The Kyushu Region is Japan's third largest island with generally mountainous features. Kyushu's notable architecture can be seen in the unique type of fortress called the Gusuku.
Kyushu has two of Japan’s major cities, Fukuoka and Nagasaki. Fukuoka is Japan's second fastest growing city, a cosmopolitan tourists’ favourite with large business and commercial centres. The city's main residential area is the Jonan-ku ward.
Despite its more modern approach to development, Jonan-ku lacks sufficient infrastructure that connects it to the rest of the city. Moreover, it has a chaotic jumble of apartment buildings, houses and shops, without a defined centre.
Nagasaki was the other target for the atomic bombing during the Second World War. After its reconstruction, it emerged as a modern city that thrives on the shipping industry and port activities.
The Okinawa Prefecture hosts the United States' military bases on the island. Generally, the prefecture is highly developed, especially in the cities of Okinawa and Nago.
Kyushu is frequently hit by typhoons, so most homes in the region have low concrete structures with barred windows.
Osaka is one of the most developed cities in Japan and is part of the second largest area in the country, the Osaka Metropolitan Area. Similar to Tokyo, it is an important commercial, economic and business centre.
Each of Osaka’s wards has dominant functions. The Chuo-ku ward, not to be mistaken for the ward with the same name in the Kansai region, is the financial, commercial and tourist centre in the city, whereas Fukushima-ku has a mix of commercial, business and residential developments.
Hirano-ku is the most populated ward in Osaka, with over 200,000 residents. The Ikuno-ku ward has a significant number of Korean-Japanese residents and Korean-themed businesses.
The Naniwa ward has popular residential districts. The entertainment centres of Namba district generally attract the younger generations. Osaka’s most popular bars, restaurants, nightclubs, arcades, pachinko parlours and major shopping centres are in Namba. The district of Tennoji-ku is the opposite; it has sleazy entertainment strips.
Nishinari-ku is similar to Naniwa ward with its famous shopping streets and entertainment centres. The Kamagasaki neighbourhood, however, hosts many day labourers and has the highest number of the homeless in Osaka.
High-class residential neighbourhoods can be found in the Sumiyoshi-ku ward, where a number of old and established clans and families reside. However, there are also areas which are generally middle class. The ward has a number of shrines and shopping areas, and parkland.