Location of Namerikawa in Toyama Prefecture
|• Mayor||Masataka Ueda|
|• Total||54.61 km2 (21.09 sq mi)|
|• Density||620/km2 (1,600/sq mi)|
|Time zone||Japan Standard Time (UTC+9)|
|- Flower||Chrysanthemum morifolium|
|- Flowering tree||Rhododendron|
|- Fish||Firefly squid|
|Address||Jikei-machi 104, Namerikawa-shi, Toyama-ken
|Website||City of Namerikawa|
The city was founded on March 1, 1954. Once a rural town in the Hayatsuki Delta overlooking Toyama bay, then prospering as an inn town on the Old Hokuriku Roadway, in recent years Namerikawa has become home to large enterprise and continues to develop as an industrial city.
Namerikawa is situated in the northeast part of Toyama Prefecture. It is bounded by Toyama Bay to the north, Hayatsuki River to the east, the city of Toyama to the west, and the lower reaches of the Kamiichi River to the south and southwest. The two rivers, Hayatsuki and Kamiichi, separate Namerikawa from the city of Uozu and the town of Kamiichi respectively.
The coast of Namerikawa is the habitat of the world famous glowing firefly squid (ほたるいか hotaru-ika?), which surface yearly in a phenomenon that has been designated a special natural monument. To promote firefly-squid-themed eco-tourism and education, the world's only firefly squid museum opened in March 1998.
Another mainstay of Namerikawa pride is deep seawater (深層水), which is collected at a depth of up to 300 meters from Toyama Bay. The water's special properties and mineral content make it popular as a health product. Namerikawa has a deep seawater spa, which differs from other Japanese hot springs and bath houses in that it uses salt water piped in directly from the sea.
Namerikawa is located 1 hour by air (via Toyama Airport), 3 hours by rail and 5 hours by car from Tokyo. Namerikawa (and all of Toyama prefecture) lacks a Bullet Train line, so long distance travel usually involves first going to Kanazawa to the south-west or Niigata to the north by way of train or the Hokuriku Expressway. Namerikawa is served by two train lines, the Dentetsu (three stations) and the JR line. JR Namerikawa Station is located near the town's highest concentration of commercial establishments.
Namerikawa is well known in the region as the home of Plant 3, a large supercenter type store that might remind American visitors of a Walmart - certainly rare for Japan. Plant 3 is one of five Plant stores in the Toyama/Niigata region, so numbered in ascending order according to size. People have been known to travel from over an hour a way to visit Plant 3 and shop. The store is, to some, better known than the town itself.
Namerikawa has several sister cities:
- Komoro, Nagano (1974)
- Toyokoro, Hokkaidō (1984)
- Nasushiobara, Tochigi (1996)
- Schaumburg,_Illinois, USA (1997)
Media related to Namerikawa, Toyama at Wikimedia Commons