The prefecture is landlocked, featuring a fertile central valley, the Kōfu Basin, surrounded by many of the highest mountains in Japan including the highest, Mount Fuji located on the southern border with Shizuoka.
|Subdivisions||Districts: 5, Municipalities: 27|
|• Governor||Kotaro Nagasaki (from February 2019)|
|• Total||4,465.27 km2 (1,724.05 sq mi)|
(January 1, 2019)
|• Density||183/km2 (470/sq mi)|
|ISO 3166 code||JP-19|
|Bird||Uguisu (bush warbler)|
|Flower||Fujizakura (Fuji cherry)|
|Tree||Kaede (Japanese maple)|
As in most other Japanese regions, prehistoric society in Yamanashi progressed though the hunting, fishing and gathering stage of the Jōmon period, then the rice-producing stage of the Yayoi period and subsequent village and regional formation. The Maruyama and Choshizuka Kofun (earthen burial mounds) located on Sone Hill of Nakamichi Town (Southern Kōfu) are believed to have been built from the end of the 4th century. From these remains it can be assumed that the people of Sone Hill had great influence.
Among the many Kaigenji generations, those of the Takeda, Ogasawara, and Nanbu families were particularly prosperous. During the Sengoku period of the 16th century, Takeda Shingen attained the status of daimyō and built Tsuzuji Mansion and the Yōgai Castle in Kōfu. From this base, he attempted to unify and control Japan.
After Takeda's death in 1582, Kai-no-Kuni came under the control of the Oda and Toyotomi clans before being subsumed into the Tokugawa shogunate during the Edo period. Beneath the Edo shogunate, the Kōfu clan (based in Kuninaka, or Central and Western Yamanashi) and the Yamura clan (based in Gunnai, or Eastern Yamanashi) were formed, but in 1724 the area came under the direct control of the Shogunate. With the development of the Kōshū Kaidō (highway) and Fuji River transport, goods, materials and culture flowed into the region.
By the mid-19th century, the contradictions of military government and clan system caused stability to erode and resistance to erupt across Japan, paving the way for the Meiji Restoration of 1868.
During the Boshin War, the Battle of Kōshū-Katsunuma on the 29 March 1868 was a significant battle between pro-Imperial and Tokugawa shogunate forces immediately prior to the Imperial Forces march on Edo Castle. Preceding the Kōshū-Katsunuma battle, Kōfu Castle had been captured by troops loyal to the Emperor Meiji.
The province was renamed Kōfu Prefecture in 1869 and then Yamanashi Prefecture in 1871. The anniversary of this event on November 20, 1872, is now celebrated as Prefectural Citizen's Day in Yamanashi.
In the early part of the Meiji period (1868–1911), industrial promotion policies furthered sericulture, silk textile production and wine making industries. In 1903, after seven years of construction, including the building of a nearly three mile long tunnel at the Sasago Pass, the Chūō Railway Line from Hachiōji and central Tokyo finally reached Kōfu. The reduced journey times to the capital and the port of Yokohama brought significant change to local industry and culture.
Agricultural production in farming communities was still on a small scale at the turn of the century and land reforms had yet to be introduced. From the 1920s however, tenancy and contract disputes between landowners and farmers in Yamanashi grew increasingly common.
In 1926, the Minobu Railway Line connecting Kōfu with Shizuoka Prefecture opened, bringing an end to Fuji River transportation. The Koumi Line connecting Kobuchizawa to Kiyosato was opened by Japanese National Railways (JNR) in 1933, providing access to hitherto remote highland areas on the slopes of Mt. Yatsugatake in the North of the prefecture. ....
The capital city, Kōfu, suffered extensive damage during a major air raid on the night of 6 July 1945. From 1945 onwards, as part of economic initiatives introduced under the post war Government of Occupation, agricultural land reforms significantly increased the number of individual farms and promoted fruit farming and viticulture throughout the prefecture. At first with limited success in 1946, but on a much more sustained basis in 1951, dairy farming, introduced by American Paul Rusch, became a feature of highland pastures surrounding the town of Kiyosato.
Small scale manufacturing industries and commerce grew at rapid speed during the expansion of the post-war Japanese economy. The 1982 opening of the Chūō Expressway also led to significant growth in service industries, transport logistics and tourism.
In common with many similar sized cities during the 1990s, rapid growth in car ownership, out of town shopping, and improved transportation links to Tokyo, caused a drop in commercial activity and land values in the center of the prefectural capital Kōfu. To counterbalance this trend the prefectural government launched a city center revitalization plan in 2008, promoting downtown tourist attractions such as redeveloped land North of Kōfu station, Maizuru Castle Park and new residential, cultural and government office facilities.
Planned changes in transportation infrastructure also promise to significantly impact the Yamanashi economy in the coming decades; under mountains in the eastern part of the prefecture is a completed 42.8 km section of the SCMaglev test track, a section of the planned Chūō Shinkansen.
Central Government permission to proceed with an extension to the existing test track was granted on May 27, 2011. At the end of 2013 construction was already well advanced as far as Fuefuki.
JR Central is considering opening a demonstration service from a new station in Kōfu by the 2020 Summer Olympics so that visitors can also ride on the experimental track through the Yamanashi mountains.
Yamanashi Prefecture is bordered by Tokyo, Kanagawa Prefecture, Saitama Prefecture, Shizuoka Prefecture, and Nagano Prefecture. The prefecture is landlocked, with high mountains surrounding the central Kōfu Basin. Mount Fuji and the Fuji Five Lakes region is located on the southern border with Shizuoka. Mt. Fuji provides rain shadow effects, and as a result, the prefecture receives only about 818 mm of rainfall a year.
As of April 1, 2012, 27% of the total land area of the prefecture was designated as Natural Parks, namely the Chichibu Tama Kai, Fuji-Hakone-Izu, and Minami Alps National Parks; Yatsugatake-Chūshin Kōgen Quasi-National Park; and Minami Alps Koma and Shibireko Prefectural Natural Parks.
78% of the prefecture is covered by forests, making it one of the most densely wooded prefectures in Japan. Land cultivated for agriculture is mainly restricted to the lower elevations of the Kōfu basin.
Thirteen cities are located in Yamanashi Prefecture:
These are the towns and villages in each district:
|Katsuyasu Yoshie (吉江勝保)||12 April 1947||29 April 1951|
|Hisashi Amano (天野久)||30 April 1951||16 February 1967|
|Kunio Tanabe (田辺国男)||17 February 1967||16 February 1979|
|Komei Mochizuki (望月幸明)||17 February 1979||16 February 1991|
|Ken Amano (天野建)||17 February 1991||16 February 2003|
|Takahiko Yamamoto (山本栄彦)||17 February 2003||16 February 2007|
|Shōmei Yokouchi (横内 正明)||17 February 2007||16 February 2015|
|Hitoshi Goto (後藤 斎)||17 February 2015||16 February 2019|
|Kotaro Nagasaki (長崎幸太郎)||17 February 2019||Present|
Yamanashi has a sizable industrial base in and around Kōfu city, with jewelry and robotics industries being particularly prominent. The headquarters of FANUC, the leading global manufacturer of factory automation systems, is based in Oshino in the south of the prefecture.
The prefecture is also host to numerous fruit farms and vineyards. Yamanashi is one of the major fruit producing regions in Japan, being the top domestic producer of grapes, peaches, plums, as well as wine.
In addition, roughly 40% of the mineral water bottled in Japan comes from Yamanashi, mainly from around the Southern Alps, Mt. Fuji, and Mitsutōge areas. The quality of the water sources in the Southern Alps prompted Suntory Group to open the Hakushu distillery in the northern Yamanashi town of Hokuto.
The natural scenery and cultural sights of Yamanashi are popular destinations for both domestic and international tourists due to the prefecture's proximity to the crowded Tokyo conurbation and ease of access by road and rail. Mount Fuji, the Fuji Five Lakes region, the highland resort region of Kiyosato, the city of Kōfu, the Senga Falls, Koshu wineries, the temple of Erin-ji in Koshu, and the Kuonji Temple at Minobu are a few of the most popular places to visit.
The natural topography of the region makes Yamanashi popular with mountaineering, hiking and climbing enthusiasts throughout the year. The highest mountain in Japan, Mount Fuji, at 3,776 m (12,388 ft) and the second highest mountain in Japan, Mount Kita, at 3,193 m (10,476 ft) are both located within Yamanashi. The Mt. Fuji summer hiking season in July and August attracts thousands of overnight hikers typically starting at the Fifth Station in the late evening and climbing through the night to witness the sunrise at the summit.
Although not as tall, Mount Minobu, a popular place for Buddhist pilgrimage, offers extensive views from the summit of the mountain. Parts of the Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, Chichibu-Tama-Kai National Park, and Minami Alps National Park are all located in Yamanashi.
Given the area's volcanic activity, natural hot springs, or onsens, are found in abundance. Some of the more well known are Shimobe Onsen, Isawa Onsen and Yamanami Onsen.
Aokigahara (青木ヶ原), also known as the Sea of Trees (樹海, Jukai) or the Suicide Forest, is a forest on the northwestern flank of Japan's Mount Fuji, thriving on 30 square kilometres (12 sq mi) of hardened lava laid down by the last major eruption of Mount Fuji in 864 CE. The western edge of Aokigahara, where there are several caves that fill with ice in winter, is a popular destination for tourists and school trips. Parts of Aokigahara are very dense, and the porous lava absorbs sound, helping to provide visitors with a sense of solitude.The forest has an historical reputation as a home to yūrei: ghosts of the dead in Japanese mythology. In recent years, Aokigahara has become internationally known as "the Suicide Forest", one of the world's most prevalent suicide sites, and signs at the head of some trails urge suicidal visitors to think of their families and contact a suicide prevention association.Fujikyuko Line
The Fujikyuko Line (富士急行線, Fuji-Kyūkō-sen) is a Japanese private railway line in Yamanashi Prefecture, between Ōtsuki Station in Ōtsuki and Kawaguchiko Station in Fujikawaguchiko. It is the only railway line operated by Fuji Kyuko.
The railway line officially consists of the Ōtsuki Line (大月線, Ōtsuki-sen) and Kawaguchiko Line (河口湖線, Kawaguchiko-sen), but the two lines are operated as one. The line can be traced back to the Tsuru Horse-drawn Tramway (都留馬車鉄道) which began operation in 1900.Fujisankei Classic
The Fujisankei Classic (フジサンケイクラシック, Fuji sankei kurashikku) is an annual golf event on the Japan Golf Tour. It was first played in 1973 on the Takasaka Country Club - Yoneyama Course. The tournament moved to the Higashi-Matsuyama Golf Club in 1979 and to the Kawana Hotel's Fuji course in 1981. The tournament has been held at the Fujizakura Country Club in Yamanashi Prefecture since 2005. The prize fund in 2017 was ¥110,000,000, with ¥22,000,000 going to the winner. The title sponsor is the Fujisankei Communications Group.Izuru Narushima
Izuru Narushima (成島 出, Narushima Izuru, born 1961) is a Japanese scriptwriter and film director from Yamanashi Prefecture. In 2011, his film Rebirth was awarded the Japanese Academy Prize for best picture.Kai Province
Kai Province (甲斐国, Kai-no-kuni) was a province of Japan in the area of Japan that is today Yamanashi Prefecture. Kai bordered on Sagami, Suruga, Shinano and Musashi Provinces. Its abbreviated form name was Kōshū (甲州). The origin of its name is uncertain. It lies in central Honshū, west of Tokyo, in a landlocked mountainous region that includes Mount Fuji along its border with modern Shizuoka Prefecture.Kōfu
Kōfu (甲府市, Kōfu-shi, Japanese: [ko̞ːɸɯᵝ]) is the capital city of Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. As of 1 April 2019, the city had an estimated population of 187,985 in 90,924 households , and a population density of 880 persons per km2. The total area of the city is 212.41 square kilometres (82.01 sq mi). Kōfu's name means "capital of Kai Province". During the Sengoku period, it was famous as the stronghold of Takeda Shingen.Kōfu Station
Kōfu Station (甲府駅, Kōfu-eki) is the main railway station in the city of Kōfu, Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. It is managed by the East Japan Railway Company (JR East).List of mergers in Yamanashi Prefecture
Here is a list of mergers in Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan since the Heisei era.Maizuru Castle Park
Maizuru Castle Park is a park and historical site in Kofu, Yamanashi, Japan. It contains the ruins of Kōfu Castle (甲府城, Kōfu-jō), also called Maizuru Castle, which is about 400 years old and has been designated as a Yamanashi Historical Site. Maizuru Castle Park is a place of rest and relaxation for the people of Yamanashi Prefecture.Mount Daibosatsu
Mount Daibosatsu (大菩薩嶺) stands in the Yamanashi side of Chichibu-Tama-Kai National Park. The peak itself is in Kōshū, Yamanashi. It is 2,057 metres (6,749 ft) high. Daibosatsu Pass divides Kōshū from Kosuge Village. Trails lead to the top from Kōshū, Tabayama, and Kosuge.Daibosatsu is one of the 100 Famous Mountains of Japan.Mount Fuji
Mount Fuji (富士山, Fujisan, IPA: [ɸɯꜜdʑisaɴ] (listen)), located on Honshū, is the highest volcano in Japan at 3,776.24 m (12,389 ft), 2nd-highest volcano of an island in Asia (after Mount Kerinci in Sumatra), and 7th-highest peak of an island in the world. It is a dormant stratovolcano that last erupted in 1707–1708. Mount Fuji lies about 100 kilometers (60 mi) south-west of Tokyo, and can be seen from there on a clear day. Mount Fuji's exceptionally symmetrical cone, which is snow-capped for about 5 months a year, is commonly used as a symbol of Japan and it is frequently depicted in art and photographs, as well as visited by sightseers and climbers.Mount Fuji is one of Japan's "Three Holy Mountains" (三霊山, Sanreizan) along with Mount Tate and Mount Haku. It is also a Special Place of Scenic Beauty and one of Japan's Historic Sites. It was added to the World Heritage List as a Cultural Site on June 22, 2013. According to UNESCO, Mount Fuji has "inspired artists and poets and been the object of pilgrimage for centuries". UNESCO recognizes 25 sites of cultural interest within the Mount Fuji locality. These 25 locations include the mountain and the Shinto shrine, Fujisan Hongū Sengen Taisha, as well as the Buddhist Taisekiji Head Temple founded in 1290, later immortalized by Japanese ukiyo-e artist Katsushika Hokusai.Mount Kaikoma
Mount Kaikoma (甲斐駒ヶ岳, Kaikoma-ga-take) is a mountain of the Akaishi Mountains, located on the border of Hokuto in Yamanashi Prefecture, and Ina in Nagano Prefecture, in the Chūbu region of Japan.Mount Kinpu
Mount Kinpu (金峰山, Kinpu-san), or Mount Kinpō (金峰山, Kinpō-san) is a mountain of the Okuchichibu Mountains, and located on the boundary of Nagano Prefecture and Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan.
It is one of the 100 Famous Japanese Mountains. At 2599m tall, it is the second highest peak of the Okuchichibu Mountains.Sagami River
The Sagami River (相模川, Sagamigawa) is a river in Kanagawa and Yamanashi Prefectures on the island of Honshū, Japan.
The upper reaches of the river in Yamanashi prefecture are also sometimes known as the Katsura River (桂川, Katsuragawa), and the portion near the river mouth as the Banyu River (馬入川, Banyugawa). The river overall was sometimes referred to as the Ayu River (鮎川, Ayugawa) from the sweetfish (ayu) which were once abundant in its waters.
The Sagami River drains Lake Yamanaka, the largest and easternmost of the Fuji Five Lakes in Yamanashi Prefecture. It loops northwest, then northeast through Yamanashi, before following a generally southerly course to exit into Sagami Bay of the Pacific Ocean between the cities of Hiratsuka and Chigasaki. It is dammed at several locations along the way, forming a number of reservoir lakes, the largest of which are Lake Sagami and Lake Tsukui.
The river has had to re-cut its course several times due to repeated eruptions of Mount Fuji, and river terraces are in evidence along its upper reaches in Yamanashi. As the river crosses Kanagawa, it forms natural levees in the soft soils of the alluvial plains of central Kanagawa's Sagamino plateau, and forms almost no river delta as it exits into the ocean.
The potential of the upper reaches of the Sagami River for hydroelectric power development began to be developed in the 1930s, with the growth of industry and electrical consumption in the Yokohama-Kanagawa industrial belt, and the growing need for a reliable supply of drinking and industrial water. Work on the Sagami Dam began in 1938; however, lack of funding and the advent of World War II delayed completion until after the end of the war. In the post war period, the Shiroyama Dam was also completed on the main stream of the Sagami River in 1965. A number of dams have also been completed on the Nakatsu River, the main tributary of the Sagami River, including the Miyagase Dam.Southern Yatsugatake Volcanic Group
Southern Yatsugatake Volcanic Group (南八ヶ岳, Minami-Yatsugatake), also just Yatsugatake is a volcanic group of inactive volcanoes located on the border of Nagano Prefecture and Yamanashi Prefecture on Honshū in Japan.Yamanashi, Yamanashi
Yamanashi (山梨市, Yamanashi-shi) is a city located in Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. As of 1 July 2019, the city had an estimated population of 34,738 in 14,679 households , and a population density of 120 persons per km². The total area of the city is 289.80 square kilometres (111.89 sq mi).Yamanashi 1st district
Yamanashi 1st district (山梨[県第]1区, Yamanashi[-ken dai-]ikku) is a single-member electoral district for the House of Representatives, the lower house of the National Diet of Japan. It covers Northern Yamanashi, namely the capital Kōfu (without the former municipalities of Nakamichi and Kamikuishiki), the cities of Yamanashi and Kōshū and the former town of Kasugai in today's Fuefuki City. As of September 2012, 218,115 voters were registered in the district, giving its voters one of the highest vote weights in the country.Before the introduction of single-member districts in the 1990s, all of Yamanashi had formed one At-large district that elected five members to the House of Representatives. After the last House of Representatives election under the old system in 1993, Representatives from Yamanashi included Liberal Democrat Eiichi Nakao, Socialist Azuma Koshiishi and reformist Sakihito Ozawa. Nakao and Koshiishi contested the new 1st district in 1996: Nakao won. Koshiishi was elected to the Diet in the 1998 election to represent Yamanashi in the House of Councillors. In the 2000 Representatives election, Ozawa challenged Nakao and unseated him. He held onto the seat until 2012 when he joined the Japan Restoration Party and lost the district to Liberal Democratic newcomer Noriko Miyagawa, a former junior high school teacher.Yamanashi Chuo Bank Stadium
Yamanashi Chuo Bank Stadium (山梨中銀スタジアム) is a multi-purpose stadium in Kōfu, Yamanashi Prefecture, Japan. It is currently used mostly for football matches. It serves as a home ground of Ventforet Kofu. The stadium holds 17,000 people and was built in 1985.
It is also used sometimes for Top League rugby union games and frequently for high school athletics events.
It was formerly known as Kose Sports Park Stadium. Since March 2011 it has been called Yamanashi Chuo Bank Stadium for the naming rights.Yū Suzunoki
Yū Suzunoki (Japanese: 鈴ノ木ユウ, Hepburn: Suzunoki Yū, born September 4, 1973 in Kōfu, Yamanashi, Japan) is a Japanese manga artist and singer-songwriter. His real name is Yūki Suzunoki (鈴木祐樹, Suzunoki Yūki). He is married to singer Reina Hayashi—a member of Mimizuguzu—and lives in Nakano, Tokyo.
He won the 2016 Kodansha Manga Award for his manga Kōnodori.