On Monday, I had a chance to get a tour of the Japan Self Defence Force Maritime Officer Candidate School.

It is located in Etajima, an island close from Hiroshima.

The Academy was founded in 1876, as The Imperial Japanese Naval Academy. The school was originally located in Tokyo, but in 1888 it was moved to this island.

At this academy, many Imperial Navy leaders were educated, including the famous General Isoroku Yamamoto.

It was occupied by the United Nations after the end of WWII in 1945 until 1956.

This is the main student building - classrooms. All the building materials were imported from England and was constructed in 1893.

The assembly hall - built in 1917. This grand building is made of stones.

Nice grassy field of the Academy - the gray building on the right used to be a part of a battle ship that was re-located here for training purposes.

This is one of the five special purpose 2-men crew submarine that was used at the Pearl Harbor Attack. The explanation said none of the five came back from the mission. This one was found by the US Navy in 1961 off the coast of Hawaii and was brought back here in the following year.

The peak is Furutaka-yama (Old Hawk Mountain - 392-meter high) as seen from the side of the Assembly Hall. The guide told us that the students run up to the top in 15 min!

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