Japan, IN FACT, Has No Official Capital City
Truly, Tokyo city is often mistaken as the capital of Japan. However, this is only an unconfirmed capital, the country does not actually have an official one.
Why Tokyo isn’t the Capital City of Japan?
The reason is, in Japan, the residence of the Emperor is considered the capital city. Based on Tokyo Metropolitan Government (n.d.), throughout a long time before 1868, the Emperor’s residence was located in Kyoto, which was a formal capital city of Japan. After 1868, the Emperor, as well as the country’s government, resided in Edo, which is later known as Tokyo Metropolis. As a result, Tokyo became the capital city of the nation.
In 1950, the Japanese government made a decision to locate the capital in this city. However, a few years later, the leaders have taken back the decision. Therefore, Japan has no official capital city so far. Furthermore, “Capital of Japan’s Law and Custom” (Wikipedia 2021) states that “While no laws have designated Tokyo as the Japanese capital, many laws have defined a “capital area” (首都圏, shuto-ken) that incorporates Tokyo”.
The Land of the Rising Sun
According to World Atlas, Japan is a country in East Asia. The country has an area of more than 377,000 km2 and a population of more than 126 million people. Also, Japan consists of about 6,852 large and small islands, of which 4 main islands are Honshu, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku. Indeed, the nation’s territory is isolated on the sea, with no land border with any country.
People call Japan in many different names. There are some of the most well-known names are “The Land of the Rising Sun”, Fusang, “The Land of Cherry Blossom”, or “The Land of Tea Ceremony”, etc. In it, Fusang, or Fusō, is one of the popular names when referring to Japan. This nickname is called after the name of a tree species.
Following the name “The Land of the Rising Sun”, the Japan flag has a rectangle shape with two main colors, the white background with a large red circle, which symbolizes the Sun, in the center.
What is There in Japan to Discover
Definitely, it’s Mount Fuji coming first. It is the tallest mountain in Japan and is also a famous symbol of this country. Moreover, this mountain is often the subject of paintings and photography, art, literature, and music. Alongside, this is one of the “Three Holy Mountains” of Japan along with Mount Take and Mount Haku.
Besides that, there are destinations in Japan, particularly in Tokyo that travelers can visit:
The current monetary unit of Japan is the Yen. Actually, it is the third most traded currency on the foreign exchange market, after the US dollar and Euro. Thus, don’t forget to exchange some for your trip to the country.
- Tokyo Metropolitan Government, n.d., TOKYO’S HISTORY, GEOGRAPHY, AND POPULATION. [online] https://www.metro.tokyo.lg.jp/ENGLISH/ABOUT/HISTORY/history01.htm [Accessed 2 Apr. 2021].
- Wikipedia, updated Mar 2021, Capital of Japan. [online] https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Capital_of_Japan [Accessed 2 Apr. 2021].
- WorldAtlas, updated Feb 2021, Maps of Japan. [online] https://www.worldatlas.com/maps/japan [Accessed 2 Apr. 2021].
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This was so interesting and informative. I had no idea about the capital or how the name Land of the Rising Sun came to be.
We learn as long as we live. Great facts, thank you. My father used to work in Japan, and he was very impressed with the people and their culture. I hope I will go there some day too
This is fascinating. I didn’t know that Japan didn’t have a capital.
Now, that is something about Japan that I didn’t know. Anyway, it’s such a beautiful country. We were planning to go to Japan but then the pandemic broke.
I have always wished to visit Japan. Beause I love that country, it is so organised but I was not aware that it doesnt have capital city.
There are some interesting facts about Japan here. My son was going to go for a field trip years ago but a tsunami hit and the trip was cancelled. I was glad the school hadn’t already gone.
So interesting – I did not know that Japan has no official capital city. I have never been to this Eastern Asia country, it would be exciting to visit Japan someday.
This was such an interesting read. I’ve always wanted to visit Japan. I had no idea that the captial was wherever the emperor was.