The city of Kobe is located on a narrow strip of land stretching from east to west, wedged between Mount Rokko near the sea and the Osaka Bay. One of the most well known ports in Japan, it developed as an outer harbour of Kyoto, Japan's old capital, and Osaka, and flourished as a centre of trade with China and the rest of the Asian continent. Kobe opened its port to other nations in 1868 after a long isolation during the Edo period. Thereafter, Kobe welcomed myriad foreigners and foreign products blossoming as a heart of international trade. Many buildings erected during this era in the town of Kitano have been preserved, and the area has become a very popular part of the city. Its classical, yet exotic atmosphere continues to attract many visitors.

This historical background contributed to Kobe's development as an international city. The city continues to brim with entrepreneurial spirit. Foreign travellers brought with them new ideas and new cultures that helped shape the Japanese culture and lifestyle. These included sports such as football, rugby, and baseball, which have become well rooted in Japan, as well as movies, music, and a rich gastronomy. Kobe has also been at the forefront of fashion.

In addition to the Kitano area, there are many more fabulous sights to see. There are modern hotels, shopping centres, and amusement facilities in the bay area. The resplendent illumination that lights up the city at night is a truly splendid sight. You can enjoy a wide range of multi-ethnic foods in various parts of town, for example, Chinese food in Kobe's vibrant Chinatown, Nankinmachi. This city is also where "Kobe beef," an internationally recognised brand, was born. Moreover, Mount Rokko, which serves as a popular summer retreat for many foreigners since Kobe opened its port to the outside world, is endowed with a rich natural environment and charming scenery.

Kobe, a city with a population of 1.5 million that serves as the prefectural capital of Hyogo, is a seventy-five minute flight from Tokyo or two and a half hours by Tokaido-Sanyo Shinkansen (Bullet Train). It is also easily accessible from Kyoto and Osaka, as well as from the Kansai International Airport. The stadium, which hosted matches of the 2002 FIFA World Cup Korea/Japan™, is the home stadium of J.1 club, Vissel Kobe, and women's football league, Nadeshiko League champions, INAC Kobe.