Okunoshima – better known as Rabbit Island – has recently become a mecca for animal-loving travellers who have seen the cute pictures online. Although not the most straightforward place to get to, we can advise you of the easiest way to include this on your trip if you are staying in Hiroshima or elsewhere in Setouchi, and looking to spend a day on a very unique and beautiful subtropical island.
The island was once hidden from maps of the region, serving as the location of a secret poison gas factory in the early parts of the 20th century. With this nefarious past long behind it, Okunoshima is more famous now for its abundance of semi-tame rabbits, who have made the island their home – to the joy of visitors who come to take photos and hand-feed them. With the abandoned industrial buildings now overgrown, and the fluffy inhabitants taking centre stage, the vibe of the island is somewhere between Chernobyl and a petting zoo… but that’s what makes it all the more interesting, for visitors of all ages.