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Japan Travel Guide

The City of Okayama



Okayama is the capital of Okayama prefecture; it's located in the Chugoku region of Japan, on the southern coast of the island of Honshu. Since of March 2007, the city has an population around of 699,000 inhabitants and the density of 884.87 persons per km², is a fairly important city. The total area is 789.88 km². On January 22, 2007, the towns of Seto and Takebe integrated into Okayama. The city was based on June 1, 1889. The city is known as the site of the Korakuen Garden and the black Okayama Castle; which is a fresh reconstruction. The popular Japanese folktale of Momotaro may have originated there.

Sogenji is a very large zen monastery belonging to the Rinzai sect situated in the centre of the city. It has taught to many of the abbots of the major monasteries in Kyoto and today it is a training centre for foreign practitioners. The city is one of few Japanese cities to have kept an operational tram system. It is a major rail interchange as trains from Shikoku connect with the Sanyo main line here.

The city became a central city in 1996. After that in March 22, 2005, these two towns, Mitsu in Mitsu District and the town of Nadasaki from Kojima District were integrated into the city, and on January 22, 2007, the town of Takebe from Mitsu District and Seto from Akaiwa District were also integrated into the city. All three districts have since been dissolved.

Other interesting attraction of the city is Okayama-jo Castle. It adopted the name of U-jo (Crow Castle) for its black color, and in contrast to Himeji Castle, 50km east, acquired the name of White Egret. Like many other castles, Okayama-jo was bombed to the ground during WWII, and the present structure is a ferro-concrete reconstruction of 1966.


Okayama Travel Guide - Okayama Castle
Okayama Castle
Okayama Travel Guide - Golden Shachihoko
Golden Shachihoko






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