This picturesque port city is located on the northwest coast of Kyushu, enjoying a warm, subtropical climate and an enviable position on a large natural harbor. Once a fishing village, then a bustling hub of international trade, Nagasaki is best known for its role in WWII as the second city to be targeted for a nuclear strike. Though much of the city was destroyed, today it is a flourishing cosmopolitan hub, rich in history and culture.
Thanks to centuries of trade with Portugal, Nagasaki is home to an enclave of Christianity, with Catholic and Protestant churches on the tourist itinerary. It also features a pocket of European architecture - Glover Garden - another holdover from its trading days. Naturally, the city boasts its own stunning collection of temples and shrines, and adds the anomalous Hashima Island - an abandoned former mining outpost - to its list of things to see. It goes without saying that a trip to Nagasaki is not complete without paying tribute to its past, with a trip to one of the many war memorials located around the city.
A handpicked selection of experiences endorsed by our experts. If you can’t see what you’re looking for, let us know, as our extensive network of local contacts can open many doors.
Visit the singular point of trade for Nagasaki during the “isolationist” Edo period, when contact with foreigners was banned. This fan-shaped artificial island was where Dutch merchants were contained while trading goods. Full restoration of the site is still underway.
Hop on a boat out to this abandoned island, established in 1887 as part of Nagasaki’s undersea coal-mining operations. Once the most densely populated place on Earth, the island – also known as Gunkanjima (Battleship Island) – is now completely deserted, and enjoys protection as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum
Learn about the dropping of the atomic bomb in Nagasaki, about life before the bomb and the devastation of its aftermath. The museum also covers the history of nuclear armament, and aims to impress visitors with a visceral sense of the impact of nuclear warfare.
Nagasaki Peace Memorial Hall for the Atomic Bomb Victims
Pay tribute to the victims of the atomic bomb at this commemorative monument. The memorial hall includes memoirs and photographs; as well as a library, information corners, research rooms and an illuminated glass monument.
Take a trip to Chinatown – one of Japan’s largest – where Nagasaki’s Chinese population was confined during the restrictive Edo period. Today, the area is home to a vibrant shopping strip festooned with lanterns, and home to countless restaurants.
Stroll the tranquil grounds of Suwa Shrine, the principle Shinto shrine in Nagasaki. Built on a mountainside, it comprises 227 steps to its main buildings and two “stop lions” to which visitors can pray if they wish to cease a bad habit. The shrine was originally built to combat conversion to Christianity in the Edo period, and today hosts many of the city’s festivals.
Explore in-depth information, experiences and highlights by navigating to specific regions using the links below on the right.
- Iya Valley
- Izu Peninsula
- Kotohira & Takamatsu
- Lake Shikotsu
- Lake Toya
- Matsuyama & Imabari
- Naoshima & Seto Inland Sea Islands
- Yakushima Island
Garden Terrace Nagasaki Hotel & Resort
This grand, stylish, award-winning hotel is a Nagasaki centerpiece. Clean, crisp decor takes modernity to the next level, alongside the hotel’s playful light displays. Room choices come in the form of the Garden Suite, Ocean Suite, Tower Suite, and Japanese Suite, all of which feature LCD TVs, iPod docks, and balconies with exquisite views of the harbor. Guests may choose to dine at any of the hotel’s three restaurants, from the French restaurant, Forest, to the Japanese Teppanyaki and kaiseki restaurant, Akizuki, and finally the sushi restaurant, Tenku. Those looking for activities will be pleased with the hotel’s open-air pool, which is especially picturesque at night as it enjoys stunning views of the waterfront, the chic club lounge, and the hotel’s own private bathroom with adjoining sauna. The airport is less than an hour away by car, and there is a JR station a short drive from the hotel.
Though far from Nagasaki’s city center, Hansuiryo enjoys lush natural surroundings from its location tucked away in the countryside. This means guests trade convenience for a feeling of being away from the tourist crowds, secluded in the midst of Unzen National Park. What’s more, there is a feeling of expansive space here, with only 14 villas built over an expanse of 65,600-square-feet. Villas have been built in the sukiya teahouse architectural style of simple elegance, surrounded by a lush, delicately-manicured Japanese garden. The restaurant serves up scrumptious Kyoto cuisine made from fresh, local ingredients. Guests may take a dip in the on-site onsen said to be over a millenium old, and highly anti-bacterial.
Designed by famed architect Junzo Yoshimura, on his quest for the ultimate comfort hotel, this traditional Japanese ryokan is large and historic. The rooms have been designed in keeping with very traditional Japanese styles - simple, clean, walls with tatami mat floors, and floor seating. We recommend the Hanare rooms. The hotel is engulfed by lush, natural surroundings, with handmade water structures alongside verdant gardens. Guests will enjoy the hotel’s sauna and spa tub. The on-site Japanese bar has free-flow alcohol option for non-stop glasses of cold beer, sake, or whatever is preferred, to accompany dinner. Located in Saga Prefecture, the hotel is a 45-minute drive from Nagasaki’s city center.
Japan Goes Well With
With Remote Lands you'll travel with people who have made Asia the solitary focus of their own lifelong adventure. As our guest, you'll discover Asia on a journey that is completely, authentically your own, adapted from our own remarkable experiences and adventures over the years.
With Remote Lands you'll travel with people who have made Asia the solitary focus of their own lifelong adventure. As our guest, in the continent that our north American founders Catherine and Jay have adored and explored for decades, you'll discover Asia on a journey that is completely, authentically your own, adapted from our own remarkable experiences and adventures over the years.
An Asia-focused magazine brought to you by Remote Lands - a platform for adventure, luxury, and authenticity from experts and explorers around the continent.
The Japan Meteorological Corporation released the 2018 cherry blossom forecast recently, and there’s not much time left to book your flower-laden trip to the Land of the Rising Sun.
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