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Japan’s Ghost Island

By Linda Tancs

Less than 10 miles from the city of Nagasaki, Japan, Hashima is one of 505 uninhabited islands in Nagasaki Prefecture. It wasn’t always that way. Once home to more than 5,000 inhabitants during Japan’s coal mining heyday, the island’s abandoned concrete apartments are emblematic of a forgotten age and impart an eerie feel to the place. Also known as Battleship Island owing to its silhouette, it opened to tourism in 2009. The boat ride takes 30 minutes, and walks are limited to defined paths due to the site’s damage and decay.

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