sights / Historic

Dejima information

Nagasaki , Japan
Getting there
Tram: Dejima
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In 1641, the Tokugawa shogunate banished all foreigners from Japan, with one exception: Dejima, a fan-shaped, artificial island 560m in circumference (15,000 sq m) in Nagasaki harbour. From then until the 1850s, this tiny Dutch trading post was the sole sanctioned foreign presence in Japan. Today the city has filled in around the island and you might miss it. Don't. Seventeen buildings, walls and structures (plus a miniature Dejima) have been painstakingly reconstructed into the Dejima Museum .

Restored and reopened in 2006 and constantly being upgraded, the buildings here are as instructive inside as they are good-looking outside, with exhibits covering the spread of trade, Western learning and culture, archaeological digs, and rooms combining Japanese tatami (woven floor matting) with Western wallpaper. There's excellent English signage. Allow at least two hours. There's even a a kimono rental shop (¥1000 per hour) for those who want to feel even more in character.