Abandoned island lying about 15 kilometres (9 miles) from the city of Nagasaki, in southern Japan. Abandoned concrete buildings and the surrounding sea wall.
|Native name: |
Nickname: Battleship Island
|Area||0.063 km2 (0.024 sq mi)|
Hashima Island (端島, or simply Hashima, as -shima is a Japanese suffix for island), commonly called Gunkanjima (軍艦島; meaning Battleship Island), is an abandoned island of Nagasaki, lying about 15 kilometers (9 miles) from the center of the city. It is one of 505 uninhabited islands in Nagasaki Prefecture. The island's most notable features are its abandoned concrete buildings, undisturbed except by nature, and the surrounding sea wall. While the island is a symbol of the rapid industrialization of Japan, it is also a reminder of Japanese war crimes as a site of forced labour prior to and during the Second World War.
The 6.3-hectare (16-acre) island was known for its undersea coal mines, established in 1887, which operated during the industrialization of Japan. The island reached a peak population of 5,259 in 1959. In 1974, with the coal reserves nearing depletion, the mine was closed and all of the residents departed soon after, leaving the island effectively abandoned for the following three decades. Interest in the island re-emerged in the 2000s on account of its undisturbed historic ruins, and it gradually became a tourist attraction. Certain collapsed exterior walls have since been restored, and travel to Hashima was re-opened to tourists on April 22, 2009. Increasing interest in the island resulted in an initiative for its protection as a site of industrial heritage.
The coal mine of the island was formally approved as a UNESCO World Heritage Site in July 2015, as part of Japan's Sites of Japan's Meiji Industrial Revolution: Iron and Steel, Shipbuilding and Coal Mining.
- "Battleship island – a symbol of Japan's progress or reminder of its dark history?". The Guardian. 2015-07-03. Retrieved 2015-09-12.
- "Dark history: A visit to Japan's creepiest island". CNN. 2013-06-13. Retrieved 2015-09-17.
- "UNESCO World Heritage Centre - New Inscribed Properties (2015)". Whc.unesco.org. Retrieved 1 January 2018.
Abandoned island about 15 kilometres from Nagasaki, Japan
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