments, including the Children's Peace Monument, the Hiroshima National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims and many others. Hiroshima's rebuilt castle Koi Castle houses a museum of life in the Edo period. Hiroshima Gokoku Shrine is within the walls of the castle. Other attractions in Hiroshima are: Shukkei-en, Fudoin, Mitaki-dera, and Hijiyama Park. Another attraction is the Miyajima island which lies just off the coast from Hiroshima, containing the Shrine of Itsukushima built on wooden piers over the water.
Located in the central part of the mainland of Japan, Kanazawa is the prefectural capital of Ishikawa Prefecture. Kanazawa Castle Park and Kenrokuen Garden (one of the three greatest gardens in Japan) are located in the center of the city, and they are surrounded by several shopping districts (Korinbo, Kata-machi, Musashi, and Kanazawa Station). Kanazawa has Tera-machi, where 70 temples are gathered together, Owari-cho lined with long-standing stores, and many other historical districts, which happily blend with the modern, fashionable town of Korinbo.
Nestled among mountains in Western Honshu, Kyoto is considered worldwide as Japan's most beautiful city, a living museum of Japan's great artistic heritage. Discover its hidden beauty in its 2000 Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines, as well as palaces, gardens and architecture. Among the most famous temples are: Kiyomizu-dera, a magnificent wooden temple; Kinkaku-ji, the Temple of the Golden Pavilion; Ginkaku-ji, the Temple of the Silver Pavilion; and Ryoan-ji, famous for its rock garden. The "Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto" are listed by the UNESCO as a World Heritage Site. These include the Kamo Shrines, Kyo-o-Gokokuji (Tô-ji), Kiyomizu-dera, Daigo-ji, Ninna-ji, Saiho-ji (Kokedera), Tenryu-ji, Rokuon-ji (Kinkaku-ji), Jisho-ji (Ginkaku-ji), Ryoan-ji, Hongan-ji, Kozan-ji and the Nijo Castle, primarily built by the Tokugawa shoguns.
Miyajima is a short train or tram ride from Central Hiroshima down to the ferry port of Miyajimaguchi. From here the JR ferry takes about 10 minutes. You can travel on the train and ferry using your Japan Rail Pass.
It is the capital and the largest city of Nagasaki Prefecture on the island of Kyushu in Japan. It became the target of the second atomic bomb and the city was devastated.
Nagasaki's history engaged his cultures in various countries and gave them a rich cosmopolitan atmosphere. The highlights include its beautiful seaside scenery, its lands surrounded by ocean, mountain slopes and much more. This city is unique for its festivas and local traditions!
Nagoya, the largest city in the Chubu Region and the birthplace of Toyota makes it a manufacturing powerhouse. It features cosmopolitan aspects such as incredible museums, significant temples, and its imposing Castle among others. Traditional industries like ceramics and textiles as well as key modern industries like automobiles, aviation and machine tools have also developed in Nagoya. This city is situaded between Tokyo and Kyoto/Osaka on the Tokaido Shinkansen line. It's the gateway for journeys north into Chubu's big mountain heart and a great base for day trips.
Okinawa is Japan's southernmost prefecture, consisting of a few dozen island chain which stretches over about one thousand kilometers from Kyushu to Taiwan. The seas surrounding Okinawa's islands are considered among the world's most beautiful with coral reefs and abundant marine wildlife. Consequently, snorkeling and scuba diving are among Okinawa's top attractions.
Located in the west of Honshu, Osaka is the third largest city in Japan, offering many sights and is worth a visit. Though there are relatively few historical sights, the nightlife is extensive and it is an excellent place for shopping. Osaka is traditionally considered the "nation's kitchen" or the gourmet food capital of Japan. Some of the museums well worth visiting are the Museum of Oriental Ceramics, Osaka City Museum of Modern Art, Osaka Municipal Museum of Art, Osaka Museum of History. The Museum of Oriental Ceramics houses 2000 pieces of ceramics. It also features a natural-light gallery for its Korean celadon pottery.
Sapporo is the fourth largest city in Japan by population, and the largest city and the capital on the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido. Since the staging of the Winter Olympics in 1972, Sapporo has became a truly international city, hosting various international events.
Sapporo is known for the city's annual Yuki Matsuri, internationally referred to as the Sapporo Snow Festival. This city offers many parks and gardens and it was formed the Sapporo Brewery that is the currently huge shopping mall with many restaurants, offices, and multiplex movie theatres.
Sendai is the capital city of Miyagi Prefecture and the largest city in the Tohoku region. This modern city offers Mausoleums, hot springs, festivals such as the Tanabata Festival and many attractions and things to do in the Downtown area. Must see are the Sendai Castle, Zuihoden, which is a resting place of the founder of Sendai, the Toshogu Shrine, Osaki Hachimangu Shrine and more.
Takayama is located in northern Gifu Prefecture and officially known as Hida Takayama. It is most famous for the Sanno-machi Historic District and the biannual Takayama Festival, which has been designated as one of Japan?s most beautiful festivals. Among of the highlights of Takayama not to be missed are: Mount Norikura dormant volcano, the ruins of Matsukura Castle, and Ankokuji Temple and Storehouse - recognized as a national treasure.
The capital of Japan, Tokyo is one of the largest cities in the world, consisting of 23 different wards (ku) - cities that have their own special attractions. Among the highlights of Tokyo not to be missed are: the Sony building in Ginza, the Imperial Palace, the temples of Asakusa, Shinjuku Gyoen Park in Shinjuku, Meiji Shrine, Korakuen Garden, the sight of the sacred mountain of Fuji in early morning. A good spot is from top of Government Building in Shinjuku. Tokyo is also known for its many museums. The National Museum, the country's largest museum, specializing in traditional Japanese art, is well worth visiting.
Wakayama is the capital city of Wakayama Prefecture in the Kansai region of Japan. In order to experience what Wakayama has to offer, you must explore outside of the capitol city of Wakayama City. The city also features a large temple called Kimiidera which is worth visiting. It boasts the largest wooden Buddha in Japan. There's also a post-WWII reconstructed castle and a fish market called 'Marina City'. Wakayama is particularly mountainous and the JR train lines trace the coast, providing breathtaking scenes of dramatic, rocky coastline bordered by lush, green mountains and pastoral small towns. The ancient Buddhist pilgrimage route connecting Japan's most sacred temples and shrines, the Kumano-Kodo, winds through the mountains here.
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