View Full Version : GUNKANJIMA (Japan): the forbidden island

11-06-2010, 08:05 PM
I found the article of this forbidden island from the 10 most amazing ghost towns (http://www.oddee.com/item_96462.aspx). I got goose bumps when look at the pictures. I think this should be the number 1. Wanna try to get in? It reminds me of detective stories, like Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None or one of detective conan's which title I forget. What if yakuza kidnapp me, and drop me there from a helicopter, I could be alive, but for how long?

This island is one among 505 uninhabited islands in the Nagasaki Prefecture of Japan about 15 kilometers from Nagasaki itself. It is also known as "Gunkan-jima" or Battleship Island thanks to its high sea walls. It began in 1890 when a company called Mitsubishi bought the island and began a project to retrieve coal from the bottom of the sea. This attracted much attention, and in 1916 they were forced to build Japan’s first large concrete building on the island. A block of apartments that would both accommodate the seas of workers and protect them from hurricanes.

In 1959, population had swelled, and boasted a density of 835 people per hectare for the whole island (1,391 per hectare for the residential district) - one of the highest population densities ever recorded worldwide. As petroleum replaced coal in Japan in the 1960’s, coal mines began shutting down all over the country, and Hashima’s mines were no exception. In 1974 Mitsubishi officially announced the closing of the mine, and today it is empty and bare, with travel currently prohibited. The island was the location for the 2003 film ‘Battle Royale II’ and inspired the final level of popular Asian videogame "Killer7".

From other source, it was closed for public since 1974-2009. But now it is open for tourist.

pictures are here:

11-07-2010, 08:29 PM
Yeah that island is a great one. It inspired a lot of the limbo scenes for the movie "Inception."
Thanks for sharing these pics!

Mike Woodfin
11-08-2010, 03:40 AM
It is my understanding that the Japanese authorities have realized the tourist possibilities of the island and have started to do tours. I would love to go on a photo safari there however, the trip to Japan is a bit out of my league.

11-08-2010, 06:18 PM
It reminds me of detective stories, like Agatha Christie's And Then There Were None or one of detective conan's which title I forget.

It reminds me of something from a zombie apocalypse movie.

11-27-2010, 06:20 PM
Thought I would share this. My friend sent it to me after I sent him this thread.


Big Sandy
11-28-2010, 06:37 AM
Well, that's a hoot. I would have liked to have heard more about how they got the coal. Is there a mine entrance on the island?