About Kobe

Greetings from the Mayor

 After the Port of Kobe opened to the world in 1868, our city has welcomed and embraced a great variety of cultures and customs, which shaped its unique character. We have built a sound business infrastructure and the city is now home to many national projects, including a world-class supercomputer and Kobe Biomedical Innovation Cluster, which promotes cutting-edge research in various fields, such as the use of iPS cells in regenerative medicine.
 In addition to our numerous business incentives and support programs, Kobe prides itself as an international city and offers a splendid living environment to world-class specialists.
 Therefore, if you are thinking about expanding your business to Japan or Asia, please consider coming to Kobe! We would be delighted to welcome and support you in our city.

Mayor of Kobe Kizo Hisamoto

A Livable International City

 Kobe saw a large influx of foreign residents with the opening of the Port of Kobe in 1868. Since then, the lifestyles and cultures of each country have blended into the city itself, creating an environment where people from around the world can live happily.
 Kobe is a city blessed with both the ocean and mountains. It is a wonderful place to live, and also quite popular as a sightseeing destination. In addition, it also boasts a developed transportation network and booming markets that reach the entire Kansai region, making it an ideal location for business.

Kobe City Tourism Website

Comfortable Living Environment for Foreigners

 Kobe offers a superior living environment, compared to other large cities like Tokyo and Osaka. It provides the residents with every advantage of a big city, while still offering merits typically only found in suburban towns, such as larger housing options, lower living expenses, less traffic and crowding on trains, shorter commutes, and a greater sense of public safety.
 At the same time, Kobe is also surrounded in nature’s beauty thanks to the Seto Inland Sea to its south and the Rokko mountain range in the north. It is easy to enjoy seasonal activities like climbing or skiing in the Rokko Mountains, going for a stroll along the beach around Suma or Maiko, or swimming in the ocean. You can also experience traditional Japanese culture at the numerous local shrines, temples, and hot springs.
 You will also find standard big-city activities like shopping and food tours. Kobe’s chic cityscape is famous across Japan, making it a very popular city not only for Japanese people, but for foreigners too. The Sannomiya and Motomachi areas are home to boutiques for famous brands, and there are restaurants featuring global dishes scattered everywhere you look, including in Nankinmachi, Kobe’s own Chinatown. Kobe also offers up its own unique flavors, including Kobe beef and Kobe wine.
 It has been over 130 years since foreigners saw the unique characteristics of Kobe and began living there, adding to our history and transforming it into the international city it is today. Cultural exchange is still highly active even on an individual scale, providing an enriched and satisfying lifestyle for foreign residents both during work and when spending time off with family on weekends.

Sister and Friendship Cities

 Kobe has signed sister-city and friendship-city agreements with ten cities around the world, and we constantly engage in a variety of exchanges spanning across a wide range of fields.

Sister Cities Seattle (U.S.A.), Marseille (France), Barcelona (Spain), Rio de Janeiro (Brazil), Brisbane (Australia), Riga (Latvia), Incheon Metropolitan City (Korea)
Friendship City Tianjin (China)
Partnership Cities Daegu Metropolitan City (Korea), Philadelphia (U.S.A.)
Sister Ports Port of Seattle (U.S.A.), Port of Rotterdam (Netherlands), Port of Tianjin (China)

Many Different Foreign Communities and
Religious Institutions

 Ever since the Port of Kobe first opened, various foreign communities and religious institutions have come together in Kobe. The foreign communities are many and varied, including those established by people from Europe and the Americas, India, China and even social and sports groups. From old and historic to new, the communities offer a bit of everything.
 Kobe also offers many religious institutions that foreign residents can make use of in their daily lives, from Buddhism and Christianity to Judaism, Islam, and Jainism. Kobe is considered an international city precisely because it offers so many options for cultural exchange and worship.


Foreign Language Support in
200 Medical Institutions

 Approximately 200 medical institutions in Kobe offer services in various languages for all kinds of medical issues, including illness and injury.
 In addition to English, some institutions offer services in French, German and Chinese, helping to support the health of foreign nationals.


Eight International Schools for Comfortable Learning

 Kobe has a great reputation for children’s education. The city is home to 8 international schools, including the Canadian Academy, St. Michael’s International School, Deutsche Schule Kobe International, and Kobe Chinese School, in which around 2,500 international students are enrolled. These schools offer a comfortable and flexible learning environment.

Eight International Schools in Kobe
  • Deutsche Schule Kobe International (Higashinada Ward, Kobe)
  • Kobe Chinese School (Chuo Ward, Kobe)
  • St. Michael's International School (Chuo Ward, Kobe)
  • Canadian Academy (Higashinada Ward, Kobe)
  • Kobe Korean Elementary and Junior High School (Chuo Ward, Kobe)
  • Nishi-Kobe Korean Elementary School (Nagata Ward, Kobe)
  • Marist Brothers International School (Suma Ward, Kobe)
  • Kobe Korean Senior High School (Tarumi Ward, Kobe)

Other Educational Institutions

 In addition to the international schools, Kobe offers educational institutions for those aiming to be bilingual in English and Japanese, making it easy for children with different backgrounds to learn together.

Kansai International Academy Nada Ward
ROLY-POLY International Preschool Nada Ward
Mikage International Child Center Higashinada Ward
Kinder Kids Kobe Seaside International School Suma Ward
Blue Dolphins International Preschool Mikage Higashinada Ward
Maiko International Preschool Kobe Seaside Tarumi Ward


Kobe Port Logistics(Japanese)
Kobe PR Video by Andrés Iniesta
Rugby World Cup 2019 in Kobe(Japanese)

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