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Kyoto (京都) is a city in Japan. It is the capital city of the Kyoto Prefecture. It is located within the Kansai Region. The city is located in the central part of the island of Honshu. Just to the North is the Fukui Prefecture and to the south is the Osaka Prefecture. The population of the city is about 1.47 million with a total land mass of 827 square kilometers. The city flower is the Azalea and the city tree is the Weeping Willow.

The economy is a majority based on tourism. The city is visited frequently by school groups and others across Japan and is a popular spot for vacations as well. Because of this the service and Wholesale industries are the highest producing areas of the economy. They comprise of over 35% of all industries in the area. Around 20% of the economy is based on manufacturing by small plants that are run by artisans who produce traditional Japanese craft. This area is the main center for kimono manufacturing.

The city is home to companies such as Nintendo, Omron, Kyocera and Murata.


Until 1868 Kyoto was the capital of Japan. In that year the government was transferred to Edo or Tokyo during the Imperial Restoration. Edo was renamed Tokyo and Kyoto was known as Saikyo for a short time.

This area was not a target by Allied Forces during World War II. The city was put on a list, but after consideration it was decided to take it off. Because of this, culture and old architecture has stayed intact. Some of these areas are known as historical markers, but the city favors modernization overall and little by little the area is being broken down.

On September 1, 1956 Kyoto became under government ordinance.

In 1997 the city hosted a conference that resulted in the Kyoto Protocol being developed to control green house emissions.

Points of Interest

  • Gozan Fire Festival starts at 8:00pm on August 16th. In the mountains that surround the city of Kyoto, beds of fire are prepared and lit, creating a beautiful view from the mountains and from the air. The tradition originated when the monk Kobo-Daishi prayed for an end to the plagues. The five fires on Gozan, Myoho, Funagata, Hidari-daimonji and Tori-gata are lit together, painting the night sky a bright red, and creating one of Kyoto's most exciting scenes.
  • Fushimi Inari-taisha is a shrine dedicated to the spirit Inari. It is well known for the many vermilion torii lining the paths on the hills where the shrine is located. The spirit is known as the protector of grains and has been associated with wealth. There are hiking paths and various food stalls that sell various noodle dishes. This film was featured in the 2005 film Memoirs of Geisha.

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