|— Town —|
|• Mayor||Masamori Hirayasu|
|• Total||53.29 km2 (20.58 sq mi)|
|Population (April 2008)|
|• Density||127/km2 (330/sq mi)|
|Time zone||Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)|
|Address||307, China, China-chō, Ōshima-gun, Kagoshima-ken
|Website||Town of China|
China (知名町 China-chō , IPA: [tɕina]) is a town located in Ōshima District, Kagoshima, Japan. As of 2007[update], the town has an estimated population of 6,892 and a density of 129 persons per km². The total area is 53.29 km².
The area was officially recognized as a settlement in 1888 with the establishment of the China Village Office (知名村役場). It was promoted from "village" to "town" status in 1946, during the Allied occupation of Japan.
China is located on Okinoerabujima island, one of two towns on the island. The town's one kilometre-long Yakomo Beach is about five minutes from the harbour by bus.NHK describes it as one of the most beautiful beaches on the island. Other natural seaside attractions include Ushishi Beach (ウシシ海岸) and Tamina Cape (田皆岬).
Another tourist attraction in the town is the 3,500-meter long Shōryū Caves (昇竜洞). They were discovered in 1963 and partially opened to the public that same year.
China is located on Kagoshima Prefectural Route 84. The only airport serving the area, the Okinoerabu Airport, is about 80 minutes away. There also is a ferry to the prefectural capital Kagoshima. It takes between 17 and 18 hours.
Sugar cane, potato, and peanut farming are popular. Floriculture is also practiced. A total of 1,958 hectares of land are under cultivation in the town. However, due to the lack of local jobs, there has been an outflow of residents.
China has a distinctive form of lion dance, believed to have been transmitted from Okinawa in the 18th century. Another local traditional dance is the Daija-Odori (大蛇踊り, literally, "big snake dance"), consisting of a snake puppet suspended in mid-air from a frame and manipulated by strings. It is performed to a taiko drum and sanshin (Okinawan three-stringed banjo) accompaniment.
Popular local dishes include the traditional tofu-misozuke, prepared by drying tofu in the sun and then adding miso. A more recent innovation adds kimchi to the dish. The town tree is the banyan, and the town flower is the hibiscus. Both were chosen in 1982.
Education in China is controlled by the five members of the Education Committee, whose members serve four year terms. As of 2008[update], the members of the committee are Kasuga Tetsuyū, Nakada Akimi, Akita Yoshihiro, Miyayama Kazuo, and Ooyama Osamu. The town has five kindergartens, five primary schools, two middle schools, and one senior high school. The high school, Okinoerabu High School, was formed in 1949 through the merger of China High School and Wadomari High School; it maintains campuses in both towns.
|Name||Number of students|
|Kamishiro Kindergarten||0 (classes suspended)|
|China Primary School||222|
|Sumiyoshi Primary School||53|
|Tamina Primary School||35|
|Kamishiro Primary School||23|
|Shimohirakawa Primary School||109|
|China Middle School||129|
|Tamina Middle School||65|
|Okinoerabu High School||337|
There is also a municipal library.
There are two medical clinics, four dental clinics, and one hospital. There are also two nursing homes.
- 知名町 (China Town), Kagoshima Prefecture Government, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 鹿児島の観光・自然・歴史・宿泊・交通など旅行に役立つ情報をお届けします。, Kagoshima Prefecture: Tourism Division, 2007, archived from the original on 2007-11-21, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 沿革/町章/町木/町花, China Town Office, retrieved 2009-03-20
- "屋子母海岸 (Yakomo Beach)", Japan Tourism Agency, 2006, retrieved 2009-03-20
- "知名町立知名小学校 (China Municipal Primary School)", 情報WAVEかごしま, NHK, 2008-01-30, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 昇竜洞：太古の謎を秘めた幻想の世界, China Town Office, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 平成19年度農畜産物生産計画 (2008 agricultural production statistics), China Town Office, 2008, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 瀬利覚の獅子舞 (Serikaku Lion Dance), Kagoshima Prefectural Office, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 上平川の大蛇踊り (The Daija-Odori of Kamihirakawa), Kagoshima Prefectural Office, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 上平川大蛇踊り (Kamihirakawa's Daija-Odori), Japan Tourism Agency, 2006, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 教育行政の基本方針＆教育委員 (Basic Educational Policy and Education Committee Members), China Town Office
- 沖永良部高校 沿革, Kagoshima Prefectural Institute for Education Research, retrieved 2009-03-22
- 学校紹介 (Schools Introduction), China Town Office, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 鹿児島県立 沖永良部高等学校 (Kagoshima Prefectural Okinoerabu High School), Kagoshima Prefectural Institute for Education Research, retrieved 2009-03-22
- 沖永良部高校とは (About Okinoerabu High School), Kagoshima Prefectural Institute for Education Research, retrieved 2009-03-22
- 知名町立図書館 (China Municipal Library), China Town Office, retrieved 2009-03-20
- 大山野営場 (Ōyama Camping Grounds), China Town Office, retrieved 2009-03-20