Kobe Tourism

The history of this place is said to have begun with the construction of the Ikuta Shrine by Empress Jingu in AD 201. However the city itself did not exist 1889. Compared to other major Japanese cities, Kobe’s political history is quite fractured. For a brief time in the 12th century it was capital of Japan. It is also the site of one of Japan’s most important historical battles – the battle of Ichi-no-Tani of the Genpei war.

Much of the local development was precipitated by the city is location close to the sea. In 1853, when Japan’s by the sea of seclusion was ended, Kobe was one of the first port cities. During World War II Kobe suffered some air-bombing damage, with about 20% of its area destroyed. Of late, the only notable historical event to have taken place here was the 1995 Hanshin earthquake. As a result of the earthquake, the city lost its position as one of the top ports in Asia.

The layout of the city is long and narrow, as it lies between the coast and the mountains that run parallel each other. The city has a population of 1.5 million people. Several major Japanese companies have their headquarters here, including Kawasaki Industries and Mitsubishi Motors.

Essential travel information and Kobe tips for your visit

Essential Info

  • Time Zone: Japan Time Zone UTC+09:00
  • Currency: Yen
  • Electricity and Internet: 100 Volts, plug types A and B & Ungrounded two pins/ grounded three pins.
  • Languages: Japanese; many people speak basic English.
  • Security: Police: 110, Ambulance/Fire: 119

Off-Beaten Path

  • Venus Bridge
  • Rokko International music box museum
  • UCC Coffee Museum


  • Do not tip waiters or taxi driver or any service staff.
  • Tipping tour guides is alright, but present the money in an envelope. It’s rude to hand it right out of your wallet or hand.

Tourist Traps

  • ArimaOnsen
  • Mount Rokko
  • Chinatown


  • Bow when greeting.
  • Learn Japanese honorifics. Add a suffix ‘-san’ to most people’s names.
  • Slurp, soupy & wet foods.
  • the small wet cloth before meals is for your hands only.
  • Remove shoes before entering dwellings; remove slippers before getting onto tatami; and don’t wear bathroom slippers anywhere outside the bathroom.
  • Don’t be too outspoken or gregarious. It’s rude.
  • Since people barely speak English, it’s best to thoroughly know your travel and tourist information before hand.

Kobe Trip Planner

Plan your customized day by day trip plan for Kobe. Choose from various experinces categories as adventure, romantic and family and kids friendly for your trip using using Kobe trip planner.

The best tours and activities in the city, guided by experts to give you a local insight to the best of Kobe

Ask question in category
  • hi! what is the elevation of the city of Kobe in Japan, please? also, what is the elevation of Osaka, too? thank-you!

    Answer Report Abuse
    • Wikipedia mentions that Osaka's highest point is 37.5 meters whereas I remember reading somewhere that Kobe's elevation is around 30 meters. 

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