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Survey ranks Japanese prefectures by how much people want to continue living there

23 Comments
By Shannon McNaught, SoraNews24

Japan has 47 prefectures that boast individual characteristics and lifestyles. Though the default is usually Tokyo, you may or may not be surprised to find that not everyone wants to live there.

Yahoo! Japan recently wrote about the results of a survey conducted in 2019 that asked citizens which of Japan’s 47 prefectures they would like to continue living in the most. About 340 people living in each prefecture were surveyed for a total of close to 16,000 participants.

The nuance of the survey title itself may be what makes all the difference, as it’s not about which prefecture people would like to move to, but rather which prefecture they would like to continue living in. Here are the top 10 results that may or may not shock you.

10. Miyazaki

9. Tokyo (shocking? Maybe not so much for Tokyo-ites.)

8. Aichi

7. Hyogo

6. Kyoto

5. Kanagawa

Kanagawa squeaked its way into the top 5 of the survey, and we’re not really surprised. Its bustling city of Yokohama has consistently ranked as the most desirable city for living in Japan’s Kanto region. The area boasts a bayside view, fashionable stores and eateries, and it’s within commuting distance to the heart of Tokyo with slightly lower living costs. And even though it has a bad rep in terms of crime sometimes, it’s also proving to be a great place for families to live and tourists to visit.

4. Okinawa

Why would you ever want to leave paradise? Many Japanese people (and Okinawans themselves) claim that Okinawa and Japan are almost entirely separate nations. At over 700 kilometers from the mainland of Japan, we can’t really blame them for thinking this way. Yet even Okinawans never get tired of the tropical weather, delicious food, and endless island-hopping opportunities. Maybe that’s why they live so long?

3. Osaka

Many Osakans have great pride in their region, so we’re not too surprised by this one. Osaka boasts a bustling culture and nightlife similar to Tokyo without the steep prices, and their public transportation is pretty extensive as well. Osaka is home to great food like takoyaki and okonomiyaki as well as one of the top 20 buildings in the world, Umeda Sky Building.

2. Fukuoka

Over 80% of respondents from Fukuoka said they’d like to continue living in the region. You may have heard of its up-and-coming downtown area of Fukuoka City, or you might know about how accessible it is to other regions of Asia (perfect for travel!). They have gorgeous nature spots and many delicacies, including some serious strawberries. The best part: it’s totally affordable for both singles and families to live in.

1. Hokkaido

Rounding off the top of the list is Hokkaido, also known as Japan’s largest and northernmost region. Though it can get pretty darn cold, they have affordable housing, a lot of beautiful nature, and it doesn’t hurt that they’re one of Japan’s main sources of agriculture and dairy (why wouldn’t you love a place that produces cheese?)

Though it’s separated from the main Honshu Island of Japan, there’s an underwater bullet train that can get you there in a jiffy. It seems like that’s not a concern for Hokkaido citizens, though, whose lifestyle is so different that they experience culture shock in their own capital.

And that’s the top 10, folks. Oh, and in case you’re wondering which prefecture was in last place, it was Akita — only 60% of participants said they’d like to continue living there (we’d highly recommend at least a visit, though).

Sources: Yahoo! Japan via Otaku.com

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- What part of Japan has the best food, and what should you eat there?

-- Fancy a change? Magazine survey picks Japan’s 10 best towns to live in

-- Japan travel bucket list: top places to visit in each prefecture before you die【Part I】

© SoraNews24

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

23 Comments
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which prefecture was in last place, it was Akita — only 60% of participants said they’d like to continue living there

my friend moved back to tokyo from Akita a year ago. She said it was terminally boring and with nothing to do. I wish I could have visited her. I would have loved to go there...I visited Iwate nearly 20 years ago and it was absolutely gorgeous.

Rounding off the top of the list is Hokkaido, also known as Japan’s largest and northernmost region. Though it can get pretty darn cold, they have affordable housing, a lot of beautiful nature, and it doesn’t hurt that they’re one of Japan’s main sources of agriculture and dairy (why wouldn’t you love a place that produces cheese?)

 Loved it with a passion. went there around 15 years ago for the snow festival. fell in love with the place. Hokkaido is my second favorite place in Japan after Mie.

4 ( +5 / -1 )

Recently returned to Tokyo after visiting the family in Hokkaido and every time that I do that visit it just makes me want to return for good...

Hopefully in the near future that will become reality. Because Tokyo is fun and all. But I'd rather live in Hokkaido for (imo) a better quality life.

7 ( +7 / -0 )

I’ll take Okinawa. Love the warm weather, people, food, ocean, a favorite place for me.

9 ( +9 / -0 )

which prefecture was in last place, it was Akita

Tohoku in general is pretty miserable. Bleak, awful weather and people with a reputation of being unwelcoming even by Japanese standards. My brother and his wife had a bad time with the locals up there when they toured Japan ( I tried to dissuade them fro going in the first place ).

Why the shock for Tokyo? The 23 wards are great fun and the west side Tokyo is lovely if you like it a bit more picturesque.

2 ( +5 / -3 )

Tohoku in general is pretty miserable. Bleak, awful weather and people with a reputation of being unwelcoming even by Japanese standards

You must be talking about the Japan sea side of Tohoku? The east coast has great weather, ok cold winters but much better than Hokkaido and without the horrible humid heat of Tokyo and further south. I have spent a decent amount of time in Tohoku and I found them very welcoming!

2 ( +3 / -1 )

What was the percentage of people in each prefecture that responded affirmatively, and what was the poll's margin of error? What percentage separates 1st from 10th place, 10th from 11th place, and 1st from last place? Were the respondents native born, or initially from other regions? What were those percentages? Article is pretty much useless without more data for context.

Invalid CSRF

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Hokkaido is great and so is the food as well as the people. That said, I think the same of Okinawa and since I am definitely a hot-weather person, it seals the deal for me. Also, it is cheaper than all of the other places on the list.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I'm only talking about the main island of Okinawa (particularly the southern half) but I thought it was an overdeveloped mess when I visited.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I can't wait to take a break from the Tokyo commute. It is a livable city if you make a lot of money and have an easy commute.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

I can definitely understand Osaka. Yes, it has similar city life like Tokyo without the high price tag. However, Osaka prefecture is spread out with many suburbs. Many of them are great to live in and quiet, too. Yes, the food is great and people do take pride in their culture and food. They are direct and out spoken, but very helpful, too; even sometimes, they will come up to you if you look lost, unlike Tokyoites who look surprised when approached.

10 ( +10 / -0 )

Well Tokyo is fun, yes, but I believe the people in Tokyo might have been slaves to Japan's overworking society...probably said Tokyo because it's close to work...bloody expensive and way too busy...plus nearly everyone I see on my way to work look plain miserable. I'll stick to Chiba

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I agree with the above comment. Once you live in Chiba, it’s hard to imagine living anywhere else.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

Where in Chiba is good?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

We have lived in Hyogo for nearly 20 years until the end of 2018 Kobe City but then Tatsuno City near a very beautiful beach and field's of farming. We love it here and the people are very friendly. Large house and garden. Wife lived in Chiba for about 20 years but wouldn't return.

6 ( +6 / -0 )

No plans to move from the sticks of Tochigi; the weather is reasonable, the air is clean, lots of green stuff, plenty of open space, very rarely affected by natural disasters of any kind.

If I were to move, I would consider Tokyo.

Certainly not the 23 wards, of course! Southern Tokyo, as far south as it's possible to get and still be in Japan.

Ogasawara. Generally not as many typhoons as Okinawa (though they seem to have been having some doozies in recent years), beautiful seas (one of Tochigi's major lacks) and very friendly people.

The biggest drawback would be the distance from family, with a 24-hour boat ride the first part of any journey to see the kids and grandkids. And no transport at all when the seas are rough.

Okinawa would be a very close second, except for the typhoons, distance and military.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

RecklessToday  06:16 pm JST

Where in Chiba is good?

Although it gets hit hard by typhoons sometimes, the Boso hanto is a really nice area.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Home is where the heart is, can be happy anywhere (or so I hear)

0 ( +0 / -0 )

No way in hell is Okinawa the cheapest place to live in! And it's an overpopulated mess! Not a whole lot of fun in summer unless you like living in an oven.

Hokkaido is an amazing place and ideal if you want to live in a place with milder summers and long winters, with many tourist options that are affordable.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

My first job was in Tokyo but I moved to Osaka in less than a year, no regrets. Yokohama is nicer than Tokyo as well with access to the same stuff. Tokyo is cool and all but it's expensive, crowded and the people there are often just cold and mean, plus it attracts all the foreign douchebags

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I absolutely love living in Tokyo. Yes it's busy and noisy etc etc but really it's just all about finding the neighbourhood that works for you. My neighbourhoods awesome, plenty going on but also very chilled out, the people are great.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Where in Chiba is good?

Disneyland! Lol!

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Where in Chiba is good?

The cities near the Tokyo border ( Funabashi, Matsudo, Ichikawa, Kashiwa, Chiba etc. ) are connected to Tokyo by mostly hellishly crowded trains if you are commuting in the rush hours ( the Tozai, Sobu and Joban Lines are particularly bad ). My old coworker works from home in a quiet suburb of Chiba City and very nice it is too. The east side of Chiba prefecture has a lot of open space.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

I can be having an Onsen in 20 minutes by car, in the countryside;

I can have an authentic Indian meal 5 mins from my home;I can be in Osaka in 25 minutes.

Life is good and I want to stay...

0 ( +0 / -0 )

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