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Kansai region facts for kids

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Map of Japan with Kansai region highlighted in dark green

The Kansai region (関西地方, Kansai-chihō) is one of Japan's traditional regions The area is also known as the Kinki region (近畿地方, Kinki-chihō) or as the Kinai (畿内). The Japanese conventions of geography and history divide the nation into eight regions, including the Kansai region. These have been used since 1905 as basic units for description and comparison. and as cultural markers.

The regions of Japan are a fusion of historical divisions and modern administrative needs". The significance of the region in Japan is geographical, cultural and administrative.


In the late 7th century, the Kinki region were identified as one of the eight largest administrative areas of the Imperial system (ritsuryo seido).

Gokishichidō is an ancient system of names for parts of the country, including Kinki or Kansai. Kansai covers the area around the capital city of Kyoto on the island of Honshū in roughly the same area as the traditional Kinki.

In the Meiji period, the modern regional system was made by Imperial decree. Japan was divided into regions (chihō ), including the Kinki region. A regional council (chihō gyōsei kyōgisai) was headed by the governor of the most powerful prefecture in the regional grouping. The council also included regional chiefs of central government ministries.

Table: Kansai region

Province Province capital Gokishichido.svg
Pre-modern regions
Prefecture Prefecture capital Regions and Prefectures of Japan 2.png
Regions today
Izumi Kinai Osaka Osaka Kansai created in 716 from Kawachi, then rejoined back in 740, later re-split in 757
Kawachi Kinai Osaka Osaka Kansai
Settsu Osaka Kinai Hyōgo; Osaka Kobe; Osaka Kansai
Yamashiro Kyoto Kinai Kyoto; Nara Kyoto; Nara Kansai
Yamato Wakigami Kinai Nara Nara Kansai northern Nara without Yoshino

Over time, Kansai has developed its own regional dialects, customs and unique traditional culture.

Related pages

Regions in the context of modern prefectures.
Kinai Tōkaidō Tōsandō Hokurikudō
San'indō San'yōdō Nankaidō Saikaidō

Places named with Kansai

Images for kids

See also

Kids robot.svg In Spanish: Región de Kansai para niños

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