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Kobe is located between the sea and the mountains and sits right across the bay from Osaka. Like Yokohama, it’s a major port city and was one of the first to open up to foreign trade following the end of Japan’s period of isolation.

While perhaps most famous for its Kobe beef, this compact city also boasts Japan’s most famous hot spring, a popular fashion week and a stylish mix of Japanese and Western culture. The port area is especially nice to spend time in, with plenty of cafes and public spaces to relax and study Japanese in.

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