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Hyogo Prefecture

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Hyogo Prefecture

Hyōgo Prefecture
Japanese transcription(s)
 • Japanese 兵庫県
 • Rōmaji Hyōgo-ken

Symbol of Hyōgo Prefecture
Country Japan
Region Kansai
Island Honshu
Capital Kobe
 • Governor Toshizo Ido
 • Total 8,396.13 km2 (3,241.76 sq mi)
Area rank 12th
Population (November 1, 2011)
 • Total 5,582,978
 • Rank 7th
 • Density 660/km2 (1,700/sq mi)
ISO 3166 code JP-28
Districts 8
Municipalities 41
Flower Nojigiku (Chrysanthemum japonense)
Tree Camphor tree (Cinnamomum camphora)
Bird Oriental White Stork (Ciconia boyciana)

Hyōgo Prefecture (兵庫県 Hyōgo-ken?) is a prefecture of Japan located in the Kansai region on Honshu island.[1] The capital is Kobe.[2]

The prefecture's name was previously alternately spelled as Hiogo.


Present-day Hyōgo Prefecture includes the former provinces of Harima, Tajima, Awaji, and parts of Tamba and Settsu.[3]

In 1180, near the end of the Heian Period, Emperor Antoku, Taira no Kiyomori, and the Imperial court moved briefly to Fukuhara, in what is now the city of Kobe. There the capital remained for five months.

Himeji Castle, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, is in the city of Himeji.

Southern Hyōgo Prefecture was severely devastated by the magnitude 7.2 Great Hanshin earthquake of 1995, which destroyed major parts of Kobe and Awaji, as well as Takarazuka and neighboring Osaka Prefecture, killing nearly 6,500 people.


Hyōgo has coastlines on two seas: to the north, the Sea of Japan, to the south, the Inland Sea. The northern portion is sparsely populated, except for the city of Toyooka, and the central highlands are only populated by tiny villages. Most of Hyōgo's population lives on the southern coast, which is part of the Osaka-Kobe-Kyoto metropolitan area. Awaji Island is an island in the Inland Sea, lying between Honshu and Shikoku.

Summertime weather throughout Hyōgo is hot and humid. As for winter conditions in Hyōgo, the north of Hyōgo tends to receive abundant snow, whilst the south receives only the occasional flurry.

Hyōgo borders on Osaka Prefecture, Kyoto Prefecture, Tottori Prefecture and Okayama Prefecture.

As of March 31, 2008, 20% of the total land area of the prefecture was designated as Natural Parks, namely the Sanin Kaigan and Setonaikai National Parks; Hyōnosen-Ushiroyama-Nagisan Quasi-National Park; and Asago Gunzan, Harima Chūbu Kyūryō, Inagawa Keikoku, Izushi-Itoi, Kasagatayama-Sengamine, Kiyomizu-Tōjōko-Tachikui, Onzui-Chikusa, Seiban Kyūryō, Seppiko-Mineyama, Tajima Sangaku, and Taki Renzan Prefectural Natural Parks.[4]


Twenty-nine cities are located in Hyōgo Prefecture:


These are the towns in each district:


Two major artificial islands are located Hyōgo Prefecture:

National parks


Future mergers

  • The city of [1] However, the merger never took place yet.


Hyōgo Prefecture has many heavy industries, metal and medical, and Kobe Port is one of the largest ports in Japan.

Hyōgo is a part of the Hanshin Industrial Region. There are two research institute of Riken, natural sciences research institute in Japan, in Kobe and Harima. It has "SPring-8",a synchrotron radiation facility in Harima.


National Treasures of Japan

Important Preservation Districts for Groups of Historic Buildings in Japan




High schools

  • Hōtoku Gakuen High School


The sports teams listed below are based in Hyōgo.

Football (soccer)





Kobe remains a popular tourist destination. The region symbolizes Japan's earliest contact with the outside world. Many homes of early foreign visitors still stand on the bluff overlooking the harbor.

The vista of the Inland Sea remains a "million-dollar view". The Kobe port is one of the ports which are the most famous in Japan.

A popular troupe of Takarazuka Revue plays in Takarazuka.

Himeji Castle receives this praise from UNESCO: "masterpiece of construction in wood, combining function with aesthetic appeal... ." Together with its historical significance and its easy access from Kyoto or Osaka by Shinkansen, Himeji Castle receives tremendous numbers of visitors annually.

As for the Hyogo Prefecture northern part, sands where the coast is beautiful and a dynamic rock are consecutive. In the vicinity, there are a lot of famous sightseeing spots such as Kinosaki Onsen, Izushi and Yumura Onsen.

Festival and events

  • Miyuki Street New Year's midnight traditional sale, Himeji
  • Nishinomiya Shrine's Ebisu Festival in January
  • Yanagihara Ebisu Festival in January, Kobe
  • Tada Shrine's Genji Festival in April, Kawanishi
  • Kobe Festival and Parade in May
  • Aioi Peron Festival in May
  • Himeji Yukata Festival in June
  • Dekansho Bon Dancing Festival in August, Sasayama
  • Nada Fighting Festival, Himeji
  • Kobe Luminarie in December
  • Ako Chushingura Parade



  • Hojo Railway (Ao-Hojo)

People movers



National highways

  • Route 2
  • Route 9
  • Route 28
  • Route 29
  • Route 43
  • Route 171
  • Route 173
  • Route 174 (Sannomiya-Kobe Port)
  • Route 175
  • Route 176
  • Route 178
  • Route 179
  • Route 250
  • Route 312
  • Route 372
  • Route 373
  • Route 426
  • Route 427
  • Route 428
  • Route 429
  • Route 436
  • Route 477
  • Route 482
  • Route 483


  • Kobe Port - Mainly international container hub port
  • Akashi Port
  • Shikama Port - Mainly Shodo Island route ferry


Notable people



  • Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric and Käthe Roth. (2005). OCLC 58053128

External links

  • Official Hyōgo prefecture homepage
  • Hyōgo prefecture tourist guide
  • Hyōgo Business & Cultural Center
  • Medical Services in Hyōgo prefecture

Coordinates: 34°41′26.94″N 135°10′59.08″E / 34.6908167°N 135.1830778°E / 34.6908167; 135.1830778

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