| Guide to Yokohama City
Guide to Yokohama City
Every port has its own start, history, and roles. The Port of Yokohama is not the exception.
In the feudal Edo Period, Japan, which held the policy of “Sakoku” or national seclusion, had quite little contact with foreign countries and foreigners.
However, Tokugawa Shogunate agreed to the demand of open-country by Commodore Matthew Perry, who headed a fleet of U.S. warships (so-called “Black Ships”) and arrived at just south of Yokohama in 1853-1854, and Yokohama, which had been a small fishing village until then, opened its port in 1859 with new facilities and equipments to meet use as an international commercial port nearest to Edo (Tokyo), along with other 4 Japanese ports.
Then the Port of Yokohama started to work as a gateway to the world/ entrance to Japan to become the birthplace of Japan’s modern civilization; a wide range of first-time-ever things such as daily newspaper, railway, water supply, ice cream, beer, etc were introduced from Yokohama to other areas of Japan.
At the same time, it was the start of the tradition of “Hamakko (People of/ from Yokohama, like “Paulista”)”, who loved any new things, and was very cheerful at enjoying life by adopting whatever was good.
Even though the City and the Port of Yokohama were suffered from severe blows such as Great Kanto Earthquake (1923), the aerial attacks in the World War 2 (1945), Yokohama intensified its efforts every time to reconstruct the port, led by the enterprising spirit, to save its fashionable and sophisticated culture and streetscape.
The Keihin Industrial Region, or the belt to run to north and south, especially to the direction of Tokyo, from the Port of Yokohama, has enjoyed its development as the home-area of transportation equipment and home electronics manufacturers, heavy & chemical industries, and so on.
They adopted most the advantages of the Port of Yokohama to be established and developed and became literally the mainstay of Japanese post-war hyper-development of economics.
With this fact, it may be considered that the distinguished service of the Port of Yokohama to the economic presence of Japan to the world has been significant so far and importance of the roles in the current global economy will increase in the future.
Tourism is another prop of Yokohama, with full of fascination as a port-city, to have been successful in many big projects to combine establishment of a trade centre and tourist attractions, in tangible or abstract side of things, since the beginning of this century, for example.
Many appealing tourist attractions, including prior ones such as Minato-Mirai 21 District, Chinatown, and Yamashita Park, have attracted tourists in/ out of Japan, to achieve the record high of over 31 million people in 2013.
Yokohama will also work as the port of people, articles, culture, and any other value hereafter to continue to record its history of prosperity.
Facts of Yokohama
Population: 3.71 million (The second largest after Tokyo), estimated as of Feb. 1st, 2015
Mayor: Ms. HAYASHI Fumiko (2009- )
Average Temp of year: 16C or 60F
Average precipitation of year: 1,628.7 mm or 641.25 inches