|Subdivisions||Districts: 9, Municipalities: 45|
|• Governor||Ikuo Kabashima|
|• Total||7,409.48 km2 (2,860.82 sq mi)|
(June 1, 2019)
|• Density||240/km2 (610/sq mi)|
|ISO 3166 code||JP-43|
Kumamoto Prefecture (熊本県, Kumamoto-ken) is a prefecture of Japan located on the island of Kyūshū. Kumamoto Prefecture has a population of 1,748,134 (1 June 2019) and has a geographic area of 7,409 km² (2,860 sq mi). Kumamoto Prefecture borders Fukuoka Prefecture to the north, Ōita Prefecture to the northeast, Miyazaki Prefecture to the southeast, and Kagoshima Prefecture to the south.
Kumamoto is the capital and largest city of Kumamoto Prefecture, with other major cities including Yatsushiro, Amakusa, and Tamana. Kumamoto Prefecture is located in the center of Kyūshū on the coast of the Ariake Sea, across from Nagasaki Prefecture, with the mainland separated from the East China Sea by the Amakusa Archipelago. Kumamoto Prefecture is home to Mount Aso, the largest active volcano in Japan and among the largest in the world, with its peak 1,592 metres (5,223 ft) above sea level.
Historically, the area was called Higo Province; and the province was renamed Kumamoto during the Meiji Restoration. The creation of prefectures was part of the abolition of the feudal system. The current Japanese orthography for Kumamoto literally means "bear root/origin", or "origin of the bear".
Kumamoto Prefecture is in the center of Kyushu, the southernmost of the four major Japanese islands. It is bordered by the Ariake inland sea and the Amakusa archipelago to the west, Fukuoka Prefecture and Ōita Prefecture to the north, Miyazaki Prefecture to the east, and Kagoshima Prefecture to the south.
As of 31 March 2019, 21% of the total land area of the prefecture was designated as natural parks: the Aso Kujū and Unzen-Amakusa National Parks; Kyūshū Chūō Sanchi and Yaba-Hita-Hikosan Quasi-National Parks; and Ashikita Kaigan, Itsuki Gokanoshō, Kinpōzan, Misumi-Ōyano Umibe, Okukuma, Shōtaisan, and Yabe Shūhen Prefectural Natural Parks.
Fourteen cities are located in Kumamoto Prefecture:
Towns and villages
These are the towns and villages in each district:
The population was on 1 June 2019 at 1,748,134 inhabitants with a population density of 236 per km ². The prefecture ranks 23rd in Japan.
There is a Honda motorcycle plant.
- Mount Aso is one of the world's largest active volcanoes.
- Kumamoto Castle
- Suizenji Park
- Tsūjun Bridge, the largest stone aqueduct in Japan is in Yamato
- Kumamoto Gakuen University
- Kyushu University of Nursing and Social Welfare
- Kyushu Lutheran College
- Kumamoto Health Science
- Shokei Gakuin University
- Sojo University
- Heisei College of Music
- JR Kyushu
- Kumamoto Electric Railway
- Kumagawa Railroad
- South Aso Railway
- Hisatsu Orange Railway
Expressways and toll roads
- Route 3
- Route 57
- Route 208 (Kumamoto-Tamana-Arao-Ōmuta)
- Route 212
- Route 218 (Kumamoto-Takachiho-Nobeoka)
- Route 219
- Route 265
- Route 266
- Route 267 (Hitoyoshi-Isa-Satsuma-Satsumasendai)
- Route 268
- Route 324
- Route 325 (Yamaga-Minamiaso-Takamori-Takachiho)
- Route 387
- Route 388 (Saiki-Nobeoka-Unomae)
- Route 389
- Route 442
- Route 443
- Route 445
- Route 501 (Ōmuta-Arao-Udo)
- Route 503
- Ushibuka-Kuranomoto (Nagashima)
These sports teams are based in the prefecture:
- Kumamoto Golden Larks - regional baseball
Kumamoto Prefecture is the 'sister state/prefecture' of Montana in the United States.
Kumamoto has a sister city located in Texas named San Antonio, which holds an annual fall festival 'akimatsuri' for its Japanese citizens. In 2015 the mascot, 'Kumamon' visited as an honorary ambassador during the festival located at the Japanese Tea Gardens.
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- Jun Kunimura, a popular Japanese actor
- Tetsu Komai, a Hollywood actor
- Kazuaki Kiriya, a filmmaker
- Kimeru, a pop artist
- Miku Kobato, founder and vocalist of Band-Maid
- Moe Kamikokuryou, a Japanese idol
- Yuri Masuda, singer
- Shodai Naoya, Sumo wrestler
- Tomiko Van, singer, vocalist of Do As Infinity
- Eiichiro Oda, manga author, creator of One Piece
- Tetsuya Noda, contemporary artist
- Katsuhiro Ueo, drifting driver
- Ichiki Tatsuo, journalist and defector in the Indonesian National Revolution
- Madoka Hisagae, female Japanese fencer
- Hitomi Tanaka, pornographic actress
- Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Kumamoto prefecture" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 572, p. 572, at Google Books.
- Nussbaum, "Kumamoto" in p. 572, p. 572, at Google Books.
- Nussbaum, "Provinces and prefectures" in p. 780, p. 780, at Google Books.
- 自然公園都道府県別面積総括 [General overview of area figures for Natural Parks by prefecture] (PDF) (in Japanese). Ministry of the Environment. 31 March 2019. Retrieved 3 August 2019.
- The Life and Times of Japan's Mascots
- "Top Ten Japanese Character Mascots". Finding Fukuoka. 2012-01-13. Retrieved 2013-02-16.
- JpopAsia. "Miku (BAND-MAID) | JpopAsia". JpopAsia. Retrieved 2018-03-11.
- "Eiichiro Oda, Hajime Isayama Show Their Support After Kumamoto Earthquakes". Anime News Network. Retrieved 2018-03-11.
- "Hitomi at AV Idol Directory". in Japanese
- Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric and Käthe Roth. (2005). Japan encyclopedia. Cambridge: Harvard University Press. ISBN 978-0-674-01753-5; OCLC 58053128
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Kumamoto prefecture.|
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