Okayama Prefecture

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Okayama Prefecture
Japanese transcription(s)
 • Japanese岡山県
 • RōmajiOkayama-ken
Flag of Okayama Prefecture
Official logo of Okayama Prefecture
Anthem: Okayama-ken no uta
Location of Okayama Prefecture
Country Japan
RegionChūgoku (Sanyō)
SubdivisionsDistricts: 10, Municipalities: 27
 • GovernorRyūta Ibaragi
 • Total7,114.50 km2 (2,746.92 sq mi)
 • Rank17th
 (February 1, 2018)
 • Total1,906,464
 • Rank21st
 • Density270/km2 (690/sq mi)
ISO 3166 codeJP-33
BirdLesser cuckoo (Cuculus poliocephalus)
FlowerPeach blossom (Prunus persica var. vulgaris)
TreeRed pine (Pinus densiflora)

Okayama Prefecture (岡山県, Okayama-ken) is a prefecture of Japan located in the Chūgoku region of Honshu.[1] Okayama Prefecture has a population of 1,906,464 (1 February 2018) and has a geographic area of 7,114 km2 (2,746 sq mi). Okayama Prefecture borders Tottori Prefecture to the north, Hyōgo Prefecture to the east, and Hiroshima Prefecture to the west.

Okayama is the capital and largest city of Okayama Prefecture, with other major cities including Kurashiki, Tsuyama, and Sōja.[2][3][4] Okayama Prefecture's south is located on the Seto Inland Sea coast across from Kagawa Prefecture on the island of Shikoku, which are connected by the Great Seto Bridge, while the north is characterized by the Chūgoku Mountains.


Prior to the Meiji Restoration of 1868, the area of present-day Okayama Prefecture was divided between Bitchū, Bizen and Mimasaka Provinces. Okayama Prefecture was formed and named in 1871 as part of the large-scale administrative reforms of the early Meiji period (1868–1912), and the borders of the prefecture were set in 1876.[3][5]


Map of Okayama Prefecture
     Government Ordinance Designated City      City      Town      Village

Okayama Prefecture borders Hyōgo Prefecture, Tottori Prefecture, and Hiroshima Prefecture.[3] It faces Kagawa Prefecture in Shikoku across the Seto Inland Sea and includes 90 islands in the sea.

Okayama Prefecture is home to the historic town of Kurashiki. Most of the population is concentrated around Kurashiki and Okayama. The small villages in the northern mountain region are aging and declining in population - more than half of the prefecture's municipalities are officially designated as depopulated.[6]

As of 1 April 2014, 11% of the total land area of the prefecture was designated as Natural Parks, namely the Daisen-Oki and Setonaikai National Parks; the Hyōnosen-Ushiroyama-Nagisan Quasi-National Park; and seven Prefectural Natural Parks.[7]


Okayama City

Fifteen cities are located in Okayama Prefecture:

Name Area (km2) Population Map
Rōmaji Kanji
Flag of Akaiwa, Okayama.svg Akaiwa 赤磐市 209.43 44,498 Akaiwa in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Asakuchi Okayama.JPG Asakuchi 浅口市 66.46 35,022 Asakuchi in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Bizen Okayama.JPG Bizen 備前市 258.23 35,610 Bizen in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Ibara, Okayama.svg Ibara 井原市 243.36 41,460 Ibara in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Kasaoka, Okayama.svg Kasaoka 笠岡市 136.03 50,160 Kasaoka in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Kurashiki, Okayama.svg Kurashiki 倉敷市 355.63 483,576 Kurashiki in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Maniwa, Okayama.svg Maniwa 真庭市 828.43 44,265 Maniwa in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Mimasaka Okayama.JPG Mimasaka 美作市 429.19 28,502 Mimasaka in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Niimi Okayama.JPG Niimi 新見市 793.27 30,583 Niimi in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Okayama, Okayama.svg Okayama (capital) 岡山市 789.92 720,841 Okayama in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Setouchi Okayama.JPG Setouchi 瀬戸内市 125.51 37,934 Setouchi in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Sōja, Okayama.svg Sōja 総社市 212 67,059 Soja in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Takahashi Okayama.JPG Takahashi 高梁市 547.01 31,556 Takahashi in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Tamano Okayama.JPG Tamano 玉野市 103.61 60,101 Tamano in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Tsuyama, Okayama.svg Tsuyama 津山市 506.36 102,294 Tsuyama in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg

Towns and villages[edit]

These are the towns and villages in each district:

Name Area (km2) Population District Type Map
Rōmaji Kanji
Flag of Hayashima Okayama.svg Hayashima 早島町 7.62 12,671 Tsukubo District Town Hayashima in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Kaganino Okayama.JPG Kagamino 鏡野町 419.69 14,651 Tomata District Town Kagamino in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Kibichuo Okayama.JPG Kibichūō 吉備中央町 268.73 11,989 Kaga District Town Kibichuo in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Kumenan Okyama.JPG Kumenan 久米南町 78.65 4,962 Kume District Town Kumenan in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Misaki Okayama.JPG Misaki 美咲町 232.15 17,776 Kume District Town Misaki in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Nagi Okayama.JPG Nagi 奈義町 69.54 5,861 Katsuta District Town Nagi in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Nishiawakura Okayama.JPG Nishiawakura 西粟倉村 57.93 1,437 Aida District Village Nishiawakura in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Satosho Okayama.JPG Satoshō 里庄町 12.23 11,204 Asakuchi District Town Satosho in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Shinjo Okayama.JPG Shinjō 新庄村 67.1 951 Maniwa District Village Shinjo in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Shoo Okayama.png Shōō 勝央町 54.09 11,237 Katsuta District Town Shouou in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Wake Okayama.svg Wake 和気町 144.21 14,191 Wake District Town Wake in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg
Flag of Yakage Okayama.JPG Yakage 矢掛町 90.62 14,041 Oda District Town Yakage in Okayama Prefecture Ja.svg



Per Japanese census data,[8] and,[9] Okayama prefecture has had continual negative population growth since 2005

Historical population
1920 1,218,000—    
1930 1,284,000+5.4%
1940 1,329,000+3.5%
1950 1,661,000+25.0%
1960 1,670,000+0.5%
1970 1,707,000+2.2%
1980 1,871,000+9.6%
1990 1,926,000+2.9%
2000 1,950,828+1.3%
2010 1,945,276−0.3%
2020 1,920,739−1.3%



High schools[edit]

  • Okayama
    • Okayama Ichinomiya Senior High School
    • Okayama Asahi Senior High School
    • Okayama Sozan Senior High School
    • Okayama Hosen Senior High School
    • Okayama Joto Senior High School
    • Okayama Sakuyo High School[10]
    • Kurashiki High School






National highways[edit]



  • Bizen-yaki (Bizen pottery)
  • Bizen Osafune/Bitchu Aoe swords

Association with Momotarō legend[edit]

Okayama Prefecture is closely associated with the folklore hero, Momotarō. This tale is said to have roots in the legendary story of Kibitsuhiko-no-mikoto and Ura which explains that the Prince Ura of Kudara used to live in Kinojo (castle of the devil) and was a cause of trouble for the people living in the village. The emperor's government sent Kibitsuhiko-no-mikoto (Momotarō) to defeat Ura. The city of Okayama holds an annual Momotarō-matsuri, or Momotarō Festival.[4][11]


The sports teams listed below are based in Okayama.





Okayama Korakuen Park and Okayama Castle
Hiruzen Plateau and Hiruzen Joyful Park in Maniwa
Hinase Island and Seto Inlandsea in Bizen
Bitchu Matsuyama Castle in Takahashi

Some tourist attractions are:

Notable people[edit]


  1. ^ Nussbaum, Louis-Frédéric. (2005). "Okayama-ken" in Japan Encyclopedia, p. 745, p. 745, at Google Books; "Chūgoku" at p. 127, p. 127, at Google Books.
  2. ^ Nussbaum, "Okayama" at p. 745, p. 745, at Google Books.
  3. ^ a b c "Okayama Prefecture". Encyclopedia of Japan. Tokyo: Shogakukan. 2012. OCLC 56431036. Archived from the original on August 25, 2007. Retrieved 2012-08-01.
  4. ^ a b "岡山(県)" [Okayama Prefecture]. Nihon Daihyakka Zensho (Nipponika) (in Japanese). Tokyo: Shogakukan. 2012. OCLC 153301537. Archived from the original on August 25, 2007. Retrieved 2012-08-15.
  5. ^ Nussbaum, "Provinces and prefectures" at p. 780, p. 780, at Google Books.
  6. ^ Okayama official website Archived 2013-01-02 at the Wayback Machine accessed Nov. 2007
  7. ^ "General overview of area figures for Natural Parks by prefecture" (PDF). Ministry of the Environment. 1 April 2014. Archived (PDF) from the original on 21 April 2012. Retrieved 19 February 2015.
  8. ^ "Okayama (Japan): Prefecture, Major Cities & Towns - Population Statistics, Maps, Charts, Weather and Web Information". www.citypopulation.de.
  9. ^ "Japan Prefectures Population from 1920 and Area". www.demographia.com.
  10. ^ "岡山県作陽高等学校". www.sakuyo-h.ed.jp. Archived from the original on 11 January 2018. Retrieved 24 April 2018.
  11. ^ "Okayama History". Archived from the original on 22 May 2012. Retrieved 24 June 2012.
  12. ^ "Yuko Arimori's profile".
  13. ^ "Shin Koyamada's IMDB Biography". Archived from the original on 2013-03-27.


External links[edit]

Coordinates: 34°42′N 133°51′E / 34.700°N 133.850°E / 34.700; 133.850