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Regional Focus: Seiyo

A rural city in southwestern Shikoku, home to one of the island’s two Geoparks.


Western Shikoku facing the Uwakai Sea


A rural ‘city’ made up of five towns, Seiyo extends from the Uwakai Sea in the west to the mountainous exterior of Shikoku in the west. The whole of Seiyo is a Geopark, where the economic and cultural life of the residents reflects the unique geology and geography of the region.


Museums, beaches, watersports, sake breweries, festivals, a pilgrimage temple, hiking, caves, game meat


Hotels, ryokan, guesthouses, campsites

Regional Focus: Seiyo

Seiyo City in Ehime Prefecture is a rural city of 42,600 people on the southwestern side of Shikoku facing the Uwakai Sea. Although its population merits it the name ‘city’, it has no large urban centre. Indeed, Seiyo only came into being in 2004, with the merger of the towns of five towns, Uwa, Nomura, Shirokawa, Akehama, and Mikame. However the towns of Seiyo each have a distinct character and rustic charm. Seiyo is designated a Geopark, indicating a unified area that advances the protection and use of its unique geological heritage in a sustainable way, and promotes the economic well-being of the people who live there.  

The city hall of Seiyo is located in Uwa, making this the main town. Uwa is known for its streets of traditional buildings, some dating back to the Edo period, with working sake and soy sauce breweries. It’s also home to many fine museums, including the Museum of Ehime History and Culture. Uwa lies somewhat inland of the Uwakai Sea in an expansive basin surrounded by mountains. The floor of this basin is used for growing high-quality rice.

Nomura and Shirokawa are both inland, bordering Kōchi Prefecture. Their mountains and valleys are cloaked in plantation forests which supply timber and game.

Akehama and Mikame are on the Uwakai Sea coast. Along the rocky, indented coastline are picturesque fishing villages and terraced fields cut into the mountains where delicious citrus of many varieties are grown.

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