Frequently Asked Questions

Getting Here

Where is Hyogo Cultural Centre located?

Block D Tuart College, Hodgson Street (near corner of French Street), Tuart Hill. The Centre faces onto Hodgson Street and is a stand alone building.

Does the centre have free parking?

Yes. There are plenty of free parking bays immediately in front of the Centre. Please pay careful attention to street signage when parking on the road as parking is prohibited in many areas.

How far is Hyogo Cultural Centre from Perth City?

Hyogo Cultural Centre is located approximately 10km north of the Perth CBD.

Is the centre located near public transport?

Yes, there are many buses operating in the area with bus stops along Wanneroo Road and Stoneham Street.

Are there bike racks?

No, but you are welcome to ride your bike and lock it up near the front door.

Are baby strollers permitted in the Centre?

Yes.

Is the Centre wheelchair accessible?

Yes, the Centre is accessible for wheelchairs and has an accessible bathroom facility.

Are there restaurants in the area?

The Centre is located only minutes from Wanneroo Road, Main Street, and Scarborough Beach Road, each of which are lined with numerous cafes and restaurants.

Hours and Admission

When is the Centre open?

The Centre is open from Tuesday to Saturday, 10am to 4pm and is closed Sundays, Mondays, and all public holidays. Where a public holiday falls on a Monday the Centre will be closed on the Tuesday instead.

Can anyone visit the Centre?

Yes, anyone is welcome to visit and it is free if you are just looking at the displays and resources. As the Centre is often running school visit activities, language classes, and workshops, it is worthwhile checking staff availability prior to your visit if you are hoping to speak with someone or require assistance.

Do I need to be a member to use the library resources?

No, you are more than welcome to come into our office to do your research and obtain information. However, if you would like to take the resources home for further reading, you would need to become a Member of the Centre (see membership information section below).

Hyogo Prefectural Government Cultural Centre

Is the Centre a profit making business?

No, the centre is a non-profit organization, which is fully funded by the Hyogo Prefectural Government, Japan.

What can I see at Hyogo Prefectural Government Cultural Centre?

Hyogo Cultural Centre is a resource centre with many Japanese cultural items and art on display, including a replica traditional Japanese room with tatami mats and shoji screens. You can see a variety of dolls, wedding kimono, calligraphy, and other artefacts. HPGCC also has a well-stocked library of books, DVDs, and Japanese Language Proficiency Test materials available for loan to our Members. The newest addition to the Centre’s displays is a Japanese Garden designed by local Japanese Landscaper, Eiji Morozumi and built by Hyogo Cultural Centre Members, volunteers, and staff. The garden includes a stone lantern and bridge, entrance gate, waiting area, large rocks, small stones, and Awaji tiles all the way from Hyogo.

What facilities are available at HPGCC?

The Centre is very proud to offer the largest Japanese language and culture resource library in WA, a relaxed lounge / foyer area, a 100sqm classroom that can be transformed into an open space or used for art displays, a lecture theatre with screen and sound system for film screenings, fully equipped kitchen, Japanese garden, and traditional Japanese room.

Membership

What are the benefits of becoming a HPGCC member?

You will be entitled to borrow resources from HPGCC library, you will receive discounts for HPGCC events and you will receive regular updates about HPGCC activities by email or post.

How do I find out more about membership before joining as a member?

Please feel free to call HPGCC on 9201 9789, email konnichiwa@hyogo.com.au or visit the membership page of our website.

Who are HPGCC members?

Everyone! From young to not so young, Australians, Japanese…any culture!

How much does it cost to become a member?

2021 Membership costs $30 per person and is valid for the 2021 calendar year, January to December.

How do I become a Member?

The best way to join the Centre is by visiting us in person to complete the registration form and pay by cash or card. We are happy to sign you up and allow you to borrow resources on the same day. If, however, it is not convenient for you to visit us in person, you can print out the PDF version of our application form on our website, fill in your details, and either post back to us or scan and email with proof of bank transfer.

I am a current Member. How can I change my name and/or address?

Please notify HPGCC of any changes to your name and/or address by calling 9201 9789 or sending an email to konnichiwa@hyogo.com.au

Do I have to become a member before I attend one of your events?

No, membership is generally not a prerequisite for attending an event. However, if a fee is applicable, members receive a discount. If membership is status is required for attendance, eg with language classes, the membership fee is built into the registration fee. Please note that our weekly language exchange event on Saturday afternoons, Chatterbox, is free for members and $2 each visit for non-members.

How can I stop the e-news from Hyogo Cultural Centre ending up in my junk, bulk or spam folders?

Add our email address to your contacts list.

Workshops and Courses

Do you offer workshops and courses?

Hyogo Cultural Centre offers a wide range of seminars, events, and workshops at different times of the year. Regular events include our Japanese Conversation courses for adults on Thursday and Saturday mornings plus our Saturday afternoon language exchange event, which everyone is welcome to attend.

What kinds of workshops are available?

Our workshops, demonstrations and seminars are themed on language, life and culture, exhibitions of Japanese arts and crafts, and the promotion of educational, sporting, youth and cultural exchange. Events are often organized when we receive visiting artists from Japan or special groups from Hyogo Prefecture. For this reason we are unable to provide an annual calendar. If you become a member, you will receive all event information from us by regular emails, so there is no danger of missing out!

How do I arrange a visit for a school group or a group of adults?

All groups are requested to make a booking prior to visiting to avoid any interruption to scheduled events and to ensure a staff member is available to welcome you. Workshops for school groups must be booked at least three weeks in advance. School teachers are encouraged to call the Centre on 9201 9789 to discuss the requirements of their specific group.

What kinds of events take place at HPGCC?

Art exhibitions, academic seminars, language exchange sessions, cultural workshops, demonstrations, language lessons, film screenings etc. Please visit our events calendar to view any upcoming activities.

How can I join HPGCC events or activities?

It is very simple and convenient! You can just review the event notifications on our website or Facebook page. Book the events you are interested in by calling 9201 9789 or emailing konnichiwa@hyogo.com.au. It should be noted that we don’t always advertise our events as, if we can only accept a small number of participants, we tend to find the places are quickly filled by current members. The best solution is to become a Member and you will receive direct emails from us!

What services are available to teachers?

HPGCC has the largest resource library of Japanese language and cultural materials. By joining HPGCC teachers can borrow these materials to assist them in preparing class activities. In addition, Hyogo Cultural Centre provides professional development sessions in conjunction with JLTAWA and The Japan Foundation.

Hyogo Prefecture FAQs

Where is Hyogo?

Hyogo Prefecture is located almost in the centre of the Japanese archipelago, and straddles the 135th meridian which is used to define Japanese Standard Time Zone. It is situated in the western part of the Kansai Region (Midwest Japan) facing Seto Inland Sea to the south and the Sea of Japan to the north.

What is the capital of Hyogo?

Hyogo’s capital is Kobe.

What is Hyogo’s population?

According to 2020 statistics, approximately 5.45 million people live in Hyogo.

How do you get to Hyogo?

By Plane: There isn’t currently a direct flight from Perth to Kansai Airport, but there is a direct ANA flight into Tokyo. There are many options for flying from Perth to Kansai International Airport (KIX) via other major international carriers with short stopovers.
By Train: One of the world’s fastest trains, the Shinkansen (bullet train), runs from Kobe to destinations east and west, making the travel time from Kobe to Tokyo only about three hours.

Why visit Hyogo?

As a result of Hyogo’s diversified climate and abundant natural features, swimming and other marine sports can be enjoyed in the summer, while in the winter skiing can be enjoyed in Tajima. Arima hot springs, one of the oldest in Japan, as well as Kinosaki and Yumura hot springs, are all popular tourist attractions in Hyogo Prefecture. Himeji Castle is perhaps the most famous draw card for Hyogo and looks stunning whether it is covered in snow in the winter or surrounded by cherry blossoms in the spring.

What are Hyogo’s main attractions?

Some of Hyogo’s main attractions include:

Himeji Castle. It is one of the oldest surviving structures from medieval Japan, and has been designated as both a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a Japanese National Cultural Treasure. Known as the “Castle in the Sky”, the ruins of Takeda Castle sit atop a mountain in Asago city north of Himeji. The best time to view the castle is on a misty Autumn morning just before sunrise when it is surrounded in clouds. Views from the Castle are quite breathtaking.

Hanshin Koshien Ball Park, one of the biggest ball-parks in Japan, it is the home-ground of the HANSHIN Tigers, a famous Japanese baseball team.

Mt. Rokko overlooks Kobe with an elevation of 931 metres. During the autumn season, it is famous for the rich change in colours of its forests.

The Arimafuji Park is a nice place to bring your own picnic lunch and enjoy nature! There is also a little mountain called Arimafuji. They call it this because it is said to resemble Mt. Fuji.

The Myoken Cable and Lift is a nice way to view the flowers during different seasons.
Kobe is also the home of world famous Kobe-beef.

Kinosaki Hot Spring for relaxation and rejuvenation.

The Akashi-Kaikyo Bridge. It is the longest suspension bridge in the world with a total length of 3911 meters. Adjacent to the bridge is Maiko Tower, which offers panoramic views over the bridge from the top.

Seto Inland Sea National Park.

What is Hyogo known for?

Iron, steel, textiles, food processing, and lumbering are the main industries of Hyogo, which has industrial centers at Kobe, Akashi, Amagasaki, Himeji, and Nishinomiya. Hyogo Prefecture is home to internationally renowned companies such as Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Ltd. and Kobe Steel, Ltd.

Many major Japanese companies, including Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Ltd., Toshiba Corporation, Fujitsu Ltd., and Mitsubishi Electric Corporation, have research and manufacturing facilities in Hyogo. Recently, Hyogo is creating a name for itself as a venue of technological innovation and development in fields related to nanotechnology.

Japan FAQs

Where is Japan located?

The Japanese archipelago lies in the north-west corner of the Pacific Ocean. It stretches 3000kms from northeast to southwest and includes more than 1000 islands. Japan’s nearest neighbours are Russia to the north, Korea to the west, and Taiwan and China to the south-west.

How big is Japan?

The approximate area of Japan is 378,000km. Western Australia is about 7 times larger than Japan, with an area of approximately 2,525,500km.

What are the main islands of Japan?

The four main islands are Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu.

What is Japan’s population?

Approximately 126.2 million people live in Japan (2020). The population density is around 334 people/square km.

What is the capital city of Japan?

Tokyo (meaning “Eastern Capital”) became the capital city of Japan in 1868, at the beginning of the Meiji Period. The capital was determined by where the Emperor resided (previously this had been in Kyoto). Tokyo is located on the main island of Honshu in the north-eastern part of Japan in what is known as the “Kanto” region. Tokyo was formerly known as Edo, but the name was changed to Tokyo when the Emperor and governing body relocated there.

Who is Japan’s Prime Minister, and to which political party does he belong?

The Prime Minister is Mr Yoshihide Suga (since September 2020). He is the leader of the Liberal Democratic Party of Japan (LDP).

Who is the current Emperor of Japan?

The present day Imperial Family consists of Emperor Naruhito, who assumed the throne when his father, Emperor Akihito abdicated. His Majesty, Emperor Naruhito, is the 126th sovereign in the traditional count and is married to Empress Masako. They have one daughter, Aiko Princess Toshi.

How many National Holidays are there in Japan?

There are 16 National Holidays (some holiday dates were altered in 2020 and 2021 to coordinate with the Olympic timing):

元日 Ganjitsu: New Years Day, January 1.
成人の日 Seijin no Hi: Coming of Age Day. Originally held on January 15, but now celebrated on the second Monday in January.
建国記念の日 Kenkoku Kinen no Hi: National Foundation Day, February 11.
天皇誕生日 Tenno Tanjoubi: Emperor’s Birthday, February 23.
春分の日 Shumbun no Hi: Vernal Equinox Day, held around March 20.
昭和の日 Showa Day: April 29.
憲法記念日 Kempo Kinembi: Constitution Memorial Day, May 3.
みどりの日 Midori no Hi: Greenery Day, May 4.
子供の日 Kodomo no Hi: Children’s Day, May 5.
海の日 Umi no Hi, Marine Day: Originally held on July 20, but now celebrated on the third Monday in July.
山の日 Mountain Day: August 11.
敬老の日 Keiro no Hi: Respect for the Aged Day. Originally held on September 15, but now celebrated on the third Monday in September.
秋分の日 Shubun no Hi: Autumnal Equinox Day, held around September 23.
体育の日 Taiiku no Hi: Health and Sports Day. Originally held on October 10, but now celebrated on the second Monday in October.
文化の日 Bunka no Hi: Culture Day, November 3.
勤労感謝の日 Kinro Kansha no Hi: Labour Thanksgiving Day, November 23.

What is “Nihon Sankei”?

This term means “three views of Japan”, and refers to three famous scenic spots in Japan.

Matsushima: A group of islands in Miyagi prefecture.
Amanohashidate: This “Bridge of Heaven” is a pine tree covered sandbar in Kyoto prefecture.
Miyajima: An island in Hiroshima prefecture.

Make sure these three spots are on the itinerary for your next trip to Japan!

What are the seasons like in Japan?

Spring: March – May. Spring is well known as cherry blossom time in Japan. The Japanese celebrate the blooming of these trees with Hanami parties – cherry blossom parties, which involve lots of food and karaoke! April and May are fairly warm and stable weather wise, so they are good times for travel. Be aware of the Golden Week period though (end of April to early May) as that collection of public holidays means everyone is travelling and trains and popular tourist sites can be exceptionally crowded.

Summer: June – August. Summer begins with the rainy season in Japan, and continues with high humidity, warm to hot temperatures and occasional showers throughout the season.

Autumn: September – November. Although autumn begins with occasional showers, it is another fairly stable season, with blue skies and relatively warm temperatures. Autumn, like spring, is a sentimental favourite on the seasonal calendar because of the changing colour of the leaves on trees in various gardens and wilderness areas of Japan. A highly scenic season!

Winter: December – February. Cold westerly winds from Siberia mark the start of winter. In the internal parts of Japan, snowfall is heavy, making the area a paradise for snow lovers. On the Pacific coast of Japan, temperatures are mild and rarely fall below freezing. However, don’t forget to take a warm jacket!

Do you need a Visa to travel to Japan?

In general, Australian Passport holders will be issued a 90 day tourist visa upon arrival in Japan. In most cases obtaining a visa prior to departure is not required. If you are travelling on a non-Australian Passport please check with a licensed Travel Agent or the Japanese Consulate. Japanese immigration procedures now require all visitors to be electronically finger printed and photographed upon arrival.

What is the Japanese currency?

The Japanese currency is YEN. Coins are 1, 5, 10, 50, 100 and 500. Notes are 1,000, 2,000, 5,000, and 10,000. Although Australian dollars can be exchanged at major hotels and banks, it is not recommended to take Australian dollars to Japan, as you will find the exchange rate for cash is very low. We recommend you exchange your money prior to travel to Japanese yen travellers cheques and/or Japanese yen. Credit cards are readily becoming more acceptable, but smaller shops and regional areas may still only accept cash so you should always carry some cash in Japan.

Do I need to take an electricity adapter?

Yes. The voltage used throughout Japan is uniformly 110 volts, A.C. A convertible type of electrical appliance such as a hair dryer, travel iron and shaver can be used, otherwise a transformer is required to convert the voltage. There are no columnar-shaped plugs or 3-pin plugs used in Japan but 2-flat-pin plugs are used instead. It is therefore advised to purchase a plug adapter beforehand.

Is it safe to drink the water in Japan?

Tap water is safe to drink anywhere in Japan. Mineral water including major imported brands can be easily obtained from super markets, convenience stores and other similar places.

What is the time difference between Japan and Australia?

Japan is one hour in front of Western Australian time.

What religions do Japanese people practice?

Shinto and Buddhism have both become important parts of daily Japanese life. On New Year’s Eve, for example, the ringing of Buddhist temple bells fills the air. And on New Year’s Day, people visit both Shinto shrines and Buddhist temples to pray for good fortune in the coming year.

During the spring and autumn equinoxes and also Bon festival (in July and August), families perform Buddhist memorial services for their ancestors. Also through the year, towns and villages hold lively Shinto festivals, where participants carry portable shrines around on their shoulders and tow floats through the streets.

Christianity has also taken root in Japan; a Jesuit missionary from Spain, Francisco de Xavier, introduced the religion to Japan in the sixteenth century. The country’s military rulers banned Christianity during the Edo period (1603-1868), but it made a comeback during the Meiji era (1868-1912).

If your question has not been answered above, you may like to visit our Centre and peruse our extensive library of resources.

Life in Japan:
Facts, tips and updates

About Hyogo
Sister State Relationship