Kumamoto Prefecture

Kumamoto Prefecture (熊本県, Kumamoto-ken) is a prefecture of Japan located on the island of Kyūshū.[1] Kumamoto Prefecture has a population of 1,748,134 (1 June 2019) and has a geographic area of 7,409 km² (2,860 sq mi). Kumamoto Prefecture borders Fukuoka Prefecture to the north, Ōita Prefecture to the northeast, Miyazaki Prefecture to the southeast, and Kagoshima Prefecture to the south.

Kumamoto Prefecture

熊本県
Japanese transcription(s)
 • Japanese熊本県
 • RōmajiKumamoto-ken
Flag of Kumamoto Prefecture
Flag
Official logo of Kumamoto Prefecture
Symbol
Location of Kumamoto Prefecture
Coordinates: 32°43′N 130°40′E / 32.717°N 130.667°E / 32.717; 130.667Coordinates: 32°43′N 130°40′E / 32.717°N 130.667°E / 32.717; 130.667
CountryJapan
RegionKyushu
IslandKyushu
CapitalKumamoto
SubdivisionsDistricts: 9, Municipalities: 45
Government
 • GovernorIkuo Kabashima
Area
 • Total7,409.48 km2 (2,860.82 sq mi)
Area rank15th
Population
 (June 1, 2019)
 • Total1,748,134
 • Rank23rd
 • Density240/km2 (610/sq mi)
ISO 3166 codeJP-43
Websitewww.pref.kumamoto.jp
Symbols
BirdEurasian skylark (Alauda arvensis)
FlowerGentian (Gentiana scabra var. buergeri)
TreeCamphor tree (Cinnamomum camphora)

Kumamoto is the capital and largest city of Kumamoto Prefecture, with other major cities including Yatsushiro, Amakusa, and Tamana.[2] Kumamoto Prefecture is located in the center of Kyūshū on the coast of the Ariake Sea, across from Nagasaki Prefecture, with the mainland separated from the East China Sea by the Amakusa Archipelago. Kumamoto Prefecture is home to Mount Aso, the largest active volcano in Japan and among the largest in the world, with its peak 1,592 metres (5,223 ft) above sea level.

HistoryEdit

Historically, the area was called Higo Province; and the province was renamed Kumamoto during the Meiji Restoration.[3] The creation of prefectures was part of the abolition of the feudal system. The current Japanese orthography for Kumamoto literally means "bear root/origin", or "origin of the bear".

GeographyEdit

 
Map of Kumamoto Prefecture showing municipal boundaries
     Government Ordinance Designated City      City      Town      Village

Kumamoto Prefecture is in the center of Kyushu, the southernmost of the four major Japanese islands. It is bordered by the Ariake inland sea and the Amakusa archipelago to the west, Fukuoka Prefecture and Ōita Prefecture to the north, Miyazaki Prefecture to the east, and Kagoshima Prefecture to the south.

Mount Aso (1,592 m (5,223 ft)), an extensive active volcano, is in the east of Kumamoto Prefecture. This volcano is located at the centre of the Aso caldera.

As of 31 March 2019, 21% of the total land area of the prefecture was designated as natural parks: the Aso Kujū and Unzen-Amakusa National Parks; Kyūshū Chūō Sanchi and Yaba-Hita-Hikosan Quasi-National Parks; and Ashikita Kaigan, Itsuki Gokanoshō, Kinpōzan, Misumi-Ōyano Umibe, Okukuma, Shōtaisan, and Yabe Shūhen Prefectural Natural Parks.[4]

CitiesEdit

 
Kumamoto City
 
Hitoyoshi
 
Aso City

Fourteen cities are located in Kumamoto Prefecture:

Towns and villagesEdit

 
Itsuki Village

These are the towns and villages in each district:

MergersEdit

DemographicsEdit

The population was on 1 June 2019 at 1,748,134 inhabitants with a population density of 236 per km ². The prefecture ranks 23rd in Japan.

EconomyEdit

 
Tsūjun Bridge in Yamato, Kamimashiki

There is a Honda motorcycle plant.

TourismEdit

The prefecture has a mascot named "Kumamon", a black bear with red cheeks, who was created to attract tourists to the region after the Kyushu Shinkansen line opened.[5][6]

EducationEdit

UniversitiesEdit

NationalEdit

PublicEdit

PrivateEdit

TransportationEdit

RailEdit

TramwayEdit

RoadEdit

Expressways and toll roadsEdit

National highwaysEdit

PortsEdit

Ferry routesEdit

AirportEdit

SportsEdit

 
Roasso Kumamoto franchise stadium in KKWing of Kumamoto

These sports teams are based in the prefecture:

  • Professional:
  • Amateur:
    • Kumamoto Golden Larks - regional baseball

The Kumamoto Prefecture will host the 2019 World Women's Handball Championship, having previously hosted the 1997 World Men's Handball Championship.

Sister citiesEdit

Kumamoto Prefecture is the 'sister state/prefecture' of Montana in the United States.

Kumamoto has a sister city located in Texas named San Antonio, which holds an annual fall festival 'akimatsuri' for its Japanese citizens. In 2015 the mascot, 'Kumamon' visited as an honorary ambassador during the festival located at the Japanese Tea Gardens.

Notable peopleEdit

NotesEdit

  1. ^ Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Kumamoto prefecture" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 572, p. 572, at Google Books.
  2. ^ Nussbaum, "Kumamoto" in p. 572, p. 572, at Google Books.
  3. ^ Nussbaum, "Provinces and prefectures" in p. 780, p. 780, at Google Books.
  4. ^ 自然公園都道府県別面積総括 [General overview of area figures for Natural Parks by prefecture] (PDF) (in Japanese). Ministry of the Environment. 31 March 2019. Retrieved 3 August 2019.
  5. ^ The Life and Times of Japan's Mascots
  6. ^ "Top Ten Japanese Character Mascots". Finding Fukuoka. 2012-01-13. Retrieved 2013-02-16.
  7. ^ JpopAsia. "Miku (BAND-MAID) | JpopAsia". JpopAsia. Retrieved 2018-03-11.
  8. ^ "Eiichiro Oda, Hajime Isayama Show Their Support After Kumamoto Earthquakes". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2018-03-11.

ReferencesEdit

External linksEdit