The island of Hashima, off the coast of Nagasaki, Kyushu, is enjoying another moment in the spotlight due to its appearance and use as the model for villain's lair in Skyfall, 007, the 50th anniversary feature of the famous movie franchise.
Also known as Gunkanjima (Battleship Island) because of the island's distinctive profile, Hashima has always held a place in Japanese history. In the late 19th century, the island was purchased for a major coal mining industry. It soon had the highest population density due to the huge influx of people working in mines and related areas. Hashima is also known for its unique concrete architecture, and first rooftop garden in Japan. In the mid-1970s, however, the island became a ghost town, because of the world's energy shift from coal to petroleum. In 2009, the island was reopened for tourism, and now is a must-see on the lists of travelers to Nagasaki.
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