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Kitano area

KitanoKitano area mapKitano is an elevated area at the foot of mountains, and is located about 1 km northwest of San'nomiya station.
Many Western-style residences built from the 1890s to the 1930s are here, and this area is one of the most popular spots in Kobe.

In Japanese, these residences are called "Kitano-ijinkan" collectively.

When Kobe port was opened as an international port in 1868 after long national isolation, the foreign settlement was constructed near Kobe Port. It is the current Kyu-kyoruchi area.
But it had taken time to construct the settlement, so many foreigners built their residences at the other place.
And some of them were built in Kitano area.

In 1945 during World War II, the main area in Kobe was destroyed by air raids, but Kitano area wasn't attacked because of the foreigner's resident area.
So most of the original residences remain here.

The formal town names in this area are Kitano-cho and Yamamoto-dori, and the area is about 800 meters from east to west and about 400 meters from south to west in width.
A total of 34 old Western-style residences are designated as important traditional buildings.

Most of the residence charge 300-1,000 yen.
The discount tickets that we can enter several paticular residences are sold.
(500 yen two residences / 1,300 yen for three residence / 3,500 yen for nine residences)

Main residences in Kitano area

  • Kazamidori-no-Yakata /1/ : Former Thomas House (1909). "Kazamidori" means "weathercock", and the residence has a weathercock on the steepletop.
    This is the most famous residence in Kitano area, and is designated as a national important cultural property.
    The owner was Gottfried Thomas, a German trading merchant.
  • Moegi-no-Yakata /2/ : Former Sharp House (1903). "Moegi" means "yellow-green".
    The owner was Hunter Sharp, US Consul-General.
  • Oranda-kan /3/ : Former Erion's House (1949). "Oranda" means "the Netherlands".
    The owner was Charlie Erion, a Dutch trading merchant.
  • Uroko-no-Ie /4/ : Former rented house for foreigner (1905). "Uroko" means "fish scale", and the walls of the house look like fish scales.
    Uroko Museum is next to the house, and has many paintings by well-known European painters.
  • Parastain House /5/ : The resident of a Russian trading merchant (1914).
    The first floor is a cafe.
  • Former Panama Consulate /6/ : Former Hilton House (the 1910s ?).
    It was used as Panama Consulate after World War II.
  • Line-no-Yakata /7/ : Former Drewell House (1915).
    The nickname was chosen from among the public in 1978. Exactly, we can see many lines on the walls.
  • Eikoku-kan /8/ : The residence of the British (1909). "Eikoku" means "British".
    There is a gorgeous bar in the residence.
  • France-kan /9/ : The rented house built in Kyu-kyoryuchi in 1908. Later it was moved to here.
    The interior design is French style.
  • Kitano-monogatari-kan /10/ : Originally it was the residence built in 1907.
    It was destroyed by the Great Hanshin Earthquake in 1995, and this house was rebuilt with following the original house.
    The first floor is a cafe.

How to get to here

On foot

  • About 10 minutes from Shin-Kobe station on Shinkansen and subway.
  • About 15 minutes from San'nomiya station on JR, Hankyu and Hanshin Lines.



Kitano area and Mount Rokkou Kazamidori-no-Yakata
Weathercock on the residence Inside of Kazamidori-no-Yakata
Moegi-no-Yakata
Illuminated Moegi-no-Yakata
Oranda-kan Uroko Museum, Uroko-no-Ie
Parastain House Former Panama Consulate
Line-no-Yakata Eikoku-kan
France-kan Kitano-monogatari-kan
Night view of central Kobe from Kitano area

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Spots in Kobe city and Hyogo Prefecture

Kyu-kyoryuchi
Nankinmachi Chinatown
Meriken park
Harborland
Sorakuen
Kitano area
Mount Rokko
Arima onsen
Nada sake breweries
Akashi-kaikyo Bridge

Himeji Castle
Engyoji
Kinosaki onsen
Nojima Fault