Kobe City, Hyogo

Together with Osaka, Hyogo was a base port for Kitamae-bune. In the vicinity of the port called Hyogotsu, the northwestern monsoons are blocked by the Rokko mountain range, while waves from the west are prevented by Cape Wada. Furthermore, this naturally good port was blessed with water depth and ocean-bottom sand suitable for anchorage. For this reason, it has long been known as a key point of transportation in the Seto Inland Sea and as a window for diplomacy. In addition, Kahei Takadaya opened the Etorofu route during the era of Kitamae-bune and it became crowded as the base for trade in Hokkaido goods. In addition, the Shogunate, which had been asked to open ports by foreign countries, created a port to the east in Kobe Village, which was sparsely populated at the time. This led to the development of modernism in Kobe.

  • ports of call

Cultural Properties of Kobe City

  • Kitamae-bune Collection Materials housed in Kobe University Maritime Museum

    Includes a model Japanese Kitamae-bune ship, parts of real Japanese ships, board drawings by boat-builders, carpenter tools, navigation charts, picture folding screen of a sea route, ema, etc.

  • "Funa-ema of Benzaisen ships" of Minume Shrine

    The shipowners of Kitamae-bune dedicated this to prayers for safe voyage.

  • Kitamae-bune Collection housed in Kobe Marine Museum

    Goods used for Kitamae-bune, such as an anchor, funadansu (chest made for the protection of fragile items from the turbulence of the wild sea), scale, and pencil case.

  • A lantern dedicated by Kahei Takadaya

    A lantern that Kahei Takadaya, who made their fortune through Kitamae-bune, delicated to prayers for maritime safety.

  • The tomb of Matsuemon Kuraku

    The tomb of Matsuemon Kuraku who was a shipowner of Kitamae-bune and invented the method of manufacturing canvas.

  • The site of Kahei Takadaya’s main office

    The site of a store where Takadaya, who made their wealth through Kitamae-bune, had his business base.

  • Maiko Enmei Jizo (life-prolonging Ksitigarbha)

    A Jizo that people, who made their wealth through Kitamae-bune, including Soemon Kitakaze, built to pray for marine safety.