The island was populated from 1887 to 1974 as a coal mining facility. The island’s most notable features are the abandoned and undisturbed concrete apartment buildings and the surrounding sea wall. It is known for its coal mines and their operation during the industrialization of Japan. Mitsubishi bought the island in 1890 and began the project, the aim of which was extracting coal from undersea mines. They built Japan’s first large concrete building (To protect from Typhoons it was 9 stories high). In 1959, the 6.3-hectare island’s population reached its peak of 5,259, with a population density of 835 people per hectare (83,500 people/km2, 216,264 people per square mile) for the whole island.
As petroleum replaced coal in Japan in the 1960s, coal mines began shutting down all over the country, and Hashima’s mines were no exception. Mitsubishi officially announced the closing of the mine in 1974, and today it is empty and bare, which is why it is called Ghost Island. A small portion of the island was re-opened for tourism on April 22, 2009 after 35 years of closure.
While watching James Bond film Skyfall(2012), I was kind of impressed with few scenes which were shot at some uninhabited island. Then after browsing, I got to know that it was shot at this Island. Thought this is worth sharing.
Interesting fact is that this Island served as an inspiration to the movie makers, Even filming of Skyfall did not took place on this Island it seems.