Tsushima, Nagasaki

Tsushima (対馬市, Tsushima-shi) is an island city grouped in Nagasaki Prefecture, Japan. It is the only city of Tsushima Subprefecture and it encompasses all of Tsushima Island Archipelago, which lies in the Tsushima Strait north of Nagasaki on the western side of Kyushu, the southernmost mainland island of Japan.

Tsushima

対馬市
Tsushima City Hall

Flag

Emblem
Location of Tsushima in Nagasaki Prefecture
Tsushima
Location in Japan
Coordinates: 34°12′N 129°17′E
CountryJapan
RegionKyushu
PrefectureNagasaki Prefecture
Government
  MayorTakarabe Yasunari
Area
  Total708.61 km2 (273.60 sq mi)
Population
 (March 31, 2017)
  Total31,550
  Density45/km2 (120/sq mi)
Symbols
  TreeChionanthus retusus
  FlowerAzalea
  BirdRing-necked pheasant
Time zoneUTC+9 (JST)
Websitewww.city.tsushima.nagasaki.jp

As of March 2017, the city has an estimated population of 31,550[1] and a population density of 45 persons per km2. Its total area is 708.61 km2, 17.3% of the area of Nagasaki Prefecture.

History

An Imperial decree in July 1899 established Izuhara, Sasuna, and Shishimi as open ports for trading with the United States and the United Kingdom.[2]

On April 1, 1975, Toyotama Village was promoted to the status of a town. Mine Village was also elevated to the status of a town in the following year.

The modern city of Tsushima was established on March 1, 2004, from the merger of six towns on Tsushima Island: Izuhara, Mitsushima, and Toyotama (all from Shimoagata District), and Mine, Kamiagata, and Kamitsushima (all from Kamiagata District). Both districts were dissolved as a result of this merger.

Geography

The city of Tsushima is located on Tsushima Island and other small neighbouring islands, lying slightly to the west side of Tsushima Strait, south of the Sea of Japan and north-east of the East China Sea. The island also lies between the Korean Peninsula and the Japanese mainland. Its coastline has a total length of 915 km. Asō Bay, a prominent bay with a rias coastline, is located between the islands. Tsushima lies about 60 km from Iki, 138 km from the city of Fukuoka, and 49.5 km from Busan, South Korea.

Islands

Several other islands encompass Tsushima city, in addition to Kamino-shima and Shimono-shima, both of which makes up the Tsushima Island(s):

  • Santsu-jima (三ッ島)
  • Shimayama-jima[3] (島山島)

Flora and fauna

Tsushima cat

Native to the island is the Tsushima cat (or Tsushima leopard cat, an endemic sub-species of the leopard cat, Prionailurus bengalensis). Present on the islands since ancient times, its numbers have decreased sharply, and it is now listed as an endangered species. As of 2009, it was estimated that only 80 to 100 animals remain.

Climate

Tsushima has a humid subtropical climate (Köppen climate classification Cfa) with very warm summers and cool winters. Precipitation is significant throughout the year, but is much heavier in summer than in winter.

Climate data for Izuhara/Tsushima, Nagasaki
Month Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec Year
Average high °C (°F) 8.7
(47.7)
9.4
(48.9)
12.8
(55.0)
17.3
(63.1)
21.4
(70.5)
23.9
(75.0)
27.7
(81.9)
29.3
(84.7)
25.9
(78.6)
21.7
(71.1)
16.5
(61.7)
11.5
(52.7)
18.8
(65.9)
Daily mean °C (°F) 4.7
(40.5)
5.5
(41.9)
8.7
(47.7)
13.3
(55.9)
17.3
(63.1)
20.5
(68.9)
24.8
(76.6)
26.2
(79.2)
22.5
(72.5)
17.6
(63.7)
12.2
(54.0)
7.2
(45.0)
15.0
(59.1)
Average low °C (°F) 1.0
(33.8)
1.8
(35.2)
4.7
(40.5)
9.4
(48.9)
13.3
(55.9)
17.4
(63.3)
22.3
(72.1)
23.5
(74.3)
19.6
(67.3)
13.9
(57.0)
8.3
(46.9)
3.2
(37.8)
11.5
(52.8)
Average precipitation mm (inches) 75.5
(2.97)
92.7
(3.65)
131.2
(5.17)
209.9
(8.26)
199.3
(7.85)
317.7
(12.51)
342.7
(13.49)
242.5
(9.55)
251.0
(9.88)
115.5
(4.55)
106.4
(4.19)
54.7
(2.15)
2,139.1
(84.22)
Average relative humidity (%) 62 64 66 72 74 82 85 82 78 71 68 65 72
Mean monthly sunshine hours 135.6 125.8 164.6 160.1 186.2 134.9 134.3 175.8 127.0 159.6 142.9 141.7 1,788.5
Source: NOAA (1961-1990)[4]

Demographics and culture

The population of Tsushima Island has been decreasing significantly. Between the years of 1995 and 2000, the decline was 5.2%.[5] As nuclear families replace the traditional extended families, the average household is smaller, as is the total population.[5] The elderly comprise nearly a quarter of the population here, compared to 20.8% of the Nagasaki Prefecture as a whole, and 17.3% of the population of Japan.[5]

Religious traditions on Tsushima Island mirror those of the rest of Japan, with a majority of the population adhering to Buddhism or Shinto.

Years 1975 1980 1985 1990 1995 2000
Total Population 52,472 50,810 48,875 46,064 43,513 41,230
Age 0-14 14,449 12,845 11,615 10,050 8,352 6,834
Age 15-64 33,028 32,528 31,376 29,264 27,145 25,001
Age 65 & older 4,995 5,437 5,884 6,735 8,016 9,395
Households 14,760 15,176 15,232 15,164 15,169 15,038

[5]

Economy

Many Tsushima residents are employed as fishermen. It is also known for its pearl culture. The natural environment of the Tsushima Islands also contributes to the local tourism industry. Beaches are crowded with tourists in the summer.

Transportation

Airport

Tsushima Airport (TSJ) is approximately 10 km (6.2 mi) northeast of the city.

Seaport

Tsushima has two sea ports, Izuhara and Hitakatsu. Ferries cross to the port of Hakata on Kyūshū a few times per day. Ferries also travel a few times a week to Busan in South Korea.

Sister cities

See also

Notes

Japanese

Korean

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