Hashima, the abandoned island

Photo: Jordy Meow

The mysterious abandoned island featured as Silva's lair in Skyfall is a real place, Hashima. Once the world's most densely-populated company town, it's been in ruins for a generation.

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. The island has been administered as part of Nagasaki city since 2005; it had previously been administered by the former town of Takashima. ... 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. Travel to Hashima was re-opened on April 22, 2009 after 35 years of closure.