In this post we will summarize the things to do in Hiroshima and Miyajima in one day. In our itinerary through Japan we could not miss the visit to these two tourist destinations. We dedicated half a day to Hiroshima and half a day to Miyajima and it was more than enough. In any case, apart from telling you about our experience, stay and places to eat, we are going to give you some tips so that everything goes well and you do not make the same mistakes as us.
Things to do in Hiroshima and Miyajima
Things to do in Hiroshima
To get to Hiroshima, you can do it perfectly with your JR Pass to Hiroshima Station. Remember to book your train and seats at the nearest JR station. Once in Hiroshima, the city can be visited practically in half a day, since after the nuclear bomb, almost everything had to be built again. In Hiroshima you must visit the Hiroshima Peace Memorial or “The Dome”.
They are the only remains of the attack that the city wanted to keep. In the surroundings of “The Dome” you can visit many other monuments of Peace to children, The flame of fire and the Museum. Another of the attractions of Hiroshima are its shopping streets and, of course, Okonomimura. The best of Hiroshima! We tell you everything in the section about where to eat in Hiroshima.
Places to eat in Hiroshima: Okonomimura
Undoubtedly one of the tourist attractions of Hiroshima are its okonomiyakis or Japanese pizzas. This typical dish is originally from this area and, therefore, is the epicenter of okonomiyakis in Japan. There is a 4-floor building called Okonomimura where you can eat your Okonomiyaki in Hiroshima. We leave you with the photo of the dish and the site that we visited on the 4th floor.
It seemed quite local, as there were only residents who ate while they commented on the baseball game with the chefs. A culinary experience that can not be missed. We recommend the specialty of Hiroshima which is with sweet onion, garlic or scallions.
Hotels n Hiroshima
TIP: Stay in a hotel nearby the station. This way, your trips will be faster and you won’t have to carry your bags much. Our hotel was great, overlooking the river and close to everything on foot. The hotel was called Court Hotel Hiroshima and we barely paid € 42 per night. Super recommended.
Things to do in Miyajima
The next day we woke up and headed to Miyajima Island without much hurry and organization. That was a big mistake, since the island receives a lot of tourism and it is interesting to see the great tori when the tide is high. We arrived at the island around 11:00 a.m. when the tide was already starting to go down and the island was crowded. Almost impossible to take a picture without dozens of people around. We must bear in mind that we are going to visit a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
So, to avoid the rush hour, we decided to go up first to Mt. Misen by cable car and contemplate the views from the top, discover its trails and temples.
Ascent to the Mt. Misen by cable car
The climb to the Mt. Misen can be done by walking, but the way is 1 hour and a half and is very steep. To go down there is no problem and so we did: cable car to go up and down on foot. We found a few tourists who climbed almost breathless and the truth is that if you are not very fit and have all the time in the world, we do not recommend climbing on foot. The cable car is paid and, as we say, you can pay only one way.
Once at the top, there are several trails that run the mountain with views of Hiroshima and all the surrounding islands. At the top there are also several temples (one of them is that of lovers). Once we visited the Miyajima mountains, we went through the main streets of the island, visit the surroundings of the pagoda and the temple and head towards the Great Tori. As the tide was low, we could approach it and touch it, but we certainly believe that its total splendor is at high tide.
Restaurants in Miyajima
In Miyajima we ate an Okonomiyaki with oysters (Miyajima’s specialty) with the hope that it would be like Okonomimura’s. It was a big mistake, since it didn’t taste the same unfortunately. Therefore, we will not recommend the restaurant we went to. The place we wanted to go was closed, the next one was very crowded… and that’s what happens when you improvise.
However, we did eat the best sweet we had in all of Japan. It was a custard filled puff pastry with leaf shape. We bought them in the main street of shops and restaurants. We show you a photo of the site in case you see it. Do not miss these sweets!
Hotels in Miyajima
If you decide to spend the night here instead of in Hiroshima, that is not a bad option if you want to have more chances to visit the Great Tori at high tide. Of course, it is three times more expensive than staying at Hiroshima. We leave you a link to the hotels in Miyajima here.
How to get to Miyajima
To get to Miyajima Island there is a ferry that is included in the JR Pass. No need to book, just get in line and get on the boat showing the JR Pass before entering. There are quite a lot of boats, so don’t worry. Have a look at the oyster crops that are in the sea. Something very interesting if you haven’t seen it before.
And these have been our recommendations on what to visit in Hiroshima and Miyajima. We hope this article has helped you. If you have not bought your JR Pass yet, you can do it here.
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Finally, we recommend that whenever you travel outside your country that you purchase a travel insurance, take advantage of the fact that IATI gives you a 5% discount for being our reader.