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Is Hiroshima Safe?

Hiroshima is generally safe for tourists, with low violent crime rates. However, be vigilant against petty crimes like bag-snatching. The city has a dark history from the 1945 atomic bombing, so visitors should be respectful when exploring related sites. Natural disasters like typhoons and earthquakes pose some risk, necessitating preparedness. Overall, Hiroshima offers a unique cultural experience for travelers exercising reasonable precautions.

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Safety & Security

Hiroshima is generally a safe destination for travelers, with low crime rates and a stable political environment. However, it's essential to exercise caution and be aware of potential risks.

  • Petty Crime: While violent crime is rare, petty crimes like pickpocketing and bag snatching can occur in crowded areas and on public transportation. Remain vigilant and keep valuables secure.

  • Scams: Be wary of common travel scams, such as overcharging by taxis or vendors, or individuals offering unsolicited services. Stick to official sources and reputable establishments.

  • Natural Disasters: Hiroshima is located in an earthquake-prone region. Familiarize yourself with emergency procedures and follow instructions from local authorities in case of seismic activity or tsunamis.

  • Terrorism: While the risk of terrorism is low, it's advisable to stay vigilant, especially in crowded areas and during major events. Monitor local news and follow the advice of authorities.

  • Civil Unrest: Hiroshima is generally peaceful, but it's wise to avoid any demonstrations or protests that may arise, as they can sometimes turn violent.

  • Road Safety: Exercise caution when crossing streets, as pedestrian rights may not be strictly observed. Use designated crosswalks and follow traffic signals.

Health & Medical

Hiroshima is generally a safe destination for travelers in terms of health risks. However, it's essential to take some precautions and be aware of potential concerns.

  • Vaccinations: Ensure routine vaccinations are up-to-date, including those for COVID-19. No additional vaccinations are typically required for travel to Japan.

  • Air Pollution: While air quality in Hiroshima is generally good, it can occasionally experience elevated levels of particulate matter, especially during the spring and winter months. Those with respiratory conditions should monitor air quality reports.

  • Medical Facilities: Hiroshima has excellent medical facilities, including several major hospitals equipped to handle emergencies and provide care for international visitors. However, medical costs can be high, so travelers should ensure they have adequate travel insurance coverage.

  • Insect-Borne Diseases: The risk of insect-borne diseases like dengue fever and malaria is low in Hiroshima. However, travelers should take precautions against mosquito bites, especially during the warmer months.

  • Food and Water Safety: Tap water is safe to drink in Hiroshima, and food hygiene standards are generally high. However, travelers should exercise caution when consuming food from street vendors or unfamiliar establishments.

It's advisable to consult a healthcare professional before traveling to discuss any specific health concerns or requirements based on individual circumstances.

Natural Disasters

Hiroshima, located in western Japan, is prone to natural disasters due to its geographical location and climate. While the city has implemented robust disaster prevention measures, travelers should be aware of the potential risks.

  • Earthquakes: Japan lies along the Pacific Ring of Fire, making it susceptible to earthquakes. Hiroshima has experienced several earthquakes in the past, including the Great Hanshin Earthquake in 1995, which caused significant damage in nearby areas. Travelers should familiarize themselves with earthquake safety procedures.

  • Typhoons: The typhoon season in Japan typically runs from June to November, with Hiroshima being at risk of strong winds, heavy rainfall, and potential flooding. Travelers should monitor weather updates and follow instructions from local authorities during typhoon warnings.

  • Tsunamis: Although less common, Hiroshima's coastal location makes it vulnerable to tsunamis, particularly in the event of a significant offshore earthquake. Travelers should be aware of evacuation routes and follow instructions from local authorities in case of a tsunami warning.

  • Volcanic Activity: While Hiroshima itself does not have active volcanoes, the nearby Sakurajima volcano on Kyushu Island has been active in recent years. Travelers should stay informed about any potential volcanic activity that could disrupt travel plans or pose health risks.

It's essential for travelers to stay updated on weather forecasts, follow local advisories, and familiarize themselves with emergency procedures. Hiroshima has a well-established disaster response system, and authorities are proactive in issuing warnings and providing guidance to ensure the safety of residents and visitors.


Hiroshima boasts an efficient and well-connected public transportation system, making it easy for travelers to navigate the city. The city's tram network, operated by Hiroshima Electric Railway, is a convenient and affordable way to explore major attractions. Additionally, buses and taxis are readily available, providing reliable transportation options.

  • Tram Network: The tram system is a popular choice among locals and visitors alike, offering frequent services and covering most tourist destinations. It's an eco-friendly and cost-effective way to get around.

  • Buses: Hiroshima's bus network is extensive, with routes connecting various parts of the city and surrounding areas. Buses are air-conditioned and equipped with electronic displays, making them user-friendly for international travelers.

  • Taxis: While more expensive than public transportation, taxis in Hiroshima are a safe and comfortable option, especially for shorter distances or late-night travel. Major taxi companies have English-speaking staff to assist foreign visitors.

  • Road Safety: Hiroshima's roads are generally well-maintained and follow strict traffic regulations. However, pedestrians should exercise caution when crossing streets, as drivers may not always yield the right of way.

  • Rental Services: For those preferring more flexibility, rental cars and bicycles are available from various providers, allowing travelers to explore Hiroshima at their own pace while adhering to local traffic rules.

Cultural Norms

Hiroshima, a city with a profound historical significance, offers visitors a unique opportunity to immerse themselves in Japanese culture while paying respect to its past. When exploring this city, it's essential to be mindful of certain cultural sensitivities and customs.

  • Peace Memorial Park and Museum: This iconic site serves as a poignant reminder of the atomic bombing in 1945. Visitors should maintain a respectful demeanor and refrain from disruptive behavior within the park and museum premises.

  • Religious Sites: Hiroshima is home to numerous shrines and temples, such as the Itsukushima Shrine and Mitaki Temple. Modest attire, removing shoes when required, and refraining from loud conversations are expected when visiting these sacred places.

  • Hiroshima-style Okonomiyaki: This savory pancake dish is a local specialty. When dining at okonomiyaki restaurants, it's customary to avoid sticking chopsticks vertically into the food, as this gesture is associated with funerary rituals.

  • Commemorative Events: Hiroshima hosts various events and ceremonies to honor the victims of the atomic bombing. Visitors should be mindful of these occasions and respectfully observe any ongoing commemorations or memorials.

By embracing these cultural sensitivities, travelers can fully appreciate the rich heritage and resilience of Hiroshima while fostering a deeper understanding and respect for the local customs.

Emergency Services

Emergency services in Hiroshima are generally reliable and well-equipped to handle various situations. The city has a comprehensive network of emergency responders, including police, fire departments, and ambulance services.

  • Emergency Medical Services: Hiroshima has several major hospitals and clinics that provide emergency medical care. Many of these facilities have English-speaking staff or interpreters available to assist foreign travelers.

  • Fire and Rescue Services: The Hiroshima City Fire Bureau operates numerous fire stations throughout the city, ensuring prompt response times in case of fires, accidents, or other emergencies.

  • Police Services: The Hiroshima Prefectural Police maintain a strong presence in the city and are trained to handle a wide range of situations, including crimes, accidents, and public disturbances. They have dedicated tourist assistance units to help visitors in need.

  • Tourist Assistance Services: Several organizations, such as the Hiroshima International Center and the Hiroshima Convention & Visitors Bureau, offer assistance to foreign travelers, including interpreting services and guidance during emergencies.

While emergency services in Hiroshima are generally reliable, it's always advisable for travelers to exercise caution, follow local laws and regulations, and familiarize themselves with emergency procedures and contact information before their trip.

Frequently Asked Questions

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Is Hiroshima safe for tourists?

Hiroshima is generally safe for tourists. However, visitors should exercise caution in crowded areas and be aware of their surroundings. It's advisable to follow local laws and customs, and avoid carrying valuables in plain sight. Hiroshima has a low crime rate, but petty theft can occur.

Is Hiroshima safe for solo female travelers?

Solo female travelers can feel relatively safe in Hiroshima. However, it's recommended to take standard precautions, such as avoiding isolated areas at night and being cautious when interacting with strangers. Public transportation is safe and reliable, making it easier for solo travelers to navigate the city.

Is Hiroshima safe for families?

Hiroshima is a family-friendly destination with various attractions suitable for children, such as the Peace Memorial Park and Museum. Families should be mindful of the solemn nature of some sites and prepare children accordingly. Public transportation and facilities are generally accessible for families.

Is Hiroshima LGBTQ+ friendly?

While same-sex relationships are legal in Japan, LGBTQ+ rights and acceptance vary across the country. Hiroshima is relatively progressive, but public displays of affection may draw unwanted attention. Same-sex marriage is not legally recognized, and discrimination protections are limited.

Do you need a visa to go to Hiroshima?

Most visitors from Western countries, including the United States, Canada, and the European Union, can travel to Japan for up to 90 days without a visa for tourism purposes. However, a valid passport is required, and visitors must comply with entry and exit regulations.

Can you drink tap water in Hiroshima?

Tap water in Hiroshima is safe to drink and meets international standards. However, some visitors may prefer bottled water due to the different taste or as a precaution. Restaurants and hotels typically serve filtered or bottled water.

What is the currency in Hiroshima?

The Japanese yen (JPY) is the official currency in Hiroshima. Major credit cards are widely accepted in hotels, restaurants, and shops, but it's advisable to carry some cash for smaller purchases or emergencies.

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