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Hyogo Prefecture

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Hyōgo Prefecture (兵庫県 Hyōgo-ken) is located in the Kinki region on Honshu island, Japan. The capital is Kobe.

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

Contents

History

Present-day Hyogo Prefecture includes the former provinces of Harima, Tajima, Awaji, and part of Tamba.

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.

The Ako Han, home of the 47 Ronin, is in Hyogo Prefecture.

Southern Hyogo 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 5500 people.

Geography

Hyogo 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 Hyogo's population lives on the southern coast, which is part of the Osaka-Kyoto-Kobe metropolitan area. Awajishima is an island in the Inland Sea, lying between Honshu and Shikoku.

Summertime weather throughout Hyogo is hot and humid. During the winter, the north side tends to get lots of snow, while the south side only gets occasional flurries.

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

Cities

Towns and villages

These are the towns and villages in each district.

Mergers and changes of municipalities

Merger: Yabu District (1 April 2004)

The towns of Sekinomiya, Oya, Yabu and Yoka merged to form the city of Yabu. Yabu District was dissolved as a result of this merger.

Merger: Hikami District (1 November 2004)

The towns of Aogaki, Ichijima, Kaibara, Kasuga, Sannan and Hikami merged to form the city of Tamba. Hikami District was dissolved as a result of this merger.

Merger: Midori, Seidan, Mihara and Nandan (11 January 2005)

The towns of Midori, Seidan, Mihara and Nandan merged to form the city of Minamiawaji. Mihara District was dissolved as a result of this merger.

The Merger Council of Midori, Seidan, Mihara and Nandan (in Japanese) (http://www.suisen-unet.ocn.ne.jp/gappei/)

Merger: Awaji, Higashiura, Hokudan, Ichinomiya and Tsuna (1 April 2005)

The towns of Awaji, Higashiura, Hokudan, Ichinomiya and Tsuna, all from Tsuna District, merged to form the city of Awaji.

The Merger Council of Awaji, Higashiura, Hokudan, Ichinomiya and Tsuna (in Japanese) (http://www.tsunagun5gappei.net/)

Merger: Asago, Ikuno, Santo, and Wadayama (1 April 2005)

The towns of Asago, Ikuno, Santo, and Wadayama merged to form the city of Asago. Asago District was dissolved as a result of this merger.

The merger council of Asago, Ikuno, Santo, and Wadayama (in Japanese) (http://sasayuri-net.jp/users/gappei/).

Merger: Hidaka, Kinosaki, and Takeno (1 April 2005)

The towns of Hidaka, Kinosaki, and Takeno merged into the expanded city of Toyooka. Due to this merger and the merger of Kasumi into Kami, Kinosaki District was dissolved.

Merger: Mikata, Muraoka, and Kasumi (1 April 2005)

The town of Kasumi from the former Kinosaki District and the towns of Mikata and Muraoka from Mikata District merged to form the town of Kami in Mikata District.

Merger: Chkiusa, Haga, Ichinomiya, and Yamasaki (1 April 2005)

The towns of Chikusa, Haga, Ichinomiya, Yamasaki from Shiso District merged to form the city of Shiso, Hyogo.

Economy

Hyogo prefecture has many heavy industries, and Kobe is one of the largest ports in Japan.

Demographics

Culture

Tourism

Kobe remains a popular tourist destination. To Japanese, it symbolizes contact with the West. Many homes of early American, English and European visitors still stand on the bluff overlooking the harbor. The vista of the Inland Sea remains a "million-dollar view."

The Takarazuka Revue plays in the city of Takarazuka. This is popular among Japanese tourists.

Himeji Castle receives this (and more) 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.

Prefectural symbols

Miscellaneous topics

External links


de:Präfektur Hyōgo es:Prefectura de Hyōgo eo:Hjogo (prefektujo) fr:Préfecture d'Hyōgo ko:효고 현 ja:兵庫県 pt:Hyogo sv:Hyogo prefektur zh:兵库县

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