Japan Data

G7 Summit Boosts Visitor Numbers at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum


The number of visitors to Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum has already set a new record in fiscal 2023 and is expected to reach 1.9 million by the end of March.

Hiroshima municipal government announced preliminary figures on February 23 showing that 1,760,252 people have visited the city during the 2023 fiscal year, which will end on March 31, already surpassing the record 1,758,746 visitors in fiscal 2019. The number of visitors for the current fiscal year is expected to reach 1.9 million in total. Tourism was boosted by the interest raised concerning Hiroshima after it hosted the G7 summit last May, particularly with regard to the legacy of the atomic bomb attack.

The Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum, which opened in 1955 on the grounds of Peace Memorial Park, has become one of the symbols of Hiroshima’s wartime tragedy, along with the A-Bomb Dome (Genbaku Dome) and the Cenotaph for the A-Bomb Victims. The mission of the museum is “to convey to people around the world the horror and inhumanity of nuclear weapons” by exhibiting materials related to the atomic bomb, historical artifacts, and testimonies. The museum displays, which were completely renovated in 2019, were viewed by all the heads of state participating in the G7 summit.

The chart below shows the total number of domestic and overseas visitors to the museum since 2011. The number of overseas visitors, in particular, has increased significantly in recent years, exceeding 500,000 for the first time in fiscal 2019, and already setting a new annual record of 569,602 within just 10 months of fiscal 2023.

Total Museum Visitors and Overseas Visitors by Fiscal year

The percentage of foreigners among total museum visitors has also increased significantly, reaching a record high of 33.6% for the first 10 months of fiscal 2023, so that one in three museum visitors is from overseas. In recent years, the percentage of visitors on domestic group tours, including school trips, has remained around 20% of the total visitors in recent years, with the exception of the pandemic years.

Percentage of Visitors from Overseas or on Domestic Group Tours

The chart below shows the monthly number of museum visitors for fiscal 2018, prior to the COVID-19 pandemic. The number rises significantly in August as well as in May, October, and November, which are the three peak months for school trips.

Number of Monthly Visitors During Fiscal 2018

Long lines of visitors waiting to purchase a ticket have become a daily sight at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum. In order to alleviate this congestion, the museum began selling tickets online on February 16. Visitors can purchase tickets by following the Buy Now link at the museum’s official website to an external site, where they can select the date and make an electronic payment.

(Translated from Japanese. Banner photo: Visitors viewing an introductory display at the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum featuring computer graphics in April 2023. © Dōune Hiroko.)

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