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Hakodate (函館) is a city in Japan. The city is located within the Hokkaido Prefecture and is capital of the Oshima Sub-prefecture. The city is close to Mount Hakodate which is covered in forest. This city is located near the coast, and has an international trade port. The population of this area almost reaches 300,000 people over 680 square kilometers. The cities tree is the Japanese Yew and the Flower is the Azalea.

The economy mainly survives on agricultural development and goods. This area leads the country in production of rice and fish. Vegetable farming is popular and is not far behind the biggest producers. There is some light industry including paper milling, beer brewing and food production. The people of this are mostly employed by the service sector.

Tourism is one of the most important industries in this city and throughout this area because of natural occurrences. During the Summer time campers come to enjoy the hot springs and beautiful outdoors. During the winter skiing and other winter sports brings other people here.


Hakodate was founded as a settlement in 1454 when Kono Kaganokami Masamichi made his palace there. This made the city start gaining in population. Masamichi brought some prosperity to the area. When Japan signed a treaty with the United States in 1854 Japan ended its isolation and this was the third international port to open up. Since then this town has been quick to welcome western culture. On August 1st, 1922 the town was awarded city status.

In 1910 Eastern Orthodoxy came to Japan when Russia built a magnificent church there. This church has now been renamed to the Japanese Orthodoxy church. There are several Anglican and Catholic churches built near by. This is significant because it began a religious revolution in this area never experienced before because of how isolated Japan was.

Points of Interest

The Russian Orthodox Church, also known as Gan-Gan Dera representing the six large bells in its bell tower, is a very popular tourist destination. Built in 1859, it was the first Greek Orthodox Church in Japan and was attached to the Russian consulate. In 1907 the church burned down. In 1916 it was rebuilt and is a site to see. There are many famous and interesting paintings to see inside.

There are many interesting sites to see in the Suehiro district and the Motomachi district. Many tourists come here. This area used to have a shipyard and a foreign settlement. In 1879 it turned into a warehouse district. The redbrick Kanamori Warehouse was constructed in 1909 and is known as the Hakodate History Plaza which houses the Hakodate Beer Hall and an imported gift shop.

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