Set on the shores of Japan’s Honshu Island, Hiroshima is a modern city with a rich, dark history. As the first city in history to be hit by an atomic bomb, Hiroshima was almost entirely destroyed in August 1945.
But the city was gradually rebuilt, only to become one of the friendliest on Earth! With a lasting memory of the havoc that was caused, Hiroshima is now dedicated to peace. It’s a beautiful, forward-facing city, with a rich and welcoming culture. The nightlife is amongst the liveliest in Japan, and the food scene is incredible!
Embarking on a Hiroshima tour is a great way to become familiar with the city, its culture and its surroundings. So we’ve compiled our favorites below.
• The 21 Best Tours in Hiroshima •
- 7 – 12 hours
- Explore the best-bits of Hiroshima and Miyajima in one day
- Stop by some of the most iconic landmarks in the area
Discover the city of Hiroshima and explore its landmarks on a full-day, in-depth tour! This tour is a great all-rounder, taking you to all of the best bits of the city in one day. You’ll also get to visit the neighboring island of Miyajima!
The tour passes by and stops at some of the most iconic landmarks in the area. Check out Hiroshima Castle, Peace Memorial Park, and Atomic Bomb Dome to name a few! Enjoy a local lunch and ride the ferry to Miyajima where you’ll find the Itsukushima Shrine and Daisho-in Temple.
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- 3 hours
- The Saijo district is home to a number of sake breweries, that produce some of the best sake on the planet!
- Taste the sake and learn all about how the drink is brewed as you explore
Sake is Japan’s national drink, and certainly a favorite amongst the county’s locals! Home to a number of sake breweries, Hiroshima is one of the best places in the country to taste it!
Set in the Saijo district of Hiroshima, this 3-hour tour takes you through local streets and stops by at 4-6 local sake breweries! Learn about the brewing process and sample some of the incredible local sake!
Need more info? Here’s a rundown of things to do in Hiroshima to fill your time there!
- 35 minutes
- Admire the stunning Hiroshima Castle from a unique vantage point
- Learn the history of the castle and spot the famous carp in the waters
Set in the center of the city, surrounded by an expansive moat, Hiroshima castle is a stunning example of Japanese architecture, and an important landmark in the city. Sometimes called Carp Castle, it is known for the myriad of carp that swim in the surrounding waters.
Admire the castle from the water, in a traditional Japanese style boat! The scenery is beautiful, particularly around April when the cherry blossoms are in bloom!
- 2 ½ hours
- Learn all about Hiroshima’s history, with a focus on the atomic bomb and World War II
- Admire beautiful gardens, soak up some views, and explore historic sites
Discover Hiroshima’s rich and dark history on a walking tour of the city’s historic sights. Start off the tour with a walk through the stunning garden at Shukkei-en, before heading to Hiroshima Castle.
Explore the archaic site and learn about the ancient lords that once called it home! After the castle, make your way to the Atomic Bomb Dome, where you’ll uncover rich details of the horrific event that unfolded on the 6th of August 1945.
- 5 ½ hours
- Explore the stunning ancient island of Miyajima
- See some of Japan’s most iconic sights and enjoy amazing views
The island of Miyajima, just off the coast of Hiroshima has been an important spiritual space for many centuries. It is now an official, cultural World Heritage Site!
The island is home to the gorgeous Itsukushima Shrine, which is considered one of the most famous scenic spots in Japan (Japan Sankyo). After a ferry ride to the island, you’ll get to admire the Shrine and its stunning surroundings! Next, take a hike up to the island’s highest point, and enjoy unparalleled views.
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- 3 hours
- A great way to experience an authentic side of Hiroshima
- Enjoy fabulous flavors and discover some of the city’s hidden gems
Discover downtown Hiroshima’s vibrant food scene on a fun-filled walking tour of the area! Walking through the streets of downtown Hiroshima, you’ll start to understand why it’s considered one of the friendliest cities on Earth. The atmosphere is wonderful and the locals are incredibly welcoming!
You’ll stop at four local eateries as you stroll the streets, tasting your way through the city’s downtown area. Enjoy local favorites such as Okonomiyaki and tsukemen before indulging in some dessert!
- 1 ½ hours
- Learn the history of Hiroshima’s signature dish as you try your hand at cooking it
- A fun and immersive experience with a social dynamic
Hiroshima has a thriving local food scene, but the city’s specialty is no doubt okonomiyaki. This savory snack is somewhat like a pancake with a Japanese flair! During this activity, an experienced chef will teach you the art of making okonomiyaki as you follow along and make your own!
After cooking and loading up your okonomiyaki with fillings, you’ll get to eat it, and enjoy the local flavors!
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- 2 – 6 hours
- Fully customizable tour, from activities to transport method to length!
- Get to know Hiroshima with a passionate local
There’s no better way to get acquainted with a city than having a local friend show you the ropes. But unfortunately, we’re not all lucky enough to have a friend living in Hiroshima. That’s where this tour comes in!
After discussing your tastes and preferences, you’ll get matched up with a friendly local. These passionate guides know the city inside out, and will craft a tour tailored perfectly to your interests!
- 3 hours
- A fun and immersive tour for patrons of all experience levels
- Paddleboards, wetsuits, and equipment are all provided
See the torii gate at Itsukushima Shrine up close in a completely unique way! The UNESCO World Heritage Site is an incredibly popular travel destination, particularly the floating torii gate!
SUPing, or stand up paddleboarding, involves standing up on a large buoyant surfboard and paddling along the surface of the water. It’s incredibly fun and peaceful, and allows you to see the torii gate in the most immersive way possible!
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- 1 ½ hours
- Learn how to make and drink traditional Japanese tea
- Don a kimono and try your hand at calligraphy
Experience a traditional Japanese tea ceremony with experienced locals, in the stunning Tokujuji Temple. Kick off the tour by getting kitted out in a kimono and Obi belt to really amplify the experience. Next, learn about the art of calligraphy and practice writing your name!
The highlight of the experience is a 5 step tea ceremony, where you’ll become acquainted with the tradition. You’ll learn how to make the tea and drink it in the correct way, before enjoying a peaceful walk through lush Japanese gardens.
- 45 – 190 minutes
- A fun way to experience the beautiful island of Miyajima
- Explore famous spiritual sites including temples and shrines
Miyajima is overflowing with gorgeous sites and landmarks, with a predominantly spiritual focus. The island is home to a number of shrines, temples, and other spiritual sites, and one of the best ways to explore it is by rickshaw!
You’ll get to admire the Itsukushima Shrine and the famous red torii gate, as well as exploring temples and other shrines.
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#12 – Bar Crawl and Food Tour
- 3 hours
- A great way to get familiar with Hiroshima’s nightlife and izakaya culture
- Try local foods and locally produced drinks with an experienced guide
Experience Hiroshima’s vibrant nightlife district and taste the flavors of the city! This bar-hopping tour takes you on an adventure to three of Hiroshima’s coolest bars. Start at a local izakaya where you can sip on drinks while a chef prepares Okonomiyaki right in front of you!
Next, you’ll bar-hop through the area in true local fashion, trying traditional foods along the way. Learn about the local sake scene and pair the drink with some delicious food!
- 9 hours
- An incredibly beautiful natural landscape a short drive from Hiroshima
- An experienced guide will take you through the best bits
Enjoy the stunning natural beauty and historical landmarks of Sandankyo Valley on a guided tour from Hiroshima. The valley is a perfect nature escape from the bustle of Hiroshima, fully equipped with abundant plant life, waterfalls, and rock formations.
Through a series of boat rides and short hikes, you’ll get to explore the best the valley has to offer! The scenery is peppered with traditional Japanese buildings, and transfers are included.
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- 2 hours
- Learn about and try calligraphy with the guidance of an experienced instructor
- Take the brush you used and a folding fan home with you as souvenirs!
Japanese calligraphy is a traditional visual art whereby the artists writes using a brush and ink. This immersive experience allows you to become acquainted with Japanese calligraphy and learn the skills of the art form!
Your instructor will teach you the foundations of Japanese calligraphy, and you’ll be able to try your hand at it. Decorate a folding fan with kanji characters, and take it home with you when the tour is over!
- 3 ½ hours
- Experience a traditional Japanese performing art
- Enjoy a local dinner and some authentic sake
Kagura shows weave music, dance, and striking costumes to create an incredible spectacle. And they can only be seen in Hiroshima! The ancient art form has been performed since the 8th-century, in honor of the Shinto gods.
Learn about the history of Kagura before being entranced by the ancient rhythms and striking visuals. Lastly, head to the city’s nightlife district for some local food and sake!
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- 3 hours
- A fun and peaceful way to explore the stunning landscapes of Tomonoura
- Explore the area’s rich history and nature
Tomonoura is widely considered to be one of the most beautiful spots in Japan, and it’s located within easy driving distance from Hiroshima! Set off in a comfortable sea kayak and explore everything this stunning area has to offer.
You’ll wind past desolate beaches, historic sites, and hidden corners that can only be reached by kayak! The area is also famously where the film ‘Wolverine’ was set!
- 5 ½ hours
- A fun activity with stunning views
- Tasty food, a bathhouse visit, and a sunset experience!
Enjoy a round of Japanese Gold and a tasty BBQ, with views out over a series of islands in the Seto Inland Sea. The golf course is gorgeous, and playing is highly entertaining!
Before the golf, you’ll get to admire the breathtaking views from a hilltop terrace, while enjoying finely cooked BBQ food. Lastly, make a stop at an authentic Japanese bathhouse!
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- 3 hours
- An amazing way to experience the city and its landmarks
- Learn about Hiroshima’s past and the atomic bomb from an experienced guide
Cycling is an amazing way to experience the sights and sounds of Hiroshima! It allows you to be fully immersed in the city’s atmosphere and enjoy unobstructed views of its landmarks.
This tour takes you on an adventure of discovery, with a focus on the city’s peaceful agenda and dark history. Cycle around Peace Memorial Park and see the Atomic Bomb Dome, amongst others. Your local guide will share stories, facts, and histories along the way!
- 2 hours
- Experience the Japanese martial art of Aikido
- Located in central Hiroshima, making for easy access
Aikido is a self-defense martial art that was developed in the early 20th-century. It involves controlling an attacker’s movements with as little effort as possible, in order to escape dangerous situations.
Your instructor will teach the foundations of Aikido, and you’ll get to try your hand at swordsmanship! The experience is fun and informative.
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- 30 minutes
- A fun experience involving a traditional Japanese sport
- Learn the basics and history of kyudo and shoot arrows at a target
Learn the art of kyudo, an ancient form of Japanese archery! Kyudo revolves around respecting the archery equipment through a series of movements and is said to bring focus to the mind and body.
You’ll be dressed in a traditional kyudo uniform and taught the basics of the sport by your instructor. Once you’ve developed a solid understanding, you’ll get to shoot some arrows!
- 2 hours
- An insightful window into the world of Oyster harvesting
- Stunning scenery and views of the Itsukushima Shrine
Head out into the waters that surround Itsukushima Shrine on an oyster harvesting workboat! This tour takes you on a fascinating journey, as you experience first hand the process of harvesting oysters.
Watch the workers as they skillfully perform their jobs, and admire the stunning scenery along the way! You’ll also get close up to the Itsukushima Shrine and get to see the activities of Shimada Suisban’s oyster factory.
FAQs about Hiroshima Tours
We’re sure you have some questions that you want answered before you head off to Hiroshima! So we’ve done our best to answer those that we hear most often.
How do I book a Hiroshima tour?
The best way to book a tour in Hiroshima is through an online activities site. There are several great options to choose from, but our favorite is definitely Get Your Guide.
The platform is easy to use and offers a great range of tours!
What should I pack for a tour in Hiroshima?
Most Hiroshima tours take place outdoors, so the weather is an important consideration. Hiroshima’s weather varies dramatically between its seasons, so it’s important that you pack weather-wise clothing!
In summer, you’ll want light, airy clothes, a hat, sunglasses, and sunscreen. In winter, you’ll likely want a warm coat and a scarf!
How much do tours in Hiroshima typically cost?
The cost of tours in Hiroshima varies greatly depending on the type of experience and its length. The average cost of our recommended tours is around $75 USD, with the cheapest costing around $15 USD, and the most expensive setting you back about $150 USD.
How long do tours in Hiroshima last?
The length of Hiroshima tours also varies significantly depending on the type of experience, and how far from the city it takes place. The longest Hiroshima day trips can last up to around 12 hours, while some of the tours in the city last just half an hour.
Closing Thoughts on Hiroshima Tourism
Hiroshima has a lot more to offer than many give it credit for. It’s a misunderstood city, that’s unfairly associated with its darkest hour. Today, the city is a vibrant hub of activity, surrounded by spectacular natural beauty and overflowing with a lively culture!
The tours we’ve recommended are a great way to dive headfirst into this amazing city and its surroundings. There’s so much to see and so much to learn, and having a guide by your side can really enhance your explorations!
We hope this guide to our favorite Hiroshima tours has offered you some options and ideas. But most of all, we hope you have an amazing trip!
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