Honshu: Japan's Main Island
The island of Honshu consists of 5 regions.
Chugoku Region is Honshu's tail, so to speak, and lies between the Sea of Japan and the islands of Shikoku and Kyushu. This area includes the following prefectures:
Chubu Region is a belt covering the center of the island which stretches from the Sea of Japan to the Pacific Ocean and includes the following prefectures:
Kanto Region is probably one of the most well known areas of Japan as it is host to Tokyo and Narita. It lies on the Pacific Ocean side of the island and encompasses the following prefectures:
Be careful not to mistake this prefecture for Kagawa-ken Prefecture.
Tokyo-to does not have a capital per se like the other prefectures. Tokyo prefecture is unusual in that within the prefecture there is one area consisting of 23 wards (to these ward names are attached the suffix of -ku). This area of 23 wards is often referred to as 'metropolitan Tokyo'. Surrounding 'metropolitan Tokyo' however are various cities and towns (the suffix of -shi is attached and follows the name of the city, the suffix of -cho is attached and follows the name of the town) which are also part of Tokyo-to prefecture. If someone else is able to explain this better we're open to suggestions.
Kinki Region is a belt that extends across the lower part of the island from the Sea of Japan to the Pacific Ocean and includes the following prefectures:
Tohoku Region lies on the top portion of the main island extending in a band from the Sea of Japan to the Pacific Ocean. This region hosts the following prefectures:
Let me see that detailed slow loading map. (Takes about 7 1/2 minutes to load.)
Take me to the suffix list.
Take me to the list of emperor reign years and their corresponding Western years.
Thanks to Debbie McMillan-Ito for creating this page!
Last updated July 10, 1998