Ōita Prefecture is on the north-eastern section of the island of Kyūshū. It is 119 kilometers from east to west, and 106 kilometers from north to south, with a total area of 6,338.82 square kilometers.
Surrounded by the Suo Channel and Honshū Island to the north, the Iyo Channel and Shikoku Island to the east, it is bordered by Miyazaki Prefecture to the south, and Fukuoka Prefecture and Kumamoto Prefecture to the west. It is divided between north and south by a major tectonic line running from Usuki City in Ōita Prefecture to Yatsushiro City in Kumamoto Prefecture, which is to the west of Ōita. There are several other tectonic lines running from east to west through the prefecture. The northern part of the prefecture features granite and metamorphic rocks, while the southern area features limestone, which is the foundation for the Tsukumi cement industry, and several limestone caves. The Kirishima Range is a volcanic belt that runs vertically through the prefecture and contributes to the many hot spring sources that make the region a popular tourist attraction, and makes Ōita the prefecture with the largest number of hot springs in the whole country.
Mountain ranges include Mount Yufu, Mount Tsurumi, Mount Sobo, Mount Katamuki, and Mount Kujū (which is called the "roof of Kyushu"). These mountain ranges contribute to the fact that 70% of Oita is covered by forests, and the rivers and streams that flow from these ranges give the prefecture rich water sources. The prefecture's major water sources are Yamakuni River, Yakkan River, Ōita River, Ōno and Banjō River, and Beppu Bay and the Bungo Channel.
Mount Kujū (九重山) is surrounded by highlands called the Kujū Highlands and the Handa Highlands. There are open plains throughout the prefecture with Nakatsu Plain in the north, Oita Plain in the center, and Saiki Plain in the south. The inland areas consist of basin +valleys in Hita, Kusu, Yufuin and Taketa, which were formed by lava buildup in combination with river erosion.
Ōita has a 759 kilometer coastline that has shoals in the north, Beppu Bay in the center, and a jagged or sawtooth "rias coastline" in the south. Sea cliffs, caves, and sedimentary rock formations that can be found in Saiki City's Yakata Island are considered very rare outside of coral reef areas. Ōita's coastal waters contribute to a prosperous fishing industry.
As of April 1st 2014, 28% of the total land area of the prefecture was designated as Natural Parks, namely the Aso Kujū and Setonaikai National Parks; the Nippō Kaigan, Sobo-Katamuki, and Yaba-Hita-Hikosan Quasi-National Parks; and the Bungo Suidō, Jinkakuji Serikawa, Kunisaki Hantō, Sobo Katamuki, and Tsue Sankei Prefectural Natural Parks.
Cities and TownsEdit
- Hayami District
- Higashikunisaki District
- Kusu District