Gunkanjima – Battleship Island


A ways off off the Nagasaki City Port lies a city in ruin.

A small city no larger than a 30 minute stroll across – home to thousands from the 1880s until the population dwindled to nothing in the 1970s.

Once fully equipped with an elementary/middle school and movie theatre, people lived in the high-rises and toiled in the mines beneath the island and surrounding ocean for coal.

Formally known as Hashima, the island gets its nickname from the battleship form it takes on when viewed from a distance.

A Mitsubishi-funded city, home to around 500 Koreans forced to work under the Japanese during World War 2.

For more information, Wikipedia has all your answers.

My band – Northern Flag

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15 comments on “Gunkanjima – Battleship Island

  1. Pingback: Amaterasu and the Inukshuk | Cameron Ohara - Friendly Gaijin at Large

    • Totally! Ashore was awesome. Well…It woulda been really awesome if they let you off the tour group for exploring time or something. But really the place is literally falling over. Prolly best not to let civilians stray into the fodder.

  2. You made some excellent pictures. the 1st, 3rd and 4th are wonderful, Number 4 is the most interesting to me. I want to go there now. How long was the boat ride?

    • Go for it, man! The boat ride ain’t bad at all. Maybe 30 minutes or so. The trip back is a bit longer as they circle around the island first for pictures, etc.

      Thanks man for the picture likes! Much appreciated coming from a photographer like yourself. :)

  3. I was recently accused of being eccentric for wanting to see Gunkanjima more than anything else in Japan…….. I suppose it is a bit strange. The pictures are great, but I assume you don’t get to see the stairway to hell” on the tour?

    • No!! No stairway to anywhere on the tour! They won’t take you anywhere near the buildings….prolly just as well though. It looks as though everything is about to topple over.


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