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Japan Travel Guide

Explore Japan: Kansai

Kansai is the western region of the major Japanese island of Honshu, second only to Tokyo's Kanto in residents. The area is also called as Kinki, literally "near the capital" (referring to former capital Kyoto).

Differences among Kansai and Kanto (the Eastern region dominated by Tokyo) are little but innumerable. Kansai people practice a characteristic dialect of Japanese, use less dark soy in their cooking, ride on the other side of escalators and are renowned for humour and their love of food.

Kansai cooking is delicately distinct from the Kanto style, although with the visits of short time is unlikely to see many differences. Possibly the most visible divergence is an inclination to use light-colored soy instead of dark, particularly in soups, and to choose thick wheat udon noodles over the buckwheat soba favored in Tokyo.

Some typical Kansai dishes comprehend sobameshi, a mixture of fried rice and noodles mixed together, and okonomiyaki, diversely described as Japanese pizza or pancakes (although Hiroshima also makes a strong claim for this).

Kansai is interest country, with Nada (in Kobe) and Fushimi (in Kyoto) alone accounting for 45% of the country's production. Kobe in especial is a good place to tour sake breweries, many of which are open to visitors.

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