Kyoto City (Japan)

2017-04-14 14:54:48 , Source : The Government Website of Shaanxi Province

Kyoto is a city located in the central part of the island of Honshu, Japan. It has a population close to 1.5 million. Formerly the Imperial capital of Japan for more than one thousand years, it is now the capital city of Kyoto Prefecture located in the Kansai region, as well as a major part of the Kyoto-Osaka-Kobe metropolitan area. Kyoto is also known as the thousand-year capital.

Natural scenery, temples, shrines, towns and homes intermingle with a poignant historical beauty. Whether it is the Gion Festival, the Tea Ceremony or Japanese flower arrangement or Nishijin-brocade, so many aspects of characteristic Japanese culture continue to thrive in Kyoto. Over a period of 1200 years, dating from the decision to move the capital to Kyoto in 794, it nurtured a splendid, delicate and unique kind of culture, and over the course of history came to be considered the mother of culture within Japan.

For this reason, Kyoto is often called "Japan's heartland", and it is said that it is impossible to know the real Japan without knowing Kyoto.

On the other hand, Kyoto is not simply protecting its old traditions and culture, but is rather building upon the rich traditions of predecessors as a foundation for open domestic and international exchange. It is a city which maintains a revolutionary spirit, a city of ideas and the cultural capital of Japan, constantly creating new traditions. In a partnership of trust with the people, efforts are made to create a "relaxing lifestyle in a vibrant city", as a positive response towards the new era, while simultaneously protecting and developing traditional culture. Kyoto is a true jewel - Japan's asset and the world's treasure.

History

The old capital of Kyoto has weathered many vicissitudes in its long history of wars and truces. The vivid crimson of the Heian Shrine, built overshadowing the Heian Palace, allows one to imagine what the freshness of that old city must have been like in its youth. With the passing of many eras and numerous shifts in power, the history of the capital, spanning over 1000 years, and ending when the last Tokugawa shogun returned sovereignty to the emperor from within the walls of Nijo Castle, represents the very course of Japanese history from ancient times to its arrival at the modern state.

Economy

The key industry of Kyoto is information technology and electronics: the city is home to the headquarters of Nintendo, Intelligent Systems, Dainippon Screen, Tose, Omron, Kyocera, Shimadzu Corp., Rohm, Horiba, Nidec Corporation, Nichicon, Nissin Electric, and GS Yuasa.

Tourism also forms a large base of Kyoto's economy. The city's cultural heritages are constantly visited by school groups from across Japan, and many foreign tourists also stop in Kyoto. In 2014, the city government announced that a record number of tourists had visited Kyoto, and it was chosen as the world's best city by U.S. travel magazine.

Traditional Japanese crafts are also major industry of Kyoto, most of which are run by artisans in small plants. Kyoto's kimono weavers are particularly renowned, and the city remains the premier center of kimono manufacturing. Such businesses, vibrant in past centuries, have declined in recent years as sales of traditional goods stagnate.

Sake brewing is Kyoto's traditional industry. Gekkeikan and Takara Holdings are major sake brewers headquartered in Kyoto.

Other notable businesses headquartered in Kyoto include Aiful, Ishida, MK, Nissen Holdings, Oh-sho, Sagawa Express, Volks and Wacoal.

The concentration of population to the capital city area is 55% which is highest among the prefectures. The economic difference between the coastal area and inland area including Kyoto basin is significant. Greater Kyoto, Kyoto Metropolitan Employment Area, (2.7 million people) had a total GDP of US$115.3 million in 2010.

Colleges and universities

Home to 37 institutions of higher education, Kyoto is one of the academic centers in Japan. Kyoto University is considered to be one of the top national universities nationwide. According to The Times Higher Education Supplement top-ranking university, Kyoto University is ranked the second university in Japan after University of Tokyo, and 25th overall in the world as of 2010. The Kyoto Institute of Technology is also among the most famous universities in Japan and is considered to be one of the best universities for architecture and design in the country. Popular private universities, such as Doshisha University and Ritsumeikan University are also located in the city.

Kyoto also has a unique higher education network called the Consortium of Universities in Kyoto, which consists of three national, three public (prefectural and municipal), and 45 private universities, as well as the city and five other organizations. The combination does not offer a degree, but offers the courses as part of a degree at participating universities.

In addition to Japanese universities and colleges, selected American universities also operate in the city for education and research. Kyoto Consortium for Japanese Studies (KCJS) is a combination of 14 American universities that sponsors a two-semester academic program for undergraduates who wish to do advanced work in Japanese language and cultural studies. The American university, Stanford University, operates a "Japan Center" in Kyoto.

Tourism

UNESCO World Heritage Site

About 20% of Japan's National Treasures and 14% of Important Cultural Properties exist in the city proper. The UNESCO World Heritage Site Historic Monuments of Ancient Kyoto (Kyoto, Uji and Otsu Cities) includes 17 locations in Kyoto, Uji in Kyoto Prefecture, and Ōtsu in Shiga Prefecture. The site was designated as World Heritage in 1994.

Festival

From Shinto rituals of the Imperial Court to the simple happenings in the everyday lives of the citizens, the face of Kyoto's long history and changing eras can be seen in the diversity of its events. The grace of the Aoi Festival, the splendor of the Gion Festival, the color of the Jidai Festival, the poetry of Daimonji Gozan Okuribi - through their rich and distinguished history, each lends a particular excitement to life in Kyoto.

Powered by: E-government Office of Shaanxi Province    Commerce Department of Shaanxi Province
Foreign Affairs Office of Shaanxi Province   Shaanxi Provincial Tourism Development Commission