Maizuru City (舞鶴市)

Maizuru is a harbor city located in the northern part of Kyoto Prefecture (formerly Tango Province) overlooking the Sea of Japan.

For further details on Maizuru City prior to May 26, 1943, also refer to 'Nishi-Maizuru.'

For further details on the part of Maizuru City that used to be called Higashi-Maizuru City, also refer to 'Higashi-Maizuru.'

A major port town in Kita-kinki, Maizuru plays a central role in Kita-kinki's administration and economy. In addition to the military port in the east of Maizuru, the city has undergone development in the areas of heavy industries, shipbuilding and glass industries which form the urban areas of Maizuru.

The port can be divided into two main parts: Higashi (east) - Maizuru (Higashi-Maizuru City), which developed as a result of the military port, while Nishi (west) - Maizuru (Maizuru City from May 26, 1943), originated from an old trade port of a castle town. The part of the city which corresponds to Nishi-Maizuru of Maizuru City prior to May 26, 1943, is sometimes called old Maizuru City (hereafter, Nishi-Maizuru may be referred to as the (Old) Maizuru City for convenience).


Maizuru faces the Japan Sea while Maizuru bay splits the city to the east and west with its ria coasts. The entrance to the bay is protected by the Bakuchi Misaki and Kanagamisaki Cape from east and west, which form a safe natural harbor.

Mt. Aoba (Kyoto Prefecture and Fukui Prefecture) which lies between the border with Fukui Prefecture (Reinan), is the highest peak in the city. The area from Wakasa bay to the Oura peninsular located in the north-east end of the city is designated as Wakasa Bay Quasi-National Park.

Development within the city is split between the east and west. This is due to the Gorogadake Mountain, which runs up the center of the city, separating it into the east (Higashi-Maizuru) and west area (Nishi-Maizuru). Higashi-Maizuru was a former munitions city, but today flourishes in heavy industries centered around ship building and an old military port. Meanwhile, Nishi-Maizuru, a former castle town, comprises the commercial and industrial areas where the National and Kyoto Prefecture government administration offices as well as industrial complexes are centered. As such, the east and west of Maizuru possess different characteristics, between which there still remains an "east and west competition," which dates back to the times of Old Maizuru City and Higashi-Maizuru City.

Yura-gawa river, located in the west end of Nishi-Maizuru town area acts as a border between Miyazu-City, where it is famous for its beautiful scenery of Amanohashidate.

The city is surrounded by sea and forest, with buildings comprising as much as 1,143 ha, forests 6,410 ha, out of the limited total area of 10,320 ha. Kanmuri-jima Island is famous as the last paradise for Streaked shearwater.

Maizuru Line and Obama Line of West Japan Railway Company cross the city, while the west part of the city is served by the Kitakinki Tango Railway, Miyazu Line. Road access to the city is provided by the Maizuru Wakasa Express Way. Currently, re-development is underway in front of Higashi-Maizuru and Nishi-Maizuru stations.


The city falls under the Japan Sea Cost Climate with low temperatures in winter owing to the northwest seasonal wind, and sees much rain and snow (the city has a famous maxim stating "Do not forget to carry your umbrella with you when you go out even if you forget your lunch box"). However, temperature differences between summer and winter are relatively small, and its climate is much more comfortable when compared to the basin area. The average annual temperature is 14.3 degrees Celsius, with an annual precipitation of 1786.3 mm for Maizuru city, which is very close to the average calculated from 152 meteorological observatories in Japan.


From Prehistoric to the Battle of Sekigahara

It is said that humans first settled in Maizuru roughly 10,000 years ago. Rice was grown across a wide area during the Yayoi Period, including the Yuragawa-river basin. In ancient times, regional administrators were divided, and Maizuru belonged to Ninokuni Province. As the Yamato Dynasty expanded its territory, Ninokuni was divided during the Nara Period, causing Maizuru to be incorporated into Kasa-gun, Tango Province.

The manor of Daigo-ji Temple was placed in Maizuru, during the Nanbokucho Period,
Kasa-gun including present-day Maizuru, came under the control of the Isshiki family, following Mitsunori ISSHIKI's rise to Shugoshoku (regional governor) of Tango Province after the establishment of the Muromachi bakufu (Japanese feudal government headed by a shogun). Afterwards, Tangonokuni (Tango Province) continued on as a fiefdom of the Isshiki family. The Isshiki family fell after joining the Seigun (the western army) in the Onin War during the late Muromachi Period. Tangonokuni was then beset with turmoil as it faced constant attacks by the Hosokawa and Takeda clans, as well as Gekokujo (a coup).

In 1575, during the end of the Sengoku Period (Period of Warring States), Mitsuhide AKECHI and Yusai HOSOKAWA who were ordered to invade Tanba and Tango by Nobunaga ODA, killed former Shugoshoku Yoshimichi ISSHIKI, leading to the downfall of the Isshiki clan. Through Nobunaga's orders, Tango Province came under the territory of Fujitaka HOSOKAWA, with Maizuru becoming his base.
(Mitsuhide AKECHI was given Tanba Province and then he made Kameoka City his base.)
The Hosokawa family carried out development of Maizuru, and continued to govern the territory after the Honnoji Incident.

When the Battle of Sekigahara broke out in 1600, the Hosokawa family joined the Togun (Eastern army) led by Ieyasu TOKUGAWA.
Fujitaka HOSOKAWA then moved from Miyazu-jo Castle, which was rather small at the time, to the larger Tanabe-jo Castle (Tango Province, Maizuru-jo Castle) which contained a large moat and was considered easier to defend, but was eventually besieged. (the Battle of Tanabe-jo)
Facing a detached unit of the Seigun (Western army) however, he quit the castle under the royal orders of the Emperor Goyozei. (For further details, refer to Yusai HOSOKAWA)

Primogenitor of the Maizuru clan, Takamitsu KYOGOKU
After the Battle of Sekigahara, Takatomo KYOGOKU was transferred from the Iida clan, Shinano Province. He then governed the whole territory of Tango Province as the Tango clan, which naturally included Kasa-gun (Maizuru) as well. The Tango clan was then divided between the Takatomo KYOGOKU's sons, and Takamitsu KYOGOKU (descendant of Doyo KYOGOKU) who founded the Maizuru clan (Tanabe clan) (35,000 koku (nominal total annual rice crops of the clan; 1koku = 5.119 U.S. bushels). Takamitsu KYOGOKU rebuilt Maizuru-jo Castle (Tanabe-jo Castle) which was abandoned due to the "One Clan, One Castle" policy of the Tokugawa shogunate, and maintained the castle town, laying the foundation for the future development of Maizuru. Eventually, the Kyogoku family was transferred to the Toyooka clan, Tajima Province. After which, Tomishige MAKINO, a son-in-law of Takamitsu KYOGOKU inherited the Tango Tanabe clan. The clan then prospered as the Makino family, a clan worth 35,000 koku, until the end of the Edo Period.

From the Meiji Era to WWI

In 1869, Hansekihokan (the return of the land and people from the feudal lords to the Emperor) was carried out, a year after the Meiji Restoration. The Dajokan (great council of state) then ordered that the name of the Tango Tanabe clan be changed, in order to prevent duplicating the name of the Kii Tanabe clan, causing the Tanabe clan to change its name to the Maizuru clan after the pseudonym of Maizuru castle (Tanabe castle), in June of the year. In 1871, Nishi-Maizuru was then designated as the capital of Maizuru-ken (Prefecture) following Haihanchiken (abolition of feudal domains and establishment of prefectures). However, in October of the same year, it was incorporated into Toyooka ken, (Prefecture) and in 1876, was incorporated again into Kyoto Fu (Prefecture). However, in October of the same year, it was incorporated into Toyooka ken (Prefecture), and in 1876, was incorporated again into Kyoto Fu (Prefecture).

In 1873, a Karo (chief retainer) of Maizuru clan, Shinroku KAWAMURA founded Maizuru City Meirin Elementary School based on the Han school (clan school) of Maizuru, Meirinkan, which produced many scholars. Kasa-gun Maizuru-cho (Nishi-Maizuru) was then established in 1889, during the introduction of organization of municipalities. Following this, the Chinju-fu (a large and critical army or naval base) was installed in Higashi-Maizuru in October 1901, due to Maizuru's position as a military choke point, of which the first director was Heihachiro TOGO. The birthplace of Nikujaga (simmered meat and potatoes), TOGO is said to have created this recipe in Higashi-Maizuru. Along with the installment of Chinju-fu, a large-scaled housing land development was planned at Hamamura, Higashi-Maizuru. Like the city of Kyoto, the streets of the new town district were laid out at right angles (streets are named Ichijo to Kujo from the south to the north, and the names of warships were used from the east to west) and many Naval offices and subsidiary agencies were placed there (Cf. Destroyer "Yukikaze" of the Japanese Navy was built in Maizuru).

Although Maizuru saw successful development as a military capital, according to the Washington Naval Treaty in February 1923, Maizuru Chinju-fu was scaled down to a Critical Naval Department with the Naval Arsenal also being reduced to a Naval Factory Department. As a result, the population of the city temporarily decreased, slowing the economy. In September of the same year, the Naval Engineering College responsible for bringing up Navy Engineering Officers in Yokosuka City, was hit by The Great Kanto Earthquake. The facilities were then planned to be moved to Maizuru. In July 1936, as the Maizuru Critical Naval Department was upgraded to Chinju-fu status, the city prospered and the population reached its peak.

In 1943, together with the acceleration of war, Maizuru Chinju-fu enhanced its function as a Japanese Naval base, and many naval facilities were built not only in Higashi-Maizuru City (Higashi Maizuru region) but also in Old Maizuru City (Nishi Maizuru region). Further, the Maizuru Navy Arsenal's function as a weapon's arsenal was enhanced, producing many weapons/arms (mainly naval vessels) which included special purpose weapons such as the Koryu. As a result the Japanese Navy required both cities to become a single large naval port city. However, Old Maizuru city was hesitant, and proposed many conditions which included stipulating the location of city hall. Higashi-Maizuru City accepted these conditions and, given the situation prevailing at that time and the request to build a large naval port, both cities left the decision to the governor of Kyoto Prefecture. On May 27, which happened to be Maizuru City Navy Commemoration Day of the same year, both cities were united. The city hall was to be located in the Naka-Maizuru branch of Higashi Maizuru City, and the total population reached over 150 thousand people, making Maizuru City the largest, most important city on the Japan Sea Coast.

As the defense industry expanded due to the mounting war, Maizuru became a logistic support city, and the city saw an increase in its population as well. On July 29, 1945, US planes suddenly appeared over Maizuru City, and commenced an air raid which focused on the Navy Arsenal. The next day, US forces again air-raided Maizuru, this time on Maizuru port which subsequently suffered a large number of casualties.

On August 15, 1945, WWII ends

A detachment from the US occupation army was stationed at Maizuru City after the war, while the Government designated Maizuru as a port to receive forces being recalled from the mainland. Starting in 1945, over 660 thousand forces were repatriated as they landed on the motherland over the course of 13 years.
The story of "Ganpeki no haha" became famous at this time. (Mothers on the quay: Mothers standing and waiting desperately at the quay for their sons, namely the defeated servicemen as they came down from the vessels carrying refugees)
Today, the Maizuru Repatriation Memorial Museum stands at Taira (Maizuru City) in place of where the piers of repatriation used to exist.

Wartime movement to separate east and west

Soon after military facilities were established in both Maizuru Cities, it became necessary to control Maizuru as a single military city, as it was the only one on the Japan Sea coast. And in 1943, the Japanese Imperial Navy required both east and west Maizuru City to unite. Accepting this requirement, (Old) Maizuru City and Higashi Maizuru City, were joined on May 27, 1943. Thus was born the new Maizuru City. The population at the time was 154,953.

However, as was mentioned before, the people of (Old) Maizuru City (Nishi-Maizuru) were proud of their history as an old castle town/town of commerce and a center of Kasa-gun. People in the old Higashi-Maizuru City (Higashi Maizuru) where Maizuru Chinju-fu was founded and developed as a military city, were quite different, which brought a movement to life to separate the two cities. At the time, the wartime system regarding municipality consolidation, which was propelled by the military, was being revised. And in 1949, the Nishi-Maizuru region moved to propose a request for separation of east and west. In March 1950, a referendum was carried out in the Nishi-Maizuru region resulting in 7,046 votes for, 6,070 against, 4,483 abstention votes, resulting in its ratification. However, the Kyoto Prefecture assembly vetoed the motion, adopting the resolution that "(Maizuru should) be prosperous not only as a central city of northern Kyoto but also as a large port city in Kyoto Prefecture."

From the Incorporation of Kasa-cho town to the present

In 1957, Kasa-gun Kasa-cho which had long been related with Maizuru was incorporated in Maizuru City, forming today's Maizuru City.
For the first time, the total population exceeded 100,000. (Over time, the population has slightly decreased.)
Maizuru established itself as a regional hub city in Kita-kinki.

Even today, Maizuru houses the Maritime Self-Defense Force Maizuru District Headquarters (established in 1952) and 8th Regional Coast Guard Headquarters (established in 1948), taking on the characteristic of a defense base. Since Maizuru Port was designated as an Important Port in 1951 and also designated the first among the Japan Sea coast ports as FAZ (Foreign Access Zone), it has thus taken on the characteristic of a logistics/trade city functioning as an international trade port with periodical container carrier routes between the People's Republic of China, Republic of Korea and Russian Federation. And Maizuru also contains the Chutan wide area Promotion Bureau and Kinki Finance Bureau, and continues to expand as an administration city.

In April 2008, the launch ceremony for the Japanese Maritime Defense Forces' Ice Breaker Shirase, built at Universal Shipbuilding Corporation, took place.


1871: Nishi-Maizuru becomes the capital of Maizuru ken (Prefecture) after "Haihanchiken." November 1871: Maizuru is incorporated in Toyooka-ken (Prefecture).

1876: Toyooka-ken is divided and Maizuru is incorporated in Kyoto-fu (Prefecture).

1889: Maizuru town organization is established.

1901: Maizuru Chinju-fu is installed in Higashi Maizuru

1938: Nishi-Maizuru and Higashi-Maizuru establish the City organization as (Old) Maizuru City and Higashi-Maizuru City respectively.

1943: Through decree of the Navy, (Old) Maizuru City and Higashi Maizuru City consolidate to form today's Maizuru City. Population at the time is 86,051.

1945: Ukishima-maru Incident occurs.

1948: Maizuru Coast Guard Headquarters is established. Maizuru Port is designated as a Specified Port.

1950: A referendum is passed regarding separation of Maizuru City into east and west. Later, Kyoto Prefecture assembly veto the movement.

1951: Maizuru Port is designated as an Important Port.

1952: Japan Coast Guard School is founded. Coastal Safety Force (Maritime Self Defense Force) District Headquarters is established.

1953: Kyoto Prefecture Maizuru Bureau (Today's Kyoto Prefecture Chutan wide area Promotion Bureau) is established.

1957: Kasa-cho is incorporated into Maizuru City. Population at the time is 102,588.

1963: A new city hall building is constructed.

1965: The Maizuru National College of Technology is founded.

1976: Maizuru Stadium is constructed.

1990: Maejima Wharf is constructed in Maizuru Port.

1991: Maizuru-Wakasa Expressway was extended to Maizuru-nishi Interchange.

1993: Aka Renga Museum is opened.

1994: Maizuru Municipal Administrative Museum is constructed.

1995: Goro Sky Tower is constructed.

1998: Maizuru-Wakasa Expressway is extended to Maizuru-higashi Interchange.

1999: West Japan Railway Company Maizuru Line is electrified.

2003: JR Obama Line starts operation as an electrified railway.

2004: The Kansai Electric Power Co., Inc. Maizuru Power Plant starts operations. With the cooperation of the above company, Maizuru Sea Park opens and the PR boat inside the park, El mar Maizuru etc., starts operations.


Politics and administration

Main office of the city hall is located in Higashi-Maizuru.

Mayor Akira SAITO is elected during the February 11, 2007 mayor election.

City assembly consists of 30 seats.

Line of mayors

Structure of Mayoral Elections/City Council Factions
At the election of the city assembly held on November 17, 2002, 31 candidates ran for 30 available seats. The election was severely contested among the selected few. As on the national political scene, both the Liberal Democratic Party and Democratic Party (1998 -) adopted or recommended candidates, resulting in both sides acquiring seats. Today, adding to the ruling party-sided conservative 2 factions, the Democratic Party line Shoyukai also appraises the mayor's municipal government administrations. Independent assembly members formed a new faction, the People's Forum Maizuru, in December 2005. In the current city assembly, it is said that all parties except the Japanese Communist Party constitute the all-ruling-party system.

At the election of the city assembly held on November 19, 2006, 32 candidates ran for 30 available seats. As had happened previously, the election was strongly contested, with mayor-supporting ruling-party candidates, such as those of a conservative bent generally garnering the votes. After the election, the number of special committees was reduced from four to three.

At the mayoral election held on February 11, 2007, after the incumbent mayor Mitsuoki EMORI had announced his retirement, the previous deputy mayor, who had raised problems such as those involving the Maizuru Municipal Hospital (the pros and cons of private consignment of its management), and advocated the continuation of the EMORI administrations, was recommended by Mps such as Sadakazu TANIGAKI/Bunmei IBUKI, some Kyoto Prefecture assembly members and the LDP. At the same time the former city assembly member and previous prefecture assembly member, SAITO, ran the race for mayor as an independent candidate backed by the former hospital director for Maizuru Municipal Hospital and relatives of the (now defunct) former Maizuru mayor, resulting in a split among the conservatives. In addition, a DP candidate backed by MP Tetsuro FUKUYAMA and JCP candidate also joined, resulting in a total of four candidates in the race. Despite the extreme competition SAITO persevered and won the election. Much focus is being placed on the future municipal administration.


The general account for Maizuru in FY 2007 was \32,234,030,000 which weighed on assistance provided to the Maizuru Municipal Hospital, which faced a shortage of doctors and cutbacks in various functions, together with focus placed on trade promotion project expenditure towards the Maizuru Port. Overall, a 0.4% decrease from the previous year was seen. Within the budget, independent revenue sources such as the municipal inhabitant's tax increased to 54.1%, due to significant increases in fixed property taxes resulting from the start of operations of Kansai Electric Power thermal power plants in 2004. The special account totaled \35,341,000,000. The welfare budget totaled 30.9% while the Civil Engineering budget was 15.2% of the total.

Among the individual projects, \0.2 billion was budgeted for the Maizuru Port trade promotion project including the promotion for the construction of Wada Warf. The city budgeted \24,000,000 for the management of Maizuru Chiegura, (Maizuru Wisdom Warehouse) expected to open in April 2007. \277,500,000 was allocated to aid enterprise invitation activities including those for the West Japan plant of Kenko Mayonnaise Co., Ltd constructed in Kuratani Industrial Park, while \3,046,060,000 was allocated for the municipal hospital operations account, as well as \462,430,000 for the new landfill project.

The balance for city bonds issued was \71.8 billion, a decrease of \0.2 billion from the previous year. Funds/deposits are expected to be \12.2 billion. Although Maizuru City's finances are favorable compared among the rest of the northern Kyoto autonomous bodies, the city has concerns including depopulation, Maizuru Municipal Hospital management, etc. Maizuru City is poised to tackle these issues through administrative reform in its policies.

National Branch Office

Maizuru City has many national branch offices as the city is the northern center of economy and administration for Kyoto Prefecture, while also possessing the port of Maizuru. Kyoto District Court Maizuru Branch is the only branch among the four northern branches that has functions to handle cases in banc at the district court, as well as criminal cases of the family court involving juveniles. Additionally, the detention center, which is under control of the Ministry of Justice, is the only one in the northern area attached to the Maizuru Detention Branch.


Since Maizuru City was for a long time a munitions city that had a Chinju-fu with a military capital both before and during the war, it has been an oceanfront-type heavy industrial city since the end of war. As a result, Maizuru has the largest economy in the Kita-kinki region. However, now economy has been sluggish because Maizuru suffers from a change in industrial structures and chronic shortages in usable land. Recently, although the Maritime Self-Defense Force Maizuru District Headquarters has increased personnel, the numbers of local branches of firms located in Maizuru has been decreasing due to mergers, resulting in a decrease of the population. Today's figures are 3% less compared to 97,780 in 1975.

Market area / urban area

The Maizuru urban area includes the whole of Maizuru City, the entire Takahama-cho town, Oi-gun Fukui Prefecture and part of Oi-cho town/Ayabe City/Miyazu City. The total population of the market area is estimated to be about 120,000. Until the development of La Port (explained later) in 1995, there were no mass merchandising stores other than one store in Nishi-Maizuru (Sato Maizuru), and a shopping district near the train station (Higashi-Maizuru: Sanjo/Yashima/Omon malls and Nishi-Maizuru: Manai mall) which was able to operate without severe competition.

In recent years, Al (Kyoto Prefecture, head office is in Maizuru City. Opened in 1995) of the Heiwa-do group moved in front of the Higashi-Maizuru station. Also, suburban type restaurants, entertainment facilities and large-scaled suburban stores moved in, alongside the Shiratori Kaido Road (Kyoto Prefecture Road No. 28, Ogura Nishi Maizuru Line) connecting the east and the west town areas of Maizuru, and alongside the National Road No. 27 in Nishi-Maizuru, with the market area extending to the neighboring municipalities as the new Kita-kinki market area. Accordingly, the aforementioned shopping districts near the train stations steadily declined, with many vacant stores appearing. 24-hour-operated convenience stores such as Lawson also moved in.

As for the Shiratori Kaido Road, a by-pass and 4-lane project was proposed. However, the road has already become a town area, which brought a stop to the above projects. As a result, a new road plan was proposed to widen the old Shiratori Kaido Road, making room for a new by-pass.

Scope of the future

Although Maizuru City used to be the largest industrial city among the Japan Sea coastal cities, and temporarily held a population of about 200,000 during WWII, today its rank in this respect is lower. However, Maizuru City is still an important position as an economic center of northern Kyoto, and the closest port of Japan Sea to the Kinai area (territories in the vicinity of the capital and under direct imperial rule, the five kuni in the immediate vicinity of Kyoto). Thus the Prefecture and the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transport and Tourism is prepared to maintain the port as a critical point and has widened the function of the new port Wada Warf (tentative name) to harbor larger vessels and handle containers.

The population of the central town area of Maizuru City decreased from about 8,400 in FY1985 to about 6,300 in FY2000, with total net sales of merchandise also decreasing by 35% from about \1.7 billion to about \1.1 billion. The municipal and prefecture government are trying to recover and stimulate the city. These days, high-rise condominiums are being built around the Higashi-Maizuru station.


There were 326 manufacturer related business institutions in Maizuru City as of 2002, 531 construction business institutions, and 2,390 wholesale/retail sale/catering trade institutions. Industries in Maizuru City originally included oceanfront-type heavy industries such as shipbuilding, glass manufacturing and logging, with a boom in shipbuilding being seen in recent years. The total economic scale of the entire manufacturing sector is \270 billion, the most in the Kita-kinki region. However, excluding large scale firms, this is scaled down to \65 billion, meaning that there are few SME and micro enterprises. Among manufacturing industry, the largest is the ceramic industry (glass), worth about \80 billion followed by drinking cans, transportation units (shipbuilding) and the logging industry.

Primary industry workers total about 3,400, roughly 7.3% of the total. Secondary industry employees total about 14,300 which comprise 29.9%, with tertiary industry employees amounting to an estimated 30,000 or 62.8%. This implies that Maizuru City can be said to be a tertiary industrial city where service industries are active, making it a city of commerce when compared to neighboring municipalities.

As an example of recent large scale business advances, a top soft drink manufacturer and leading cosmetics manufacturer moved in to Kuraya Industrial Park (Kyoto) in the Kuraya district which was developed by the municipal government in 1990. This is in addition to Nihon Kotsu Co., Ltd (Osaka) which was invited to the Kita Industrial Park in December 2004. Further, in 2006 it was decided that Kenko Mayonnaise Co., Ltd would move to the site within Kuraya Industrial Park formerly occupied by Shiseido co., Ltd.


Both Yura-gawa and Yohoro-gawa river flow through Maizuru City, with 1,620 ha of accompanying land area used for agriculture which comprises 4.7% of the total area. Of this, rice fields comprise 77.8% of the area where Koshihikari Rice is mainly produced. Other fields used for farming total 368 ha, and are used for general farming.
The agricultural population declined to 11.9% in 2000. (2,831households)
By comparison, this figure was a little over 15% in 1990. The agricultural workers face an advancing aging crisis which mirrors the rest of the country.

Fishing Industry

As of 2000, 387 households were engaged in the fishing industry, Among these, 332 were individual fishery management institutions and 55 were employed by fishery institutions. Workers in the fishing industry within Maizuru City also face an aging crisis, with the ratio of fisherman under 65 years of age having declined to 59.3%.
Mainly sardines and Japanese horse mackerels are caught landing at Maizuru Port, and recent years, they try to sell local iwagaki (oyster) caught in near Maizuru water with the brand name 'Maizuru Kaki Oyster.'


Forest land rate for all of Maizuru City is 79.0%, 27,015 ha, and the artificial forest rate is 34%, 8,597 ha. The National forest is 754 ha, 2.8% against 26,261 ha of private forests. Households engaged in forestry is 1,239, a 3.6% share compared to the total number of city households. Protected forests total 4,322 ha, only 16.0% of the total.

Friendship town/Associated town

Three friendship towns as of 2005. Maizuru City has no domestic friendship town(s).


Nakhodka, Russian Federation

Sister-city affiliation established on June 21, 1961: first sister-city affiliation between Japan and Russia (then part of the Soviet Union)

Dalian City, PRC

Friendship-city affiliation established on May 8, 1982.

Portsmouth, England

Sister-city affiliation established on May 15, 1998.

The Region
In Maizuru City, the Maizuru-ben dialect (Chatta-ben dialect) is represented by the postfix, 'chatta' which is unique to the dialect and quite different from the Kyoto-ben dialect or even the Fukui-ben dialect. ~Shichatta,' a usage example of the aforementioned 'chatta' is '~sareta' (respectful form of 'shita' or did of the 2nd or 3rd person)' in the standard Japanese language. Further, '~Shitotten' in Maizuru-ben dialect is the same as the interrogative '~Shiteiruno?' (Are you doing ~) in standard Japanese language while the same '~Shitotten' in Osaka-ben dialect is a past form, '~shite-ita' (I was doing ~) of standard Japanese and completely different from the Maizuru-ben dialect in its meaning and intonation. The language and its pronunciation of Maizuru is very close to standard Japanese language and basically different from the Kanto-ben and Kansai-ben dialect, too, perhaps due to the fact that Maizuru was a naval base port city located in the center of the Japan Sea coast.

In Kyoto or Osaka, many people put the postfix 'ke?' instead of standard 'ka?' in interrogative sentence, however, in Maizuru, this 'ka' or 'ke' turns to 'ko?'
It is said that the people of Kyoto also feel that the usage of this "~ko" is strange.

People in Maizuru use double consonants, (namely 'tsu' when writing).
Motte itteta no desuka?' (Did you bring (it) out?) turns to 'Mottettottan ko?'

Based on the common characteristic of the Maizuru-ben dialect, the local hero 'Maizuru Boei-sentai Chatta-man' (the Maizuru Guardian Chatta-man) was created, is popular in many local events.

Birth ratio/population aging rate

The percentage of the population of Maizuru City aged 65 or older is relatively high compared with that of Kyoto Prefecture as a whole (19%) because of the large number of young people from Maizuru City that leave the region. The prefecture and municipal governments are taking counter measures against the increasing population aging rate in the east and west towns. Although the birth ratio is over 1.8 and higher than the national average, dynamic trends in the population caused a natural reduction to occur for the first time in 2004.

Population aging rate of Maizuru City: 21% (when limited to the towns, this goes up to 28%)

Average life expectancy: male 77.1-years, female 84.4-years old.

Birth ratio of Maizuru City: 1.82 (Entire Kyoto Prefecture is 1.28)

Health and welfare


In Maizuru City, there are 4 large general hospitals such as National Hospital Organization Maizuru Medical Center, Maizuru Municipal Hospital, Maizuru Red Cross Hospital and Maizuru Kyosai Hospital. Other than these, there are 9 large scale hospitals. Also, when including small and medium sized hospitals, there are an estimated 75 hospitals scattered across the city. 211 Doctors are based in the city. There are many out-patients who come from Miyazu City, Yosa-gun and Oi-gun, Fukui Prefecture.

Further, Maizuru is positioned as a healthcare service base in northern Kyoto. The Kyoto Prefectural Maizuru Rehabilitation Center for Crippled Children, Kyoto Prefectural Blind School and Kyoto Prefectural School for Deaf-mutes are located here as well.

Child Raising

Baby home - Public 5, Private 9, nonpermitted 6

Regional Child Raise Support Center - single function type 1, paralleled with baby home 2

After-school day care (so-called After School Care Program) - provided at 10 facilities

Children's nursing home - 2

Elderly Welfare

Elderly Welfare - Nursing home 1, Center for social welfare for the aged 2

Welfare for the handicapped - Welfare facility for the physically-handicapped 1, Support center for hearing and language disabilities 1

Education and research institutions

Apart from elementary schools, junior high schools and high schools, there is also the National College of Technology, research institutions of various universities and the Japan Coast Guard School, an institution of the Japan Coast Guard. Additionally, the Prefectural School for Disabled Children (today's Special Support School) was constructed in 2005.

Since 2003, the municipality has proceeded to strengthen its cooperation with the Kyoto Seika University in many fields, such as regional development, utilizing the Maizuru Natural and Cultural Gardens, etc. Both the municipality and the university agreed to found the Maizuru Satellite Office on March 3, 2005. Prior to its foundation, a 'preparatory office' was established.


From Kyoto station

Limited express 'Maizuru' or 'Tango Discovery' (Approx. 1:30 to Higashi-Maizuru station)

Limited express 'Hashidate,' 'Tanba' or 'Kinosaki,' which then changes to the local Maizuru Line at Ayabe station (Approximately 1:40 to Higashi-Maizuru station)

From JR Osaka station

Limited express 'Kitakinki,' 'Tango Explorer' or 'Monju,' which then changes to the local line in the Maizuru direction at Fukuchiyama station (Approximately 2:10 to Higashi-Maizuru station).


Maizuru Wakasa Express Way - (from Kobe to Maizuru-higashi Interchange: Approximately 1hour)

Direct bus routes to Maizuru: from Kyoto, Osaka, Kobe, Tokyo Shinagawa Bus Terminals (reservations are required except on the Kyoto route).


Maizuru Line was constructed by the Government where railway lines were generally constructed privately at the time, due to the needs to hasten completion because of the coming Russo-Japanese War. All lines were opened on November 3, 1904. Later, Maizuru-ko and Naka-maizuru Lines were constructed as feeder lines, but are both discontinued today. Maizuru Line was succeeded by the West Japan Railway Company on April 1, 1987 and in 1991, the Maizuru Railway Department in charge of the Maizuru Line was newly organized as part of JR West. On July 13, 1996, Higashi-Maizuru stationwas constructed on a bridge across the line. On September 25, 1999, Nishi-Maizuru station was constructed on the bridge across the line.

Main station: Higashi Maizuru station of JR West Maizuru Line and Obama Line.

Other stations located within Maizuru City: Nishi-Maizuru station, Magura station, Matsunoodera Station, Shisho station, Shinonome station (Kyoto Prefecture) Tango-Kanzaki station.

Railway Routes

Maizuru Line

Obama Line

Kita-kinki Tango Railways, Kita-kinki Tango Railways Miyazu Line.


Kyoto Kotsu
Express Buses to Kobe, Kyoto, Osaka and Umeda are available.

Sea Routes

Shin Nihonkai Ferry: Maizuru Port to Otaru Port.

Maizuru steam ship: Ceased operation in the end of September 2004.

Maizuru Port Pleasure Boat


On March 26, 1991, the Maizuru Express Way (today's Maizuru-Wakasa Express Way) between Fukuchiyama Interchange and Maizuru-nishi Interchange opened to became the first Automobile Express Way in Maizuru City. Additionally, on March 8, 1998, the Maizuru Oe Interchange of the Kyoto Longitudinal Expressway was completed. On the 18th, the long awaited Maizuru-nishi Interchange and Maizuru-higashi Interchange opened, heralding the completion of the first express way network.

On November 8, 2006, 'Sugasaka By-pass' of Kyoto Prefectural Road No. 51, Maizuru Wachi Line (total extension 2.3 km), connecting Maizuru City Higashi area and Ayabe City Kanbayashi area opened.


Maizuru has many historic sites, owing to its development as Kokufu (provincial capital) of Tango Province from the Muromachi to Azuchi-Momoyama Period. Also, due to the location of Maizuru Chinju-fu, many old navy related facilities are still located in the area.

The path with views of 'old warehouses and Maizuru bay' forms one of the selection of a hundred promenades.

On Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays, Maizuru Sightseeing Excursion Buses operate across a variety of sight seeing points (An operation support fee of \100 is charged).

Famous and historical places

Maizuru Red-brick Warehouses - consists of 12 old red-brick buildings

Red-brick museum

Maizuru Municipal Administrative Museum

Maizuru Chiegura (Maizuru Wisdom Warehouse)

Navy Memorial Museum

Kitasui water purification plant ? this distribution reservoir and facility shed has been designated as a nationally important cultural asset, and labeled the 'Former Maizuru Chinju-fu water supply facility.'

Old Kanzaki Brickyard Hoffmann-style ring kiln

Maizuru Repatriated Museum

Matsunoo-dera Temple; No. 29 pilgrim stamp office of the 33 Temples of Saigoku.

Kongo-in Temple (Maizuru City)

Enryu-ji Temple (Maizuru City)

Asashiro-jinja Shrine - former prefecture shrine

Hongyo-ji Temple (Maizuru City) - bodaiji (family temple) of a provincial head of Tango, Takatomo KYOGOKU,.

Keirin-ji Temple

Tane-ji Temple - there is a Statue of Kongo-rikishi (designated as an important cultural asset) created during the Kamakura Period.

Goro Sky Tower - from the top of the tower tourists are able to view the entire Maizuru bay area; this was selected as view number one of 100 famous views of Kinki.

Meirinkan Main Gate - main gate of the clan school founded by domain head Fusashige MAKINO during the Edo Period.

Tanabe-jo Castle (Tango Province), (Also known as Maizuru-jo Castle)

Maizuru City Local Museum

Yoshida-no-shidarezakura (weeping cherry of Yoshida) - located in the ruins of the location of the exiled Lord Michikatsu NAKANOIN, Ruri-ji Temple (Maizuru City).

Anju-hime-zuka (Tumulus of Princess Anju)

Yukinaga family house

Maizuru Crane Bridge

Maizuru Port Pleasure Boat - the boat circles in Higashi Maizuru Bay from Higashi-maizuru Sanjo Coast.

Path to view Maizuru Red-brick Warehouses and Maizuru Bay, selected as the selection of a hundred promenades

Interactive facilities, etc.

Maizuru Seaside Park

Maizuru Natural and Cultural Gardens

Aobasanroku Park (Camping site/putting golf/pottery house)

Toshima Island (Kyoto Prefecture Youth Island), commonly called Ponpoko-jima Island

Nohara Fishery Facility 'Shionome'

Maizuru Fururu farm

Marine activities

Ryuguhama swimming beach

Nohara swimming beach

Kanzaki swimming beach


Zuwai-gani crab

Boiled fish-paste products ("kamaboko," fish minced and steamed, "chikuwa," fish sausage etc.)

"Maizuru Kamaboko" (fish minced and steamed) - one of the firstly authorized local brands.

Tango Tori-gai cockle

Maizuru Kaki Oyster

Iwa-gaki oyster

Maizuru Kaki (oyster)-don Rice Bowl dishes, Maizuru Iwa-gaki (oyster)-don Rice Bowl dishes,

Manganji Amato, (Manganji-temple green pepper, the same as Manganji Togarashi)

Oura-mikan mandarin orange


Maizuru Tsutsuji (azalea) Matsuri Festival (May)

Hotokemai, Buddha Dance (May)

Maizuru Tanabe-jo Matsuri Festival (May)

Minato Maizuru Chatta Matsuri Festival (July)

Aka-renga Summer JAZZ in Maizuru (August)

Machi-asobi Festival (August)

Joya no Age-taimatsu Festival (August 14)

Obase no Shorai-bune (Ship of souls) (August 15)

Yoshiwara no Mandoro Fire Festival (August 16)

Maizuru Sakana Matsuri Festival (October)

Aka-renga Festa (Maizuru) (October)


Zip codes are as follows (revised on September 19, 2006)

Higashi-maizuru Post Office: 625-00xx, 625-85xx, 625-86xx, 625-87xx, 625-01xx
Nishi-maizuru Post Office: 624-08xx, 624-09xx, 624-85xx, 624-86xx, 624-87xx, 624-01xx
Long distance code - entire city 0773
Total households: 34,000 (April 1, 2008)
Registered foreigners: 1,361 (2004)

[Original Japanese]