Region 8: 中国 Chugoku

Region 8: 中国 Chugoku

山口 Yamaguchi



This Prefecture's Symbol

山口 - Yamaguchi

  • Prefecture's Bird: Nabezuru
  • Prefecture's Tree: Japanese Red Pine
  • Prefecture's Flower:

CAPITAL : Yamaguchi

山口 Yamaguchi and 大分 Oita are the only two prefectures with solely 4 kyuu JLPT kanji names!

Links:
山口 - Yahoo! Japan's Yamaguchi Page
Yamaguchi Prefecture homepage


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岡山 Okayama



This Prefecture's Symbol

岡山 - Okayama

  • Prefecture's Bird: Pheasant
  • Prefecture's Tree: Japanese Red Pine
  • Prefecture's Flower: Peach Flower

CAPITAL : Okayama

Okayama's Mark is the 'OKA - 岡 ' in Okayama made circular.

I spent a full day exploring Okayama City. Many of the cultural sites to see are all in close proximity and this 'Culture Zone' is only about 15 minutes or so by foot from the main station! I didn't use the taxi once! However, that evening my dogs were barking! or as they say in Japanese 'ashi wa bou ni natchatta. (my legs have become sticks.)'

 

When arriving at Okayama City's station, go by the information desk and ask for a sightseeing map. " okayama no chizu o kudasai (Please give me a map of Okayama.)" They have a culture brochure with a short English description of the important sites.

  • One of the more interesting sites in Okayama is the Kourakuen Garden 後楽園 . There are three very famous gardens in Japan. 1) 兼六園 kenrokuen (in 石川 Ishikawa Prefecture) 2) 偕楽園 kairakuen (in 茨城 Ibaraki Prefecture) and the third being Kourakuen in Okayama.

Admission: Adults 350 ; Children 140 Yen (as of year 2000)
No holidays; open all year

  • Okayama Castle - 岡山城 okayamajyou - Very nice. The original was destroyed during the war, but this is a faithful reproduction. Great for a history buff. I ate at the Udon restaurant in the castle, but it wasn't so oishi.

Admission: Adults 300 ; Children 120 Yen (as of year 2000)
Holidays: Dec. 28-31

  • Okayama Prefectural Museum of Art - 岡山県立美術館 okayama kenritsu bijutsukan - Mostly a collection of artists from Okayama.

Admission: Adults 300 ; Children 100 Yen (as of year 2000)
Holidays: Mondays, Dec. 28 - Jan. 4

  • Okayama Orient Museum - 岡山市立オリエント美術館 okayama shiritsu oriento bijutsukan - VERY NICE! If you are interested in ancient art and archaeology, this is a must see!

Admission: Adults 300 ; Students 150 Children 70 Yen (as of year 2000)
Holidays: Mondays, Dec. 28 - Jan. 4

  • The famous Japanese traditional story Momotaro (Peach Boy) is said to have taken place in Okayama.

Links:
岡山 - Yahoo! Japan's Okayama Page
Okayama Prefecture homepage


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島根 Shimane



This Prefecture's Symbol

島根 - Shimane

  • Prefecture's Bird: Great Swan
  • Prefecture's Tree: Black Pine
  • Prefecture's Flower: Peony

CAPITAL : Matsue

The mark is actually 4 ' マ 's ( katakana for 'ma' )which have been made circular. Also '4' in Japanese is 'shi' so 4 マ 's make 'shi-ma' or the first part of the prefecture's name, "shima "

Links:
島根 - Yahoo! Japan's Shimane Page
Shimane Prefecture Homepage
JETs in Shimane


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広島 Hiroshima



This Prefecture's Symbol

広島 - Hiroshima

  • Prefecture's Bird: Abi
  • Prefecture's Tree: Maple
  • Prefecture's Flower: Momiji

CAPITAL : Hiroshima

  • Genbaku Domu - The atomic bom was detonated 500 meters above this building. Amazingly the building's structure is somewhat intact and is preserved even today. The sight is awesome. I have never seen anything like it. I copied the following from the plaque just in front of the building:

The A-bomb Dome is the ruins of the former Hiroshima Prefecture Industrial Promotion Hall which was destroyed by the first atomic bomb ever to be used in the history of humankind on August 6, 1945.

The atomic bomb was detonated in the air at an altitude of approximately 600 meters almost right over the hall. the explosion by a single bomb claimed the lives of over 200,000 people and the city area of about 2 km radius turned into ashes. In order to have this tragic fact known to succeeding generations and to make it a lesson for human kind, the reinforcement work of the ruins has been done by the contributions of many people who desire peace within and out of the country. The ruins shall be preserved forever.

- August 6, 1967 Hiroshima City

  • Walking from the Genbaku Domu, you will see the Flame of Peace and the Peace Fountain .

  • Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum - displays belongings left by the victims, the history of that day, and the story of Hiroshima's reconstruction. Once you see this I seriously doubt you can be the same. There is a tape availiable in 15 languages for 150 yen.