Trisha Shetty (Editor)

Kyoto Prefecture

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ISO 3166 code

4,613 km²

Streaked shearwater


Area rank



Kyoto Prefecture wwwkpicorjpmap2imgimgmap01gif

2.543 million (31 Mar 2012)

6°C, Wind NW at 11 km/h, 98% Humidity

Kyoto, Miyazu, Uji, Maizuru, Kyōtango, Kameoka

Colleges and Universities
Kyoto University, Doshisha University, Ritsumeikan University, Kyoto Sangyo University, Kyoto Institute of Technology

Points of interest
Kinkaku‑ji, Kiyomizu‑dera, Nijō Castle, Ginkaku‑ji, Fushimi Inari‑taisha

Japan travel one of japan s three most scenic places amanohashidate kyoto prefecture japan

Kyoto Prefecture (京都府, Kyōto-fu) is a prefecture of Japan in the Kansai region of the island of Honshu. The capital is the city of Kyoto.


Map of Kyoto Prefecture, Japan


Until the Meiji Restoration, the area of Kyoto Prefecture was known as Yamashiro.

For most of its history, the city of Kyoto was Japan's Imperial capital. The city's history can be traced back as far as the 6th century. In 544, the Aoi Matsuri was held in Kyoto to pray for good harvest and good weather.

Kyoto did not start out as Japan's capital. A noteworthy earlier capital was Nara. In 741, Emperor Shōmu moved the capital briefly to Kuni-kyo, between the cities of Nara and Kyoto, in present-day Kyoto Prefecture. In 784, the capital was moved to Nagaokakyō, also in present-day Kyoto Prefecture. In 794, Emperor Kanmu moved the capital to Heian-kyo, and this was the beginning of the current-day city of Kyoto. Even today, almost all of the streets, houses, stores, temples and shrines in Kyoto exist where they were placed in this year.

Although in 1192 real political power shifted to Kamakura, where a samurai clan established the shogunate, Kyoto remained the imperial capital as the powerless emperors and their court continued to be seated in the city. Imperial rule was briefly restored in 1333, but another samurai clan established a new shogunate in Kyoto three years later.

In 1467, a great civil war, the Ōnin no Ran, took place inside Kyoto, and most of the town was burned down. Japan plunged into the age of warring feudal lords. A new strong man, Tokugawa Ieyasu, established the shogunate at Edo (today's Tokyo) in 1603.

In the 15th century AD, tea-jars were brought by the shoguns to Uji in Kyoto from the Philippines which was used in the Japanese tea ceremony.

The Meiji Restoration returned Japan to imperial rule in 1868. Emperor Meiji, who was now the absolute sovereign, went to stay in Tokyo during the next year. The imperial court has not returned to Kyoto since then. During the instigation of Fuhanken Sanchisei in 1868, the prefecture received its suffix fu. The subsequent reorganization of the old provincial system merged the former Tango Province, Yamashiro Province and the eastern part of Tanba Province into today's Kyoto Prefecture.

Although many Japanese major cities were heavily bombed by U.S. bombers during World War II, the old capital escaped such devastating bombing. During the occupation, the U.S. Sixth Army was headquartered in Kyoto.


Kyoto Prefecture is almost in the center of Honshu and of Japan. It covers an area of 4,612.71 square kilometres (1,780.98 sq mi), which is 1.2% of Japan. Kyoto is 31st by size. To the north, it faces the Sea of Japan and Fukui Prefecture. To the south, it faces Osaka and Nara Prefectures. To the east, it faces Mie and Shiga Prefectures. To the west, it faces Hyōgo Prefecture. The prefecture is separated in the middle by the Tanba Mountains. This makes its climate very different in the north and south.

As of 15 April 2016, 21% of the prefecture's land area was designated as Natural Parks, namely Sanin Kaigan National Park; Biwako, Kyoto Tamba Kogen, Tango-Amanohashidate-Ōeyama and Wakasa Wan Quasi-National Parks; and Hozukyō, Kasagiyama, and Rurikei Prefectural Natural Parks.


Fifteen cities are located in Kyoto Prefecture:

Towns and villages

These are the towns and villages in each district:


The city of Kyoto is famous for tourism. Northern Kyoto on the Tango Peninsula has fishing and water transportation, and midland Kyoto has agriculture and forestry. Nintendo is headquartered in the city of Kyoto.


Kyoto has been, and still remains, Japan's cultural center. For over 1000 years it was Japan's capital. When the capital was changed to Tokyo, Kyoto remained Japan's cultural capital. See Culture of Japan.


The sports teams listed below are based in Kyoto.

Football (soccer)

  • Kyoto Sanga F.C. (in the city of Kyoto)
  • Sagawa Printing S.C. (Muko)
  • Basketball

  • Kyoto Hannaryz (Bj League)
  • Woman's Baseball

  • Kyoto Astrodreams
  • Rail

  • JR Central
  • Tokaido Shinkansen - Kyoto Station
  • JR West
  • Kyoto Line
  • Biwako Line
  • Kosei Line
  • Nara Line
  • Kansai Line (Kizu-Kamo)
  • Sagano Line
  • Sanin Line
  • Fukuchiyama Line
  • Maizuru Line
  • Obama Line
  • Keihan
  • Keihan Line
  • Uji Line
  • Keishin Line
  • Outou Line
  • Hankyu
  • Kyoto Line
  • Arashiyama Line
  • Kintetsu
  • Kyoto Line
  • Kyoto Municipal Subway
  • Karasuma Line
  • Tozai Line
  • Sagano Scenic Railway (Arashiyama-Kameoka)
  • Kyoto Tango Railway
  • Miyafuku Line
  • Miyamai Line
  • Miyatoyo Line
  • City Tram

  • Randen
  • Arashiyama Line
  • Kitano Line
  • Eiden
  • Eizan Line
  • Kurama Line
  • Ports

  • Maizuru Port - Mainly international container terminal and ferry route to Hokkaido (Otaru and Tomakomai).
  • Tourism

    The city of Kyoto is one of the most popular tourist spots in Japan, and many people from far and wide visit there. Along with Nara, Kyoto is a favorite location for the graduation trip of Elementary and Junior High schools.

    Some of the festivals held in Kyoto are Aoi Matsuri from 544, Gion Matsuri from 869, Ine Matsuri from the Edo-era, Daimonji Gozan Okuribi from 1662, and Jidai Matsuri from 1895. Every shrine and temple holds some sort of event, and many of them are open for public viewing.

    Defense facilities

    On August 1, 2013, prefectural and municipal authorities gave consent for a USFJ missile monitoring station to be set up in the city of Kyōtango. It will be co-located with a JASDF facility already based in the city. At least initially, its primary sensor will be a mobile X-band radar used to gather data on ballistic missile launches which will then be relayed by the station to warships equipped with Aegis air defense systems and to ground-based interceptor missile sites. A hundred and sixty personnel will be based at the station.


    The current governor of Kyoto is former Home Affairs Ministry bureaucrat Keiji Yamada. He has been reelected to a fourth term in April 2014 with support from the major non-Communist parties against only one JCP-supported challenger.

    The prefectural assembly has 60 members from 25 electoral districts and is still elected in unified local elections (last round: 2011). As of September 2013, it was composed as follows: Liberal Democratic Party 25, Democratic Party 14, Japanese Communist Party 11, Kōmeitō 5, Kyōto sōsei forum 1, Japan Restoration Party 1.

    Kyoto's delegation to the National Diet consists of six members of the House of Representatives and four members (two per election) of the House of Councillors. After the national elections of 2010, 2012 and 2013, the prefecture is represented by four Liberal Democrats and two Democrats in the lower house, and two Liberal Democrats, one Democrat and one Communist in the upper house.

    Prefectural symbols

    The prefectural flower of Kyoto is the weeping cherry. The Kitayama Sugi is the official tree, and the streaked shearwater the bird that symbolizes the prefecture.

    Sister areas

    Kyoto Prefecture has sister relationships with these places:

  • Shaanxi Province, China
  • Yogyakarta Special Region, Indonesia
  • Oklahoma, United States
  • Leningrad Oblast, Russia
  • Edinburgh, Scotland, United Kingdom
  • Occitanie, France
  • Quebec, Canada
  • These relationships are distinct from those of cities in Kyoto Prefecture with other cities.


    Kyoto Prefecture Wikipedia

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