Kochi Prefecture’s location on the Pacific Ocean has made it a gathering place for surfers from all over Japan. Its unique geography has earned part of the coast UNESCO status, and led to the establishment of a geopark. The Shimanto River, regarded as one of the last naturally flowing rivers in Japan, draws campers and trekkers who are eager to spend time on its banks. Historical townscapes such as Kochi Castle and old sake breweries, traditional markets and railways in the region are nicely preserved and worth exploring.
Part of the island of Shikoku, Kochi is most easily accessed by plane, although bus and train connections are available as well.
From Tokyo, you can fly direct from Haneda Airport to Kochi Ryoma Airport; there are also direct flights to Kochi from Osaka's Itami Airport, Fukuoka Airport and Nagoya Airport. If you’d rather travel on land, catch the JR Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen from JR Shin-Osaka Station or JR Tokyo Station to JR Okayama Station. From Okayama Station you can make a bus connection to Kochi Station. There are also local train lines serving Kochi, such as the Tosa Kuroshio Railway.
The people of Kochi are known for their love of dorome (fried sardines) and alcohol. Every year there is a dorome fes...
The bonito, or katsuo in Japanese, is a relative of the tuna fish. Katsuo has a deep red coloring and rich flavor. It...
Imokenpi are strips of sweet potato fried until crispy and coated in sugar and a touch of salt to balance the flavor....
Tosa Forged Blades
Tosa uchihamono are free-forged blades. Sharp, durable and easy to care for, these cutting tools reflect swordsmithin...
During spring, Kochi comes alive with colorful blossoms, the peak of which is the Kochi Flower Festival in Chuo Park, home to an impressive array of over 40,000 flowers.
The Yosakoi Festival is the highlight of Kochi’s warmer season, featuring 20,000 dancers and plenty of music and moves.
The Kochi Castle Autumn Festival is highlighted by a Shinto dance performance called Kagura dedicated to the gods. Time also for displays of archery from horseback.
Kochi’s temperate winter season provides a welcome respite from Japan’s frigid winter, and people get outside for sports for both warm and cold seasons. The Kochi Castle Winter Festival runs in late December.