The tiny island of Okunoshima is located in the Inland Sea of Japan, and can only be accessed by taking a ferry from the mainland. During World War II, Okunoshima was the location of a major poison gas factory, and provided the weapons for a lot of the chemical warfare that was carried out in China.
This is clear to see from all the abandoned poison gas research and manufacturing facilities dotted around the island. There’s even a museum with the specific intent of educating and alerting people about the dangers of chemical warfare. Yet, despite this grim history, the oddest part about the island is who’s made it a permanent home...
An abandoned gas manufacturing plant.
The inside of the power station that supplied power to the factory.
This museum opened in 1988 to raise awareness of the island’s role in the chemical warfare of WWII.
But wait, what is that? It’s a bunny rabbit.
… And he’s got a bunch of friends.
These guys are all really friendly.
In 1971, a group of schoolchildren released eight rabbits on the island. Over time, they started breeding like... well, rabbits.
By now, the 7,500-square-foot island is home to over 300 rabbits, and has been nicknamed Usagi Shima, or “Rabbit Island”.
It’s pretty funny to think that what used to be a top-secret military research facility focused on death is now a place to go cuddle and feed bunny rabbits.
The rabbits have become quite a tourist attraction, bringing countless visitors each year.
There are, understandably, no cats or dogs allowed on the island, and hunting the rabbits is strictly forbidden.
I guess you could say these rabbits found themselves an island paradise.
This island has got to be the equivalent of a holy pilgrimage for any serious rabbit lovers out there! I’d love to take a trip and spend the day getting cuddled by cute bunnies. It really is hilarious to think that an island famous for poison gas ended up becoming a cuddly bunny haven.