Maibara, Shiga

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Maibara
米原市
City
The shinkansen streaks past Mt. Ibuki before reaching Maibara Station.
The shinkansen streaks past Mt. Ibuki before reaching Maibara Station.
Location of Maibara in Shiga Prefecture
Location of Maibara in Shiga Prefecture
Maibara is located in Japan
Maibara
Maibara
Location in Japan
Coordinates: 35°19′N 136°17′E / 35.317°N 136.283°E / 35.317; 136.283Coordinates: 35°19′N 136°17′E / 35.317°N 136.283°E / 35.317; 136.283
Country Japan
Region Kansai
Prefecture Shiga Prefecture
Area
 • Total 250.46 km2 (96.70 sq mi)
Population (2010)
 • Total 40,349
 • Density 161/km2 (420/sq mi)
Time zone Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)
Address 3-3 Shimotara, Maibara-shi, Shiga-ken
521-8501
Phone number 0749-52-1551
Website City of Maibara
Maibara city hall

Maibara (米原市 Maibara-shi?) is a city located in Shiga Prefecture, Japan.

As of August 1, 2006, the city has an estimated population of 40,349 and a population density of 161 persons per km². The total area is 250.46 km².

History[edit]

The modern city of Maibara was established on February 14, 2005, from the merger of the towns of Maihara, Santō and Ibuki (all from in Sakata District). The adjacent town of Ōmi was later merged into Maibara on October 1, 2005. The new city name was based on the name of Japan Railways' Maibara Station which many people in Japan knew as a bullet train station on the Tōkaidō Shinkansen Line.

Geography[edit]

The city is in the northeast region of Shiga Prefecture. Its area occupies 5.1% of Shiga's total land area. The west end of the city fronts Lake Biwa, while the mountainous east side borders on Sekigahara, Gifu Prefecture.

Mt. Ibuki is in the north-eastern part of the prefecture and is Maibara's most prominent landmark and designated as one of Japan's 100 most famous peaks. The Anegawa River and Amanogawa River empty into Lake Biwa, and about 70 percent of the city comprises forest land. The city thus boasts an abundance of water and greenery.

Tourism[edit]

Maibara is mainly served by the JR Tōkaidō Line along which you can find Kashiwabara, Ōmi-Nagaoka, Samegai, and Maibara Stations. Maibara Station is also a shinkansen bullet train station. From Tokyo, Maibara can be reached in about two and a half hours via bullet train.

The city has a number of major sightseeing spots:

  • Mt. Ibuki - With an elevation of 1,377.4 meters, Mt. Ibuki is Shiga Prefecture's tallest mountain and a popular spot for skiing in winter and camping and hiking in the warmer months. A gondola and ski lifts carry you toward the top which affords fine views of Lake Biwa and the surrounding area. The nearest station is Omi-Nagaoka Station.
  • Samegai Trout Farm - Established over a century ago, this is the largest trout farm in Asia and with many trout ponds. There is also a shallow pond where children can try catch (and release) the trout. Riverside restaurants also serve fresh trout.
  • Nakasendō stage towns - The Nakasendō was an old highway linking Kyoto with Edo (present-day Tokyo). The highway had 67 stages and three of them were Kashiwabara, Samegai and Bamba in Maibara city. Even today, you can see remnants of these old stage towns established for highway travelers to lodge and trade.
  • Amanogawa River - In June, fireflies come out at night. Parts of the river are designated as a protected areas for fireflies.
  • Lake Biwa - The lakeshore road is very scenic on fine days.

Festivals & events[edit]

  • Samegai Baikamo Flowers - Underwater flowers which bloom in Jizogawa River
  • Maibara Hikiyama Festival - Parade of ornate floats which have a small stage featuring kabuki performed by children. Early October.

External links[edit]