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Relocating to Iwakuni?

Destination Guide for Iwakuni-city, Yamaguchi-pref, Japan, including a brief overview of Iwakuni-city with some pictures and information about expat-related facilities.

 

We hope this information will be a valuable resource to expats coming to or currently residing in Iwakuni-city, as well as the HR department of foreign companies.

 

Iwakuni - Destination Guide for Expats

Iwakuni City lies in the far eastern part of Yamaguchi Prefecture facing Hiroshima Prefecture from across Koze River. Iwakuni lies in between Hiroshima City and Shunan City making it a part of the Setouchi Industrial Area. Iwakuni has prospered for a long time as a sightseeing spot for the Kintai Bridge and for a white snake habitat that is considered a natural memento for the country. In pre-war times it played the role of a military city. After the war, Iwakuni came to be known as a city of the bases. Iwakuni is host to the military bases of the U.S. Forces Japan (the Marine Corps) and the Self-Defense Forces (the Marine Self Defense Force.) Both militaries have their bases in Iwakuni Airport (as MCAS IWAKUNI/JMSDF Iwakuni Air Base) on the delta plain of the Nishiki River. It is also known as a scenic city with an attractive natural landscape such as the shoreline, the islands, the rivers, the valleys, and the mountains. It faces the Seto Inland Sea and is blessed with a warm climate throughout the year.

In contrast to its early days after WWI, Iwakuni's infrastructure has developed into one that supports an international population. This can be accredited to the increase of foreign tourists visiting, as well as Iwakuni's relationship with the US military base after the war, and the start of a sister city program, with various foreign cities. In the recent years, when Iwakuni's traffic infrastructure, an airport, a harbor, and an expressway, was improved and its access to domestic and overseas locations became convenient, support for foreign residents became well-developed. The Iwakuni International Sister City Exchange Association was established to promote international cultural exchange, on a local city level and on a private level, by sending and inviting the exchange participants and providing various educational classes for them. International Exchange Network Iwakuni provides foreign residents in the city and the surrounding neighborhoods with free consultations regarding guidance for daily living, interpretation services, and Japanese language classes. There are also various medical facilities in the city that offer services in foreign languages allowing foreign residents who don’t speak Japanese to live without worry.

There are schools on the US base, all the way from elementary to high school, that allow non-military families' children to attend when there are vacancies. If you don't mind a little extra travel, there are also International schools in Hiroshima that your children can attend. Exchange programs, as well as various events hosted by the US base, are taking place year round. Japan America Society (JAS) Iwakuni helps to support "Friendship Day" held on the US Military base, and hosts other various events throughout the year promoting exchange between the residents on the base and in the neighborhood. Iwakuni city is an active city having many faces such as a historical tourist city, a scenic city full of rich nature, a manufacturing city from old times, and a city of military bases.

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