Saturday, 3 April 2010

Kobe Tourist Information Centre

One of the first things I do on arrival at any destination is visit the tourist office to collect maps and brochures about things to do that I might have missed during my Internet research before I left.
The Kobe Information Centre has relocated to outside Portliner Sannomiya Stn close to JR Sannomiya Central East Exit. Follow the signs to Portliner and you will find. The staff at the Sannomiya office (nicknamed ‘Hello Kobe') were very friendly and helpful when I visited recently to gather information for friends visiting soon. Another office is located within Shin-Kobe Stn, where the bullet train arrives. 

The Kobe Convention and Visitors Association publishes 9 detailed maps (shown above) that cover various areas of Kobe and feature places to visit. The maps are written in Japanese, English, Chinese and Korean. However, the information on the back is mostly in Japanese only. If you cannot visit the information centre during business hours, you can obtain these colourful maps at various locations around Sannomiya and Motomachi, such as convenience stores, museums, hotels and some restaurants.
Available over the counter at the tourist office is the Kobe Guide Book that is packed with information on Kobe that you will not find in any guide book on Japan. This well presented booklet gives brief explanations of the sites at various locations around Kobe, souvenir hints, museums, a list of annual festivals and other useful information for visitors to Kobe.  The association also publishes Kobe Welcome Coupon a brochure full of coupons to use at various museums and facilities around the city. These coupons are only available to foreign tourists. You can obtain a copy at the tourist offices or download them from the official website to print out before you go.  These brochures and maps are also available at Kansai International Airport. Business Hours: Kobe Information Center (Sannomiya): 9 a.m. ~ 7 p.m. Shin-Kobe Tourist Information Center: 9 a.m. ~ 6 p.m. Official Web Site: Feel Kobe (

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