Visit Busan, South Korea's 'second city' after Seoul and one of the world's largest ports. Busan has been built on 17 centuries of history, yet its modernity is unmistakable and distinct. Get to know its treasures during a hop-on/hop-off bus tour, stopping along the way to explore bustling markets, beaches, parks and other sights. You may also hop off to spend time at the Busan Museum or the Busan Museum of Art; however, admission is at your own expense. Alternately, journey to the magnificent hillside temple of Beomeosa and the coastal temple of Haedong Yonggung.
Arrive in Hiroshima for an overnight stay, giving you time to ponder this resilient city. Once at the forefront of industry and education, it grew from the 19th century to become one of Japan's most important industrial centers. Contemplate the city's decades-long recovery from its devastation on August 6, 1945, at the burned-out shell of the Industrial Promotion Hall and the Peace Memorial Park. Perhaps you will choose to travel to historic Hiroshima Castle and the charming 'shrunken scenery garden,' or board a ferry to discover the wooded hills and cherished Itsukushima Shrine on the picturesque Itsukushima Island.
Today, you may combine a visit to the beautiful Mitaki temple with the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and Museum. If you prefer, you may explore more of Hiroshima on your own, perhaps paying your respects at the Children's Peace Monument; its Flame of Peace will burn until the last nuclear weapon on the planet has been dismantled.
Home to two of Japan's oldest shrines, Osaka is a pilgrimage site for many devout followers of Shinto. At Sumiyoshi Taisha (Sumiyoshi Grand Shrine), admire the fine architecture that stretches back 17 centuries, a stark and elegant style with vivid red beams and columns. On the way back to your ship, admire the nearly 1,000-foot-tall Abena Harukas, Japan's tallest building. If you wish, you may journey to Kyoto, Japan's former imperial city of stunning shrines, bamboo forests and the splendid Kinkakuji Temple (Golden Pavilion).
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