Main City: Morioka
Population: 1,196,000 people, ranking 32/47 prefecture (2021)
Area: 15,275 km2
Geographical / Landscape description
Iwate Prefecture is the second largest prefecture of Japan after Hokkaido and has the lowest population density of any prefecture outside Hokkaido. The prefecture has a mountainous landscape with peaks as high as 2,000m.
Cold and snowy winters (some areas can record temperatures as low as -15°C) while a summer Foehn effect provides warm temperatures during summer.
Recent history, culture
In 2009, the UNESCO officially elected the Hayachine Kagura as a Masterpiece of the Oral and Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Originating in Iwate, the Hayachine Kagura is a traditional theatrical dance involving masked dancers accompanied by drum, cymbals and flute. The origin of the dance is linked to the Shinto religion and aimed to honour the gods. Kagura literally means “god-entertainment”.
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