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Saturday, January 26, 2008

Gunkanjima: The Abandoned City

"Battleship Island" is an English translation of the Japanese nickname for Hashima Island, Gunkanjima. The island's nickname came from its apparent resemblance to a battleship. It also is known as the Ghost Island.
The island was populated from 1887 to 1974 as a coal mining facility. In 1959, its population density was 835 people per hectare (83,500 people/km^2) for the whole island, or 1,391 per hectare (139,100 people/km^2) for the residential district, one of the highest population density ever recorded worldwide.
As petroleum replaced coal in Japan in the 1960s, coal mines began shutting down all over the country, and Hashima's mines were no exception. Mitsubishi officially announced the closing of the mine in 1974, and today it is empty and bare, which is why it's called the Ghost Island. Travel to Hashima is currently prohibited.


The island is totally deserted nowadays, but evidence of a previous human life can still be seen. Check out some of these amazing pictures of the island:

Photos are taken from Archibase.Net, you can check the rest of them here.

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