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Kyoto travel guide — Kyoto tourism and travel information

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about Kyoto

Kyōto (Japanese: 京都市; -shi) is a city in Japan that has a population of 1.5 million and time zone UTC + 9 hours. Formerly the imperial capital of Japan, it is now the capital of Kyoto prefecture, as well as a major city of the Osaka-Kobe-Kyoto metropolitan area. An obsolete spelling for the city is Kioto.

Kyoto geography

Located on the middle-western portion of the island of Honshu the city is surrounded by mountains. Because Kyoto is surrounded by mountains on all sides, it is infamous for its stifling summer nights with no air movement.

The city was laid out in a grid pattern in accordance with traditional Chinese geomancy. Today, the main business district is located in the south and centre of town, with the less populated northern area retaining a far greener feel.

Kyoto is divided into the following wards: Fushimi-ku, Higashiyama-ku, Kamigyo-ku, Kita-ku, Minami-ku, Nakagyo-ku, Nishikyo-ku, Sakyo-ku, Shimogyo-ku, Ukyo-ku and Yamashina-ku.

Kyoto history

Though archaeological evidence places the first human settlement on the islands of Japan to approximately 10,000 BC, the Kyoto area was not settled until the 7th century by the Hata clan from Korea. During the 8th century, when the powerful Buddhist clergy became meddlesome in the affairs of the Imperial government, the Emperor chose to relocate the capital to a region far from the Buddhist influence.

The new city, Heiankyō ("Heian capital") became the seat of Japan's imperial court in 794. Later, the city was renamed to Kyoto ("capital city"). Kyoto remained Japan's capital until the transfer of the government to Edo in 1868 at the time of the Imperial Restoration. (Some believe that it is still the legal capital.) After Edo was renamed to Tokyo (meaning "Eastern Capital"), Kyoto was known for a short time as Saikyō (西京) (meaning "Western Capital").

Kyoto is the only large Japanese city that still has an abundance of prewar buildings, although modernization is continually breaking down the traditional Kyoto in favor of newer architecture, such as the controversial Kyoto Station complex.

The city was designated on September 1, 1956 by government ordinance. In 1997, Kyoto was the site of the Kyoto conference that resulted in the Kyoto Protocol on greenhouse gas emissions.

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This article is licensed under the GNU Free Documentation License. It uses material from the Wikipedia article "Kyoto".

This city is also known as: Kyoto.

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