Kagoshima City （鹿児島市） is the capital city of Kagoshima Prefecture （鹿児島県）. With an estimated population of 605,855, the city is also the largest in the prefecture by some margin. Between 2003 and 2005, the city's total area doubled as the results of five towns - Kouriyama, Matsumoto, Kiire, Sakurajima and Yoshida - merging into Kagoshima in 2004.
Kagoshima is renowned for its close proximity to one of the world's most active volcanoes, Sakurajima （桜島）, which lies four kilometres across the bay from the city and erupts almost daily, showering the city and its surroundings with volcanic ash. Ferries run frequently to and from Sakurajima.
Kagoshima is approximately 40 minutes from Kagoshima airport. The city itself is easily navigable by trams or buses. Additionally, the city has two train stations: Kagoshima Chuoeki (鹿児島中央駅） and Kagoshima Chuoekimae （鹿児島駅前）.
Areas of interestEdit
- Sakurajima 桜島: Kagoshima City's resident volcano. Can be seen throughout the city across the bay and is particularly stunning on clear days. Sakurajima is one of the most observed volcanoes in the world, due to its convenient location and the frequency of its eruptions. For six months every year, the volcano rains ash down over Kagoshima City and its surroundings, and for the other six months, the winds carry the ash over to the neighbouring Osumi Peninsula.
- Shiroyama 城山: a small mountain located within Kagoshima City. Its true height is 107m. The mountain is famous, as it was the site of the Battle of Shiroyama during the Satsuma Rebellion, in which a number of ex-Satsuma Samurai rebelled against the Meiji Government in 1877. It was during this battle that the famed Saigou Takamori lost his life. Now, the mountain provides a beautiful view over the city and bay, as well as provided some areas of historical interest.
- Tenmonkan 天文館: this area is where you can find most of the city's nightlife, as well as many restaurants and shopping arcades. Among other things, this area contains a large, mostly-designer boutique called Maruya Gardens and the eating-themed alley, Gourmet Street, in which all manner of restaurants and bars are located.
- Amu Plaza アムプラザ: alongside Tenmonkan, AMU Plaza is one of the main shopping and eating districts of the city. The mall itself is about seven floors high and contains a food court on the basement level, many clothes shops, home stores, music shops, a large book store and a gym called Seika. Next door to AMU is Chuoeki, the main station in the city. Additionally, in front of the mall is a bus hub.
- Kagoshima City Museum of Art: this museum is located near the site of Tsurumaru Castle at the foot of Shiroyama. The museum displays work from local artists, as well as work by western artists such as Renoir, Cezanne, Kandinsky and so on. Twice a year, the museum holds a special exhibition. The museum is open from 9:30-18:00 daily. Closed on Mondays. Admission is 200 yen.
- Kagoshima Museum of Modern Literature and Fairytales: This museum showcases fairytales by 28 writers. Themed around Kagoshima. Open 9:30-18:00. Closed on Tuesdays. Admission 300 yen.
- Detailed map (google maps), with many more locations in Kagoshima.