Zozan Imperial Wartime Tunnels
Officially known as the ‘Matsushiro Daihonei’ or ‘Matsushiro Underground Imperial Headquarters’, the Zozan Tunnels are a series of extensive subterranean passageways, bunkers and living areas excavated beneath the quiet and unassuming town, in the final months of WWII.
Expecting invasion by the Allied Forces, the tunnels were intended to serve as the underground headquarters of the Japanese military and government. Construction of the tunnels required the labour of an workforce estimated to have numbered around 10,000, mostly forced Korean labourers.
A 500 metre section of the tunnels can still be entered today. Outside of the tunnel, a small museum commemorates the sacrifice and conditions endured by those tasked with constructing the tunnels. When visiting, please follow the rules and be conscious of the sensitivity of the site for many people.