12 Dejimamachi, Nagasaki, Nagasaki Prefecture 850-0862, Japan

This tiny artificial island, just 560 meters (1,800 feet) in circumference, was once a Dutch trading post and the only foreign presence allowed in Japan during the country’s self-imposed isolation (known as sakoku), which took place between roughly 1635 and 1854. The island retains some attractive edifices and other structures—all restored in 2006—that together form the Dejima Museum. The buildings offer not only interesting architecture and decoration to peruse, but also exhibits and information pertaining to Dutch and Western influence on Japanese design, culture and science.

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