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“Maru” Yama Gawa
The Maruyama River

The water here was blessed with abundant wetlands.
Abundant wetlands that were once equally abundant with Oriental White Storks.
After World War II, agricultural development took precedence over protecting the environment, and the storks disappeared from the skies of Japan.

Towards an urban
coexistence with
humans and storks.

There is an ecosystem rich in life throughout the Maruyama River. The natural environment, Toyooka’s culture, industry, human’s views and lives have been shaped by this diverse community of living beings. The manifestation of “en” has blessed both humanity and the storks, and gives birth to new ideas for the future.

We invite you to visit Toyooka and find yourself in the city of dancing storks.

Our Story

Toyooka City’s goal is to be a “Local & Global City” by deriving its identity from local values and making the most of regional resources such as local culture, the unique environment, and human connections:

Those who have worked tirelessly to reintroduce storks to the skies of Japan.
Those who are dedicated to spreading new farming methods that nurture living creatures.
Those who restored Izushi Eirakukan, the oldest Kabuki playhouse in the region, and made Kabuki a symbol of the town.
Those who built a school with a dream to transform Japan’s largest bag industry into the world’s best.

Through its people, Toyooka continues to challenge itself in an ever-changing world while remaining true to its roots.


Toyooka City is located in the northern Hyogo Prefecture.
It is a part of the San’in Kaigan Geopark, and is rich in natural wonders.
Toyooka experiences annual heavy snowfall, a rare phenomenon in the southwestern part of Honshu Island.
Kannabe, Toyooka’s famed ski resort town, welcomes crowds of tourists every year to ski the powdery slopes.
The additional sights of Izushi Castle Town, the Genbudo Caves, and more, presents visitors with many other options for sightseeing.

Kinosaki Onsen has a history dating back over 1,300 years. Before visiting the seven mystic hot springs of Kinosaki Onsen, there was originally a custom of visiting Onsenji Temple before bathing in order to learn the proper way of honoring the hot springs.
Because the hot spring water of the town is limited, an ordinance was passed in Kinosaki Onsen to limit the size of the indoor household baths with the seven mystic hot springs serving as the large public bathhouses for the community.
Visitors to Kinosaki Onsen are encouraged to hop to all seven of the public hot springs, admiring the old-fashioned ambiance of people wearing yukata (summer kimono) and geta (wooden clogs) throughout the town.

The rich culinary scene of Toyooka is a portion of any trip to our area that cannot be missed.
Tajima beef holds an extremely high reputation by culinary experts around the world.
Matsuba crab is known as the apex of crab delicacies.
Stork-friendly rice grown using pesticide-free farming methods and vegetables with the “Stork Dance” mark can be consumed worry-free.

A rural landscape with storks reclaiming their home in the skies.
Natural farming methods rooted in a strong conviction.
A community effort to protect the town’s limited hot spring resources.
Flexibility to face new challenges through community teamwork.
Become enveloped and feel at home in the attractive lifestyle of Toyooka’s welcoming locals.


Base Plan

Know the Storks
and “En” in Toyooka

The stork once disappeared from the skies of Japan due to loss of habitat through harmful farming practices. Toyooka, the last place in Japan where storks were seen flying in the skies, has been working tirelessly to return storks to their home in the wild.
The Oriental White Storks of Toyooka have returned and now live in a rich environment that embraces symbiosis and the lives of others.

3 Experiences

Choose 1 of 3 unique experiences.

  1. 01Nature
  2. 02Cultural
  3. 03Local

01.「En」with nature in Toyooka.

Nature Experience

An effort is currently underway in the Maruyama River communities to increase the number of Oriental White Storks, a special natural treasure, in the wild. The Maruyama River has a rich ecosystem, and there is also a growing drive to conserve the river’s landscape. In the town of Hidaka-Kannabe near the Maruyama River, the local ecosystem is also a part of the topography of a lava plateau from the once-active volcano Mt. Kannabe and is a perfect setting for outdoor activities.

02.「En」from roots in Toyooka.

Cultural Experience

In the past, many storks nested in the pine trees on the mountains in Izushi, attracting many visitors. Izushi Castle. Sara Soba (buckwheat noodles). A traditional townscape. Eirakukan, the oldest playhouse in the Kinki region. Restored and revived by the townspeople.
We invite you to enjoy the “Little Kyoto of Tajima,” where the life, culture, customs, and aesthetics of living together with the storks have been preserved.

03.「En」 with people in Toyooka.

Local Experience

Experience Toyooka's farming industry that has been promoted and developed safely and securely with natural river water from the mountains while utilizing the "Stork Nurturing Farming Method". The rich ecosystem of the Maruyama River has nurtured not only migratory storks, but the bag industry as well. Enjoy all that Toyooka has to offer while interacting with the local residents.


We would like to help you with creating tours to sell to your clients. We can get you in touch with local hotels, restaurants, and activity providers to help you provide quality tours for your customers.

Toyooka Tourism Innovation General Inc. Assoc.
5F Tajima Jibasangyo Shinko Center 1-79 Oisocho Toyooka Hyogo JAPAN 668-0041