Kobe, Hyogo Prefecture
Where did you think Kobe beef came from?
Kobe’s Misaki Park Stadium will be hosting four unforgettable 2019 Rugby World Cup matches.
Back in January 1995, the city was ravaged by the strongest ever earthquake to hit Japan, but you’ll soon understand why the mascot of Kobe is a phoenix.
Just like the resilient bird, the city rose from the devastation and triumphantly re-emerged as a modern hub brimming with culture.
Misaki Park Stadium
This intimate, compact stadium guarantees all guests an up-close view of all the action during the Rugby World Cup. The approximately 30,000 seat stadium hosted three games during the 2002 FIFA World Cup and is home to Japan’s first Top League rugby union, the Kobelco Steelers!
What to do before and after the 2019 Rugby World Cup
Kobe World Festival
An annual international cultural exchange where you can enjoy food, beer, culture, and performances from around the world. The event will take place over the first weekend of October at two different locations and is free to attend, just pay for your food and drinks!
- Sat. Oct. 5 to Sun. Oct. 6.
- Sat: Kobe Port Oasis, 5-2 Shinkō, Chūō, Kobe, Hyogo. Sun: Minatomori Park, 2 Onohama, Chūō, Kobe, Hyogo - Map
What to eat
Imagine going all the way to Kobe and not trying their world-famous beef. The extremely juicy and beautifully-marbled meat is made exclusively with cows born and raised in Hyogo Prefecture. A little pricey, but definitely worth it.
For the highest quality of Kobe beef, head over to Kokubu Steak House. Make a reservation in advance to secure your spot!
- Hours: 5:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. Closed Sunday
- 1-21-2 Kitanagasadori, Chuo, Kobe, Hyogo - Map
This is Kobe’s variation of popular Japanese street food takoyaki (octopus-stuffed dough balls). Akashiyaki is made with an egg-based batter, making it fluffier and softer than regular takoyaki. Dip it in flavorful dashi (fish broth) before eating.
Located just five minutes away from Kobe Station is Akashiyaki Kikucho, a cafe specializing in this delicacy. Their akashiyaki has an extremely soft and creamy texture.
- Hours: 11 a.m. to 10 p.m.
- 1-7-2 Higashikawasaki, Chuo, Kobe, Hyogo - Map
Ikanago no Kugini
These tiny fish that have been boiled in slightly-sweet soy sauce are often served as a side dish with rice or tofu. You can purchase these guys in stores all over Kobe as a souvenir, or try it out at multiple local shops.
Sightseeing around Hyogo
Due to its elegance, beauty, and imposing size, Himeji Castle is both a national treasure and a World Heritage Site. The striking white structure is considered Japan’s most spectacular castle for surviving all wars, earthquakes, and fires since its completion in the 1400s. It has since gone through extensive renovations but is still one of the twelve original castles of Japan.
- Hours: 9 a.m. to 4 p.m.
- ¥1,040 for adults; ¥360 for elementary and junior high school students
- 68 Honmachi, Himeji, Hyogo 670-0012 - Map
Also known as Nankinmachi, this colorful and festive neighborhood is packed with Chinese restaurants, bars, and shops. It’s one of only three Chinatowns in Japan.
- 1 Chome-3-18 Sakaemachidori, Chuo Ward, Kobe, Hyogo 650-0023 - Map
- Getting there: From Kobe Station, take the Tokaido-Sanyo line to Motomachi Station. Many shops are centered around here.
How to get there
- Take the Tokaido Sanyo Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Shin-Kobe Station which takes about two hours and 40 minutes. From there, you need to catch a train to Minatogawakōen Station and then a bus that will take you to Misaki Park Stadium.
- Kobe is about seven hours away via the Shin Tomei Expressway.
- The closest airport is Kobe Airport.
From Kobe Airport
- From the airport take the port liner to Sannomiya Station and then the local train to Misakikoen Station. The stadium is a seven-minute walk from there.