Nagasaki Sightseeing & Attractions
Our top picks of things to see and do
Gunkanjima (Hashima Island)
Usually only seen in Hollywood action films, few people have the opportunity to visit a real live, (well not really alive) dilapidated and abandoned industrial island. It wasn't until 2009 when the city of Nagasaki opened access to Gunkanjima, a small coal mine island which was abandoned in 1974 when the mine was closed due to declining production. The island has been abandoned and abused by the elements since that time and has taken on the look of a post apocalyptic city due to decay.
Travelers will be interested to know that this abandoned island is the island that inspired the 2012 Bond film: Skyfall, however filming was done in England with a mix of CGI and a partially recreated version of the island in a sound studio.
Presently there are tours (at the Nagasaki Ferry Terminal, the company is called: Yamasa Kaiun) for specific parts of the island, away from the buildings to prevent injury.
Nagasaki Peace Park
Take a walk through the Peace Park and stand in the very location where the atomic bomb dropped on August 9th, 1945 in World War II.
Peace Park serves as a reminder of this event and the tens of thousands of residents who died. The park has several monuments and statues which promote and urge the concept of world peace.
After many hard years working in Hollywood Danny Glover finally got his tribute, in the way of a garden built in his honor in Nagasaki Japan. Well not quite.
Perhaps more of a tourist attraction for the local Japanese than foreigners, Glover Park features three extravagant and beautiful mansions of former British merchants of Nagasaki.
After Japan had ended its seclusion policy Westerners were allowed back in and subsequently built residences in specific 'foreigner' sanctioned areas. Glover Garden is positioned at the top of hill Minami-Yamate, which gives it a brilliant view of the city and landscapes below.
Noticeably different from other temples you've seen in Japan, the Sofukuji gets its different design from the Chinese immigrants (Fujian Province) who built the temple in 1629. The temple is surprisingly rich in treasures and cultural assets, numbering over 20 such.
The temple is strikingly red and very Chinese in appearance (as would be expected) and features an impressive Buddha statue.
Confucian Shrine (Koshi-byo)
Nagasaki's strong connection with the Chinese is easily found throughout the city, especially with the presence of the only Confucian monument built outside of main land china - The Confucian Shrine (Koshi-byo).
The temple was built quite recently in 1893 and renovated in 1982. Inside you can find the Historical Museum of China where you can take a time out from Japan and learn about the history of the country from whence Japan's people came from originally.
It has been said by many and can bare saying some more, Nagasaki's Chinatown is certainly the most 'Chinese feeling' of all of Japan's Chinatowns (Others being Yokohama and Kobe).
Some say the reason for this is the fact that during Japans Isolation period Nagasaki was the only port open to foreign trade with China. Be that as it may the explorer will find a great deal of fun and excitement wandering the streets of Nagasaki's Chinatown, following the aromas in the air, haggling with sharp street vendors or admiring the bright and energetic decor.