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Yokohama Chinatown with a history of over 150 years is Japan’s largest Chinatown.

Yokohama Chinatown, with more than 600 restaurants and stores within an area of around 500 meters square. is far larger than the other two Chinatowns in Japan, in Kobe and Nagasaki.

About 5,000 Chinese living in this Chinatown and its vicinity are working here. This Chinatown, which is said to be one of the largest Chinatowns in the world, dates back to a foreign settlement in Yokohama built in 1859, when Yokohama Port was opened to foreign countries.  The Tokugawa shogunate abolished the national seclusion policy, which was running over 200 years, in the mid-19th century.  Many foreign traders rushed to Yokohama and the Tokugawa shogunate built the foreign settlement for them.  Population wise, Westerners had exceeded Chinese in the settlement, till the end of the 19th century though, after the Great Kanto Earthquake in 1923 that completely destroyed Yokohama, most Westerners went back to their home country and only Chinese remained there.  The settlement became a de-facto Chinatown, thereafter.  Between 1993 and 2003, gates were built at the east, west, south and north entrance to the Chinatown, giving the area a more Chinese atmosphere.  Today, the Chinatown has become one of Japan’s most popular tourist destinations and is always crowded with sightseers.


Licensed tour guide, travel consultant,

Masahisa Takaki.

全国通訳案内士 高木聖久。



 

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