Kansai (関西地方) is the western region of the main Japanese island of Honshu, second only to Kanto region of Eastern Japan in population. The area is also known as Kinki District, literally “near the capital” (referring to ancient capital Nara and Kyoto), and its three big cities — Osaka, Kyoto, and Kobe — as Keihanshin.
Kansai region includes is famous for the rich cultural heritages from ancient times and is the spiritual heart of Japan.
Over thousands of years, as pilgrims converged in Kumano, in Wakayama, a blending of spiritual and cultural traditions took place in Kansai.
Differences between Kansai and Kanto (the eastern region dominated by Tokyo) are slight but numerous. Kansai people speak a distinctive dialect of Japanese, use lighter-colored soy in their cooking, ride on the other side of escalators and are renowned for humor and their love of food.
Kansai’s cuisine runs the gamut of gastronomy from street stall snacks to the nation’s representative high-end dining traditions.
Omihachiman, the little Green Venice on Lake Biwa.