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Fukuoka (Japanese: 福岡市, Hepburn: Fukuoka-shi, pronounced [ɸɯ̥kɯokaꜜɕi]) ([ɸɯ̥kɯꜜoka] ⓘ) is the sixth-largest city in Japan, the second-largest port city after Yokohama, and the capital city of Fukuoka Prefecture, Japan. The city is built along the shores of Hakata Bay, and has been a center of international commerce since ancient times. The area has long been considered the gateway to the country, as it is the nearest point among Japan's main islands to the Asian mainland. Although humans occupied the area since the Jomon period, some of the earliest settlers of the Yayoi period arrived in the Fukuoka area. The city rose to prominence during the Yamato period. Because of the cross-cultural exposure, and the relatively great distance from the social and political centers of Kyoto, Osaka, and later, Edo (Tokyo), Fukuoka gained a distinctive local culture and dialect that has persisted to the present.
|First official recorded||57 AD|
|City Settled||April 1, 1889|
|• Mayor||Sōichirō Takashima (since December 2010)|
|• Designated city||343.39 km2 (132.58 sq mi)|
(June 1, 2021)
|• Designated city||1,603,543|
|• Density||4,700/km2 (12,000/sq mi)|
|• Metro||2,565,501 (5th)|
|Time zone||UTC+9 (Japan Standard Time)|
|– Tree||Camphor laurel|
|– Bird||Black-headed gull|
Fukuoka is the most populous city on Kyūshū island, followed by Kitakyushu. It is the largest city and metropolitan area west of Keihanshin. The city was designated by government ordinance on April 1, 1972. Greater Fukuoka, with a population of 2.5 million people (2005 census), is part of the heavily industrialized Fukuoka–Kitakyushu zone.
As of 2015[update], Fukuoka is Japan's fifth largest city, having passed the population of Kobe. In July 2011, Fukuoka surpassed the population of Kyoto. Since the founding of Kyoto in 794, this marks the first time that a city west of the Kansai region has a larger population than Kyoto.