Kumamoto Prefecture extends from the west coast to the center of mainland Kyushu. Once the prosperous stronghold of a powerful feudal lord, its history and tradition are still instilled in Kumamoto's character as a culturally advanced Japanese prefecture.

Kumamoto City`s prosperity began when Kiyomasa Kato, one of the most influential of Hideyoshi Toyotomi's generals, had a magnificent castle built here in 1601. The city was later granted by the Tokugawa Shogunate to the feudal lord Tadatoshi Hosokawa. Throughout the Edo Era, Kumamoto prospered under the rule of successive generations of the Hosokawa family. After the Meiji Restoration, when Japan moved toward modernization and democratization, samurai warriors who resisted the new order fought their last battle in Kumamoto.

Kumamoto is often called the "forested city." The many trees in every neighborhood of this lovely city help create and maintain its fresh and pleasant atmosphere. The prefecture has two extremely scenic national parks of its own. Since ancient days Kumamoto Prefecture has been called the "Land of Fire" because it contains twin-coned volcanic Mt. Aso. Its southwestern sector contains much striking coastline and the 120 or so islands of the Amakusa chain.

Transportation to Kumamoto There are 8 flights daily on ANA, JAL, and JAS from Tokyo which reach Kumamoto in 1 hr. 40 min., and 5 flights daily on ANA from Osaka that arrive in 1 hr. 5 min., from there downtown is a 54 min bus ride. By train, Kumamoto is accessed by Shinkansen through Hakata, where you must transfer to a Limited Express for the final 1 hr. 30 min. journey to Kumamoto.

Places of Interest in Kumamoto Prefecture

Kumamoto City

Located in the center of Kyushu, with a population of 630,000, Kumamoto City is the capital of Kumamoto Prefecture, forming the nucleus of the island in politics, commerce and culture along with Fukuoka. With many green groves and delicately executed gardens, Kumamoto has been a thriving castle town for centuries. It has now developed into a modern metropolis, its broad streets lined with high-rise buildings. JR Kumamoto Station is secluded from the city's downtown, but thanks to the No. 2 streetcar, it is quite easy to reach the downtown area from the Station. The downtown area is located to the south of Kumamotojo Castle. Kurnamotojo Castle is the major attraction in Kumamoto, and is easily accessible by streetcar (Kumamotojo-mae stop). The information Office is located at JR Kumamoto Station.

Tourist Information
Kumamoto City Tourist Information Desk: Tel: (096)352-3743
Kumamoto Airport Information Office: Tel: (096)232-2810

Sightseeing In Kumamoto

Places of Interest Around Kumamoto Prefecture