|Area||227,960 km2 (88,020 sq mi)|
|Length||1,300 km (810 mi)|
|Width||50–230 km (31–143 mi)|
|Coastline||10,084 km (6265.9 mi)|
|Highest elevation||3,776 m (12388 ft)|
|Highest point||Mount Fuji|
|Largest settlement||Tokyo (pop. 13,617,445)|
|Population||104,000,000 (2017 estimate)|
|Pop. density||447/km2 (1158/sq mi)|
Honshu (本州, Honshū, pronounced [hoꜜɰ̃ɕɯː] ( listen ); lit. "main province"), historically called Hondo (本土, mainland), is the largest and most populous main island of Japan. It is located south of Hokkaidō across the Tsugaru Strait, north of Shikoku across the Inland Sea, and northeast of Kyūshū across the Kanmon Straits. The island separates the Sea of Japan, which lies to its north and west, from the North Pacific Ocean to the south and east. It is the 7th largest island in the world, and the 2nd most populous after the Indonesian island of Java.
Honshu had a population of 104 million as of 2017 [update] , mostly concentrated in the coastal areas and plains. Approximately 30% of the total population resides in the Greater Tokyo Area on the Kantō Plain. As the historical center of Japanese cultural and political power, the island includes several past Japanese capitals, including Kyōto, Nara and Kamakura. Much of the island's southern shore forms part of the Taiheiyō Belt, a megalopolis that spans several of the Japanese islands. Honshu contains Japan’s highest mountain, Mount Fuji, and its largest lake, Lake Biwa.
Most of Japan's industry is located in a belt running along Honshu's southern coast, from Tokyo to Nagoya, Kyōto, Osaka, Kobe, and Hiroshima;by contrast, the economy along the northwestern Sea of Japan coast is largely based on fishing and agriculture. The island is linked to the other three major Japanese islands by a number of bridges and tunnels. Its climate is humid and mild.
The island is roughly 1,300 km (810 mi) long and ranges from 50 to 230 km (31 to 143 mi) wide, and its total area is 227,960 km2 (88,020 sq mi), making it slightly larger than the island of Great Britain 209,331 km2 (80,823 sq mi). Its land area has been increasing with land reclamation and coastal uplift in the north due to plate tectonics with a convergent boundary. Honshu has 10,084 kilometres (6,266 mi) of coastline.
Mountainous and volcanic, Honshu experiences frequent earthquakes (the Great Kantō earthquake heavily damaged Tokyo in September 1923, and the earthquake of March 2011 moved the northeastern part of the island by varying amounts of as much as 5.3 m (17 ft) while causing devastating tsunamis). The highest peak is the active volcano Mount Fuji at 3,776 m (12,388 ft), which makes Honshu the world's 7th highest island. There are many rivers, including the Shinano River, Japan's longest. The Japanese Alps span the width of Honshu, from the 'Sea of Japan' coast to the Pacific shore. The climate is generally humid subtropical in western Japan and humid continental in the north.
Honshu is connected to the islands of Hokkaidō, Kyūshū and Shikoku by tunnels and bridges. Three bridge systems have been built across the islands of the Inland Sea between Honshu and Shikoku (Akashi Kaikyō Bridge and the Ōnaruto Bridge; Shin-Onomichi Bridge, Innoshima Bridge, Ikuchi Bridge, Tatara Bridge, Ōmishima Bridge, Hakata–Ōshima Bridge, and the Kurushima-Kaikyō Bridge; Shimotsui-Seto Bridge, Hitsuishijima Bridge, Iwakurojima Bridge, Yoshima Bridge, Kita Bisan-Seto Bridge, and the Minami Bisan-Seto Bridge), the Seikan Tunnel connects Honshu with Hokkaidō, and the Kanmonkyo Bridge and Kanmon Tunnel connects Honshu with Kyūshū.
Its population was 104 million people, according to a 2017 estimate. This represents 81.3 percent of the entire population of Japan.
The island is divided into five nominal regions and contains 34 prefectures, including metropolitan Tokyo. Administratively, some smaller islands are included within these prefectures, notably including the Ogasawara Islands, Sado Island, Izu Ōshima, and Awaji Island.
The regions and its prefectures are:
Most of Japan's tea and silk is from Honshu. Fruits, vegetables, grains, rice and cotton are grown in Honshu. [ citation needed ] Rare species of the lichen genus Menegazzia are found only in Honshu.Niigata is noted as an important producer of rice. The Kantō and Nōbi plains produce rice and vegetables. Yamanashi is a major fruit-growing area, and Aomori is famous for its apples.
Yields of zinc, copper, and oil have been found on Honshu.
Japan is an island country comprising a stratovolcanic archipelago over 3,000 km (1,900 mi) along East Asia's Pacific coast. It consists of 6,852 islands. The 5 main islands are Hokkaido, Honshu, Kyushu, Shikoku and Okinawa. There are 6,847 remote islands. The Ryukyu Islands and Nanpō Islands are south and east of the main islands.
Kyushu is the third largest island of Japan's five main islands and the most southerly of the four largest islands. In the past, it has been known as Kyūkoku, Chinzei and Tsukushi-no-shima. The historical regional name Saikaidō referred to Kyushu and its surrounding islands.
Shikoku is one of the five main islands of Japan. Shikoku is the second-smallest main island after Okinawa. It is 225 km or 139.8 mi long and between 50 and 150 km or 31.1 and 93.2 mi wide. It has a population of 3.8 million. It is south of Honshu and northeast of Kyushu. Shikoku's ancient names include Iyo-no-futana-shima (伊予之二名島), Iyo-shima (伊予島), and Futana-shima (二名島), and its current name refers to the four former provinces that made up the island: Awa, Tosa, Sanuki, and Iyo.
The Akashi Kaikyō Bridge is a suspension bridge, which links the city of Kobe on the Japanese mainland of Honshu to Iwaya on Awaji Island. It crosses the busy Akashi Strait as part of the Honshu–Shikoku Highway. It was completed in 1998, and has the longest central span of any suspension bridge in the world, at 1,991 metres. It is one of the key links of the Honshū–Shikoku Bridge Project, which created three routes across the Inland Sea.
The Kanto region is a geographical area of Honshu, the largest island of Japan. In a common definition, the region includes the Greater Tokyo Area and encompasses seven prefectures: Gunma, Tochigi, Ibaraki, Saitama, Tokyo, Chiba and Kanagawa. Within its boundaries, slightly more than 45 percent of the land area is the Kanto Plain. The rest consists of the hills and mountains that form the land borders. According to the official census on October 1, 2010, by the Japan Statistics Bureau, the population was 42,607,376, amounting to approximately one third of the total population of Japan.
The Seto Inland Sea, sometimes shortened to the Inland Sea, is the body of water separating Honshū, Shikoku, and Kyūshū, three of the four main islands of Japan. It serves as a waterway connecting the Pacific Ocean to the Sea of Japan. It connects to Osaka Bay and provides a sea transport link to industrial centers in the Kansai region, including Osaka and Kobe. Before the construction of the San'yō Main Line, it was the main transportation link between Kansai and Kyūshū.
Awaji Island is an island in Hyōgo Prefecture, Japan, in the eastern part of the Seto Inland Sea between the islands of Honshū and Shikoku. The island has an area of 592.17 square kilometres. It is the largest island of the Seto Inland Sea.
Japan has three levels of government: national, prefectural, and municipal. The nation is divided into 47 prefectures. Each prefecture consists of numerous municipalities, with 1,719 in total. There are four types of municipalities in Japan: cities, towns, villages and special wards. In Japanese, this system is known as shikuchōson (市区町村), where each kanji in the word represents one of the four types of municipalities. Some designated cities also have further administrative subdivisions, also known as wards. But, unlike the Special wards of Tokyo, these wards are not municipalities.
The Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Project is a system of bridges connecting the islands of Honshu and Shikoku across the Inland Sea of Japan, which were previously only connected by ferry. It consists of three major connections. All bridges are now controlled by the Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Expressway Company and the Japan Expressway Holding and Debt Repayment Agency (日本高速道路保有・債務返済機構). The system consists of three expressways and their respective bridge systems.
The Japanese archipelago is a group of 6,852 islands that form the country of Japan as well as the Russian island of Sakhalin. It extends over 3,000 km (1,900 mi) from the Sea of Okhotsk in the northwest to the East China and Philippine Seas in the southwest along the Pacific Ocean coast of the Eurasian continent, and consists of four island arcs from north to south: the Sakhalin Island Arc, the Northeastern and Southwestern Japan Arcs, and the Ryukyu Island Arc. The Kuril Island Arc, the Daitō Islands, and the Nanpō Islands are not parts of the archipelago.
The Kanmon Straits or the Straits of Shimonoseki is the stretch of water separating Honshu and Kyushu, two of Japan's four main islands. On the Honshu side of the strait is Shimonoseki and on the Kyushu side is Kitakyushu, whose former city and present ward, Moji, gave the strait its "mon". The straits silt up at the rate of about 15 centimetres per annum, and dredging has made it possible to build the Kitakyushu Airport at low cost.
The Great Seto Bridge or Seto Ohashi Bridge is a series of double deck bridges connecting Okayama and Kagawa prefectures in Japan across a series of five small islands in the Seto Inland Sea. Built over the period 1978–88, it is one of the three routes of the Honshū–Shikoku Bridge Project connecting Honshū and Shikoku islands and the only one to carry rail traffic. The total length is 13.1 kilometers (8.1 mi), and the longest span, the Minami Bisan-Seto Bridge, is 1,100 m (3,600 ft).
The Yosan Line is the principal railway line on the island of Shikoku in Japan, connecting the major cities of Shikoku, and via the Honshi-Bisan Line, with Honshu. It is operated by the Shikoku Railway Company, and is aligned approximately parallel with the Inland Sea coast, connecting the prefectural capitals of Takamatsu and Matsuyama and continuing on to Uwajima. The name of the line comes from Iyo (伊予) and Sanuki (讃岐), the old names of Ehime and Kagawa, respectively.
The history of rail transport in Japan began in the late Edo period. There have been four main stages:
The Seto-Ōhashi Line is a railway line operated by West Japan Railway Company and Shikoku Railway Company in Japan which links Okayama Station in Okayama Prefecture with Takamatsu Station in Kagawa Prefecture via the Great Seto Bridge. It is not a distinct railway line, but an official nickname given to a composite line formed of three different lines.
The Honshi-Bisan Line is a Japanese railway line which connects Kurashiki in Okayama Prefecture with Utazu in Kagawa Prefecture. It is owned and operated jointly by West Japan Railway Company and Shikoku Railway Company. The line is the central section of the Seto-Ōhashi Line, a service connecting Okayama and Takamatsu; as a result, the Honshi-Bisan Line is rarely referred to by itself, but rather as a part of the larger Seto-Ōhashi Line service.
The Honshu-Shikoku Bridge Expressway Company Limited, abbreviated as JB本四高速 in Japanese or HSBE in English, operates the Kobe-Awaji-Naruto, Nishiseto, and Seto-Chūō expressways and their respective bridges between the islands of Honshu and Shikoku, Japan. It is headquartered in Chūō-ku, Kōbe, Hyōgo Prefecture.
|Wikivoyage has a travel guide for Honshu .|
|Wikimedia Commons has media related to Honshu .|
MILT classification 6,852 islands(main islands: 5 islands, remote islands: 6,847 islands)