Before the Meiji Era, Ehime was known in Japan as Iyo Province and was, since the time of the Heian Period, held mostly by sailors and fishermen who were critical in the defense of Japan against raiding parties of Mongols and pirates.
The Tokugawa Shogunate, following the Battle of Sekigahara, bestowed the Iyo Province to multiple allies – most prominent of whom was Kato Yoshiaki, the builder of Matsuyama Castle, where the current city of Matsuyama is built. The name given to Ehime after the Meiji Restoration and the reapportionment of lands in Japan means “beautiful maiden”.
The region in which Ehime currently sits is in the Northwestern most corner of Shikoku, Japan and faces to the Seto Inlands Sea. The prefectures of Kagawa and Tokushima border Ehime to the East and the prefecture of Kochi borders it to the South.
The land within the prefecture is home to a combination of mountains and a long coastline along the sea as well as the Sadmisaki Peninsula – Japan’s longest.
Cities within Ehime Prefecture include:
Ehime is divided into 7 primary districts in which multiple towns and villages reside. The current list of districts and primary towns of note includes:
Ehime’s primary industries largely include chemical and oil manufacturing and refinement, paper and textiles, and shipbuilding. The rural areas are known for their agricultural production and fishing and the harvesting of fruits like the mikan and iyokan.
Also located in the prefecture and a primary supplier of employment in Ikata is the nuclear power plant which supplies power to a greater portion of Shikoku.
In Ehime, there are not as many destinations as in Southern prefectures, but it is well known for some attractions. Saijo is the gateway to the mountain, Ishikuchi, while Ikata is a vacation home to many Southern city dwellers due to its mountain and coastal setting. Dogo Onsen is well known in the area as well as one of Japan’s oldest and most prominent hot springs.