Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
About Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park
A beautiful park space close to the site of the atomic bombing, built as a memorial to those killed and dedicated to world peace.
Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park is a large memorial park dedicated to the victims of the atomic bombing on the 6th of August, 1945. Covering 12 hectares, it sits on an island between the Honkawa and Motoyasu Rivers. The park is a central feature of the Hiroshima Downtown area, and can be reached easily on foot or public transport.
Close to the hypocenter of the explosion, the park and surrounding area was destroyed in the bombing. It was decided after the war to build a park in the area as a memorial to peace, and it was completed in April 1954.
At the centre of the park sits the Cenotaph for the A-Bomb Victims, also knows as the Memorial Monument for Hiroshima, City of Peace. The monument is an arch covering a stone chest containing the names of all victims of the bombing, regardless of nationality; 296,684 names as of August 2015. The cenotaph reads “Let all the souls here rest in peace, for we shall not repeat the evil.”
To the south sits the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, and to the east the National Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims.
Slightly north of the cenotaph burns the Flame of Peace, lit on the 1st of August 1964 in hope for a world without nuclear weapons. The flame will continue to burn until nuclear weapons are abolished worldwide.
Further north is the Children’s Peace Monument, built in 1958 honour all the children who died as a result of the bombing. The memorial was constructed following the death of Sasaki Sadako, a young girl known worldwide from the story of Sadako and the Thousand Paper Cranes. Exposed to the radiation of the bombing around two years of age, Sadako died of leukaemia a decade later. Each year, tens of thousands of origami cranes are placed at the memorial as a prayer for peace.
A little further north again is the Peace Bell, a gentle sound which rings out over the park. Installed with the hope to abolish nuclear weapons and bring about world peace, the bell’s surface shows a world map without national borders, symbolising a single, unified world. Please take a moment to strike the bell and reflect on world peace.
To the north, across the Motoyasu River sits the Hiroshima Genbaku Dome.