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【News from the Japanese Archipelago】

post date : 2016.10.24

[City of Kawasaki] Art for Life: Earthquake (Myth of Tomorrow) Exhibition (October 22, 2016~) 


Japan is a country in which large scale earthquakes could strike anywhere and at any time—as a result, we are forced to live out our lives ever-aware of the possibility that, at any moment, an earthquake or tsunami could arrive and wipe out everything we have.  What can art-related activities such as creative and literary works do to help those stuck in the midst of the despair and agony that accompany these earthquakes? At this year’s exhibition—and on the fifth anniversary of the Great East Japan Earthquake—we will explore this question through an examination of artwork created by victims/artists from the disaster-stricken Tohoku region, as well as through the contemplation of Taro Okamoto’s iconic masterpiece “Myth of Tomorrow”.


■ Exhibition Period: October 22, 2016  ~ January 9, 2017   9:30 A.M. – 5:00 P.M. (Last entry at 4:30 P.M.)

(Holidays: Mondays (Except January 9th), November 4th & 24th, December 29th ~ January 3rd)

■ Details: (Japanese only)

■ Inquiries: Taro Okamoto Museum of Art, Kawasaki 044-900-9898

Citizens’ and Cultural Affairs Promotion Office, Kawasaki City 044-200-3713






[City of Yokohama] ~Press Invitation~ Interviewing Hideki Togi from a musical family with a 1,300‒year gagaku heritage (October 29 [Sat])


Born into a musical family playing the Japanese imperial court music for last 1,300 years, Hideki Togi has been confirmed to perform the gagaku (traditional Japanese court music)in an open space for Yokohama Otomatsuri 2016, Japan’s largest music festival. There is an interview opportunity after the performance.


■Date: October 29, 2016[Sat] Start scheduled for 18:00

■Venue: Sakata Seed Garden Square, Yokohama Landmark Plaza

■Please apply: by e‒mail ( by noon on October 28[Fri] .

■Subject: [Media Application] Free Concert by Hideki Togi at Yokohama Oto matsuri

■Please include: institution (country, region), media name, name of participant, number of participants, contact information (e‒mail address, phone number), cameras yes/no (photo or video), language of coverage (Japanese or English), desired coverage (1. Performance, 2. Interview)


<Inquiry> For media coverage, please contact the following:

Cultural Programs Promotion Department, Culture and Tourism Bureau, City of Yokohama

Mr. Kaida / Ms. Okubo   E‒mail:   TEL: 045‒663‒1365




[City of Kyoto] Kyoto International Performing Arts Festival KYOTO EXPERIMENT 2016 Autumn


With the Rohm Theatre Kyoto as its main stage and locations throughout Kyoto, the KYOTO EXPERIMENT 2016 Autumn features 19 works of avant-garde theater, dance, and more by artists working in Japan and abroad. This time the festival will introduce the Play Park: a festival for children and grown-ups, so that children can also enjoy this amazing event.


Date: October 22, 2016 (Sat) – November 13, 2016 (Sun)

■ Locations: Rohm Theatre Kyoto, Kyoto Art Center, Kyoto Art Theater Shunjuza, Kyoto Prefectural Citizens Hall Art Live

Theater International (ALTI), Kyoto City University of Art Art Gallery@ KCUA, etc.

■ For Inquiries: Kyoto Experiment Office  TEL: 075-213-5839

■ Website

Office in Charge: Culture and Arts Planning Section TEL: 075-366-0033




[City of Kyoto] Rohm Theatre Kyoto Opening Program   -Japanese Culture Through All the Senses “Creating Kagura”-

A village of children where the remote past, the present day, and the future are joined together is the scene of a modern kagura production from Kunio Sugihara with a script from Shinji Ishii. Blending the different realms of kyogen, koto music, drama, contemporary dance and more, this new work will be performed on November 26, 2016.


■ For Details: Kyoto Art Center website

■ For Inquiries: Kyoto Art Center  TEL 075-213-1000

     Culture and Arts Planning Section, Kyoto City Culture and Citizens Affairs Bureau  TEL 075-366-0033




[City of Kyoto] Public Opening of the Old Mitsui Family Shimogamo Villa (October 1 - )


The Old Mitsui Family Shimogamo Villa (formerly owned by the Mitsui family) was built by Mitsui Hachiro-emon-Takamine, the 10th heir of the Mitsui Kita family. The villa with its main building built in Kyoto during the modern period, and large scale residential complex from the Taisho period has been preserved in good condition, and was designated as an Important Cultural Property in 2011 for its great historical value. During the 2012 fiscal year, the villa began receiving a national subsidy, and full-scale repair and preservation work was carried out. The villa will be open to the public starting this October.       


■ Opening Date: October 1, 2016 (Sat)   ■ Time: 9am-5pm (Entry before 4:30pm)

■ Closed: Wednesday (if Wednesday is a public holiday, the villa will close on Thursday instead), December 29 through December 31  

■ Entry Fee: Adults 410 yen, Junior & High school students 300 yen, Elementary school students 200 yen

■ Inquiry: TEL 075-366-4321 (Management Office)   ■ Website

Cultural Properties Preservation Section, Culture and Arts City Promotion Office,

Culture and Citizens Affairs Bureau of Kyoto City (TEL 075-366-1498)





[City of Kyoto]  Opening of the “Mukashi Mukashi Aru Tokoro ni – Kyouzai toshite no Mukashibanashi” Exhibition


Momotaro is currently a well-known tale. It has often been featured in school textbooks and children’s books since 1887 (Meiji 20). Old tales, such as Momotaro, have been presented together with various artists’ charming illustrations, so that children can enjoy and feel a close connection while reading. This exhibition introduces various teaching materials featuring old tales as their subject matter. How did children receive these tales over the years? This exhibition takes a look back at these changes.  


Date: Fri October 7- Tue December 13, 2016

For more Details: (Japanese only)

Location & Inquiries: Kyoto Municipal Museum of School History TEL 075-344-1305 




[Yamanashi Prefecture] 4th Issue of Local PR Magazine “Yamanashi Tekuteku” Released


4th issue of “Yamanashi Tekuteku” has been released to introduce unique local resources and various attractions and charms of Yamanashi Prefecture in depth. In this issue, with the theme, “Creating New Possibilities: the Power of Japanese Washi Paper”, we look at the artisans of hand-made washi paper and the business people pursuing its new potential.


■URL:  (information available in Japanese only)

■Inquiries: Yamanashi Prefectural Government Public Relations Division 055-223-1339




[Chiba Prefecture ] Shuttle Bus Service from Narita Airport to Attractions in Chiba Prefecture


A new service will bring together Narita International Airport and various tourist sites in Chiba. Highway buses will run round-trip from Narita Airport along routes to Kamogawa and Choshi.  Buses will run from September 17th to October 31st. Home to abundant nature and a deep cultural heritage, with autumn comes delicious food and traditional festivals to Chiba.  Passengers traveling with Narita Airport can use the bus free of charge on the days they arrive at and depart from the airport. Take advantage of this special offer and experience the wonders of Chiba!


■Date: Saturday, September 17th–Monday, October 31st, 2016

■Routes and Bus Fare:  *All routes stop at all three terminals of Narita Airport.

①Narita Airport–Kamogawa (via Ohara, Onjuku, Katsuura), 1000 yen for adults

②Narita Airport– Choshi (via Sawara/via Asahi), 700 yen for adults

  *Half price for elementary school students.  Free for preschoolers.

  *Free for Passengers using Narita Airport on the day they arrive/depart

■Reservations: Advance booking is required on the following webpage:

■Inquiries:Chiba Prefecture Transportation Planning Division  

TEL: 043-223-2063  (Japanese only)  E-mail




 [Nara Prefecture] Bus Tour Packages to Experience Nara (for Foreign Tourists)


Nara prefecture offers paid bus tour packages for foreign travelers. The courses are best suited for those who want not just sightseeing, but also to experience something special with a professional tour guide.


①  Every Tuesday: Course A. Jiko-in Zen Temple and Scenic Sights in Nara in Season

Make matcha green tea and relax while viewing a beautiful Japanese garden.

②  Every Thursday: Course B. Taima-dera Temple and Sumo Experience

Enjoy tracing an image of Buddha, wearing mawashi and trying sumo wrestling in the ring.

③  Every Friday: Course C. Miwa and Asuka

Pick fruits in season, visit the birthplace of sake brewing, and enjoy tasting five kinds of sake at abrewery.


■ Media Inquiry: Nara Tourism Improvement Dept., Nara Prefectural Government  TEL: +81-742-27-8051




[Nara Prefecture] Tour of Nara Mahoroba 2016


The Tour of Nara Mahoroba is an annual cycling event that was started in 2013, in which participants canenjoy the nature and history of southern and eastern parts of Nara Prefecture. On Sunday, September 18, the 4th Tour of Nara Mahoroba will be held in Kokoro-no-mori Sogo Fukushi Koen (park) in Uda City as the main venue. It will include three events: Cycling Tour, Cycle Carnival, and the new event, Grass Cycle Race.


■Contact : Official website of the Tour of Nara Mahoroba

■Website :




【Kobe City】  19 non-Japanese Kobe PR Ambassador scheme


The Kobe PR Ambassadors are non-Japanese people who live, work or study in Kobe with a passion for the city, who share their experiences and promote Kobe in English via social media and online. Kobe PR Ambassador posts are shared through the official Kobe PR Ambassador Facebook and Twitter accounts.


■ Ambassador profiles:

■Official accounts: FB  Twitter
■Contact Details:Kobe City Government PR Department     

TEL: 078-322-5013   FAX: 078-322-6007   email:




【Chiba Prefecture】  Four Cities in the Hokuso Region Designated “Japan Heritage” Sites


 The story, “An Edo Travelogue through Four Hokuso Cities(Sakura City, Narita City, Katori City, Choshi City): Feel the Edo Period in Hokuso Townscapes”, which encompasses the cultural assets of four cities and retains the atmosphere of the Edo Period, has been recognized as the first “Japan Heritage” site in Chiba. From the Edo Period to the Meiji Period, these four cities supported the lifestyle and economy of Edo (now Tokyo), which was home to over 1 million people at the time. This history remains in places like the samurai residence in Sakura City, the road to Naritasan Shinsho-ji Temple in Narita City, the merchant town in Sawara(Katori City), and the Tokawa Fishing Port in Choshi City. Even today, visitors to these cities can feel like they’ve traveled to the Edo Period.


■Japan Heritage: Places rich in local history and character that help tell the story of Japanese culture and tradition recognized by the Agency for Cultural Affairs.


(information available in Japanese only)

■Inquiries: Chiba Prefectural Board of Education, Cultural Education and Properties Division

TEL:043-223-4082   E-mail




【Kagawa Prefecture】 The Announcement of the Launch of the Website


G7 ICT Ministers’ Meeting was successfully held on 29th and 30th April 2016 in Takamatsu City, Kagawa Prefecture. Through this experience, we will promote and develop our ICT policy further, and try to increase the number of tourists and visitors and stimulate regional communities through an international MICE promotion policy. We would like to introduce our website which contains the attractions of Takamatsu, Kagawa along with what’s happened at the ICT ministers’ meeting.


■ URL:

■ For further information: Exchange Promotion Division, Kagawa Prefectural Government

   TEL: (087)-832-3380  E-mail:




 【Chiba Prefecture】    Multilingual Guides for Shopping and Eating


Chiba City, where seven events of the 2020 Tokyo Olympic and Paralympic Games will take place, has created a multilingual website called the Chiba Omotenashi Shopping Guide to make eating, shopping, and visiting Chiba City a smoother experience for tourists who don’t speak Japanese. Visitors can browse the list of stores, or search for what they want, such as vegetarian and halal options, and also use a foreign language point-and-speak guide. With these resources in their repertoire, vendors can show tourists Chiba City hospitality despite language barriers.


■Languages:  Japanese, English, Korean, Simplified and Traditional Chinese, German, French, Italian, Spanish, Russian, Thai, Indonesian, Vietnamese, Malay,  Arabic  (15 languages )



Chiba City Tourism Promotion Division  TEL: 043-245-5066

Chiba Prefecture, International Affairs Division  TEL: 043-223-2255   E-mail:




【Yamanashi Prefecture】 Fujisan World Heritage Center Will Open on June 22nd, 2016.


Fujisan World Heritage Center will open on June 22nd as the source of information about Mt. Fuji, the World Cultural Heritage Site. At the center of the museum, 1/1000-scaled paper object of Mt. Fuji has been installed so the different colorful scenery of Mt. Fuji can be projected on it. We also introduce the beginning of Mt. Fuji, the history of the mountain worship, art and literary works inspired by Mt. Fuji, and so on.


■ Opening hours 8:30 am – 5:00 pm    *It may change during summer season. Museum is closed on 4th Tuesday every month.

■ Admission JPY420 per adult.

■ Address 6663-1, Funatsu, Fujikawaguchiko-machi, Minami-tsuru-gun, Yamanashi Pref.

■ Website

■ Inquiry

Yamanashi Pref. World Heritage Mt. Fuji Division: +81-(0)-55-223-1316

Fujisan World Heritage Center: +81-(0)-555-72-2314




[Chiba Prefecture]  Enhancing the image of Chiba Prefecture through video


Chiba Prefecture has produced a video introducing the prefecture in order to attract training camps and invite more foreign tourists for the upcoming 2020 Olympic and Paralympic Games in Tokyo. In each of the two versions (30 seconds long and 2 minutes long), seasonal images of Japanese beauty—spring cherry blossoms, summer fireworks, autumn festivals, and so on—are accompanied by music. The videos are available on the Chiba Prefectural website.


■Chiba Prefecture PR video:


Chiba Prefecture Government Office, Press and Public Relations Division

TEL: 043-223-2265  FAX: 043-227-0146




【Kyoto City】First in Japan! Foreigner-Friendly Taxi Stand trial has started!


The Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism in cooperation with the taxi industry has established Foreigner-Friendly Taxi stands in Kyoto at the JR Kyoto Station Central Entrance (available 9:00am-5:00pm) and at the Shinkansen Hachijo Entrance (available 24hrs).


All drivers of the Foreigner-Friendly Taxi have had training in foreign languages; the taxis accept credit cards and IC cards, and have enough space for more than 2 suitcases. No additional fee is required.


Although the taxis give priority to foreigners, they are also available for people with large luggage and others. 



■For inquiries:Tourism and MICE Promotion Office, Industry and Tourism Bureau, Kyoto City

TEL: 075-746-2255




【Yamanashi Prefecture】Smartphone Tourism App “FUJISAN ACITIVITIES” Available for Foreigners


In order to assist visitors to enjoy beautiful nature Yamanashi has to offer including Mt. Fuji and experience various programs, we have started smartphone tourism app. It provides information of tourist spots with pictures, navigation function with travel times and routes, and information on free Wi-Fi spots around the area (Supported OS:i OS, Android OS, free of charge).


■ Name:「FUJISAN ACTIVITIES」Yamanashi Official Guide by NAVITIME

■ Languages:Japanese, English, Chinese (Traditional and Simplified), Korean, Thai, Indonesian

■ Main Services:Information on tourist spots, nearby facilities information (free Wi-Fi spots, ATM, and information centers), navigation functions, tourism brochures, and language assistance 

■ Download URL   iOS:

Android OS:

 ■Inquiries: Yamanashi Prefectural Tourism Department Tourism Promotion Division 055-223-1557




【Oita Prefecture】 Synchronized Swimming in Hot Springs? A New PR Video is Launched !


Oita Prefecture, which takes first place in Japan with both its number of hot springs and volume of spring water,  has released a new promotional video, “SHINFURO: Synchronized Swimming in Hot Springs”, combining Japanese hot springs and synchronized swimming.


■ Onsen Capital Oita Website:



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