is a prefecture
located on Kyūshū Island
. The prefectural capital is the city of Ōita
After the Meiji Restoration
and southern Buzen
Provinces were combined to form Ōita Prefecture: These provinces were divided among many local daimyo
and thus a large castle town never formed in Ōita.
Ōita Prefecture is located on the north-eastern coast of the island of Kyūshū. Surrounded by the Suo Channel and Honshū Island to the north, the Iyo Channel and Shikoku Island to the east, it is bordered by Miyazaki Prefecture to the south, and Fukuoka Prefecture and Kumamoto Prefecture to the west.
Ōita Prefecture is almost entirely covered by mountains and has only narrow coastal plains.
Currently, the Prefecture has 14 cities, 3 districts, 3 towns, and one village.
From 2005 to 2006, all municipalities but Beppu, Tsukumi, Himejima, Hinode, and all towns in Kusu District, merged, and the total municipalities went down from 58 on December 31
, to 18 after the creation of the city of Kunisaki by merging with 4 towns from Higashikunisaki District on March 31
. It will make the prefecture with less municipalities within Kyūshū, and fourth least in Japan. However, Oita Prefecture now has the fewest towns (3) and fewest towns and villages combined (4) all over Japan.
Towns and villages
Mergers and dissolutions
If the district dissolved, then the link will be in place.
- Hayami District: Yamaga
- Higashikunisaki District: Aki, Kunimi, Kunisaki, Musashi
- Ōno District: Notsu, Asaji, Chitose, Inukai, Kiyokawa, Mie, Ogata, Ōno
- Ōita District: Notsuharu, Hasama, Shonai, Yufuin
- Kitaamabe District: Saganoseki
- Shimoge District: Hon'yabakei, Sanko, Yabakei, Yamakuni
- Minamiamabe District: Honjō, Kamae, Kamiura, Naokawa, Tsurumi, Ume, Yayoi, Yonōzu
- Hita District: Amagase, Kamitsue, Maetsue, Nakatsue,
- Usa District: Ajimu, Innai
- Nishikunisaki District: Kakadi, Matama, Ōta
- Naoiri District: Kuju, Naoiri, Ogi
Oita Prefecture is known for its production of kabosu
(a kind of citrus fruit) as well as its horsemeat.
Economic development of Oita was greatly aided by the One Village One Product movement of long-time governor Morihiko Hiramatsu.
The sports teams listed below are based in Oita.
Ōita Prefecture is famous for its hot springs, particularly those in and around the city of Beppu
, known as the 'hells', or jigoku
. Many are of tourist interest only and cannot be used as onsen
(notably the Blood Pond Hell
(reddish water) and the Oniyama Hell). The city's ryokans
and public onsen are amply supplied by the same volcanic source. Visitors particularly relish the effects of burial in steaming hot volcanic sands.
Beppu offers a wide range of cultural experiences, from an annual international music festival, to the unabashed Hihokan Sex Museum.
The elaborate public aquarium "Umi-tamago" on the shoreline outside Beppu features basketballing sea otters, performing archer fish, and puzzle-solving octopuses, along with more naturalistic displays of freshwater and marine fish from around the world.
Near the marine park, Mount Takasaki Monkey Park rises steeply from the shoreline. Two distinct troupes of wild macaque monkeys make regular visits to the feeding grounds here, which were initially established to entice the monkeys away from raiding the region's fruit crops, a behaviour that brought them into conflict with farmers. The wild macaques ignore the small crowds that gather at these feeding sessions, and may be observed at close quarters.
Beppu is a busy passenger port with regular ferry links through the inland sea to Osaka and several other destinations.
Other attractions of Ōita Prefecture include the Sanrio theme park Harmonyland.
Ōita's Mt. Hachimen is also home to the popular music festival, Concert on the Rock. This annual charity event sees over 30 international acts performing over a June weekend for the pleasure of Japan's music lovers. The natural surroundings make it one of the most picturesque rock festivals in the world.
, once governor of the Bank of Japan
from 1898 to 1903, was from here.