Hyōgo Prefecture


Hyōgo Prefecture

Infobox Prefecture Japan
Name = Hyōgo
JapaneseName = 兵庫県
Rōmaji = Hyōgo-ken
Symbol = PrefSymbol-Hyogo.png Capital = Kobe
Region = Kinki
Island = Honshū
TotalArea = 8,393.34
AreaRank = 12th
PCWater = 0.6
PopDate = October 1, 2005
Population = 5,595,212
PopRank = 8th
Density = 667
Districts = 8
Municipalities = 41
ISOCode = JP-28
Flower = Nojigiku ("Chrysanthemum japonense")
Tree = Camphor tree ("Cinnamomum camphora")
Bird = Oriental White Stork ("Ciconia boyciana")



Website = [http://web.pref.hyogo.jp/FL/english/index.html web.pref.hyogo.jp/FL/english/]
Governor = Toshizo Ido
nihongo|Hyōgo Prefecture|兵庫県|Hyōgo-ken is a prefecture of Japan located in the Kinki region on Honshū island. The capital is Kobe.

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

History

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

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 Hyōgo Prefecture.

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 5500 people.

Geography

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-Kyoto-Kobe metropolitan area. Awaji Island is an island in the Inland Sea, lying between Honshū and Shikoku.

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

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

Cities

Twenty-nine cities are located in Hyōgo Prefecture:

Towns and villages

Towns and villages in each district:

Islands

Two major artificial islands are located Hyōgo Prefecture:
*Rokko Island
*Port Island

Mergers

Future mergers

*The city of Akō and the only town in Akō District (Kamigōri), is scheduled to merge together and the city will retain the name Akō. Akō District will be defunct if the merger is successful. [http://www.city.ako.hyogo.jp/akosigun_gappei/index.html]

Economy

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

Hyōgo is a part of 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.

Demographics

Culture

The Hyōgo Prefectural Museum of Art in Nada Ward, Kobe.

Sports

The sports teams listed below are based in Hyōgo.

Football (soccer)

*Vissel Kobe (Kobe)

Baseball

*Orix Buffaloes (Kobe)
*Hanshin Tigers (Nishinomiya)

Volleyball

*Hisamitsu Springs (Kobe)

*JT Marvelous (NIshinomiya)

Rugby

*Kobe Steel Kobelco Steelers (Kobe)

*World Fighting Bull (Kobe)

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 Kobe port is one of the ports which are the most famous in Japan.

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

*So Taguchi, outfielder for the Philadelphia Phillies, was born in Hyōgo Prefecture.
*Katsumi Yamada, one of the All-Star competitors of "Sasuke" (and who is known as Mr. Sasuke), is from Harima in Hyōgo Prefecture.
*Juri Ueno, Japanese Academy Award-winning actress best known for her performances in "Swing Girls" and the live-action adaptation of "Nodame Cantabile", is from Kakogawa in Hyōgo Prefecture.
*Kaoru (musician), Guitarist of Dir en grey, resides in Hyōgo Prefecture.
*Shota Yasuda, Guitarist of Kanjani8, is from Amagasaki in Hyōgo Prefecture.
*Aya Matsuura, Singer from Hello Project, is from Himeji in Hyōgo
*Hiroshi Morie or HEATH in X JAPANis a musician, songwriter and Bass is from Amagasaki in Hyōgo

External links

* [http://web.pref.hyogo.jp/FL/english/index.html Official Hyōgo prefecture homepage]
* [http://www.hyogo-tourism.jp/english/ Hyōgo prefecture tourist guide]
* [http://www.hyogobcc.org/index.htm Hyōgo Business & Cultural Center]
* [http://www.hyogo-ip.or.jp/hiaf/jp/medical/index.htm Medical Services in Hyōgo prefecture]


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