Gunkanjima | Hashima Island, Japan

Markus and I are a fan of films, which makes sense since Markus is an animator. When we travel, for some reason, I always tend to look for filming locations. We've been to Pemberely, Hogwarts, and 221B Baker Street. When I was planning our trip to Japan, Skyfall was just released in the theaters. When I saw the film, I remember being intrigued by the abandoned island that was featured. I've always wanted to explore a ghost town or an abandoned theme park. After a bit of research, I learned that it was in Japan. So, I made sure to include Hashima Island on the list.

Hashima Island is known by so many different names such as Gunkanjima, Battleship Island and Ghost Island. It's located off the coast of Nagasaki. The island was primarily used as a coal mining facility from 1887 to 1974. It was bought by Mitsubishi in 1880 and people lived and worked on the island. In 1974 the mine was closed and Hashima has been abandoned since then. Due to several typhoons, the buildings have taken a beating and the island was closed off to visitors. It's popularity has risen in the past few years and it was decided to open Hashima for supervised tours.

Markus and I used to watch a lot of those "ghost hunter" like shows. I'm really intrigued by places that are supposedly haunted and for some reason always end up watching shows like that on TV. I was a huge fan of Unsolved Mysteries when I was a kid, so I think this fascination stems from this. What can I say? I'm a bit of a weirdo, but at least it makes for interesting posts and travels!

I was a bit sad that we weren't allowed to freely explore the island, but I can understand the reasoning behind it. The tour took us to three different spots on the island. The tour was completely in Japanese so Markus just wandered around. It was also extremely hot that day, so by the time we reached our third stop, I was pretty over it. Despite the heat and not understanding the tour, I enjoyed being able to visit the island. It was really cool to see something so unique and unlike any other place. Maybe Markus and I will start searching for more abandoned places we could explore on our own.