The Kansai region is expected to continue garnering attention in coming months and years as a string of major international events takes place in the area through 2025.
One high-profile event on the calendar is the 2019 Rugby World Cup, which will be held in Japan for the first time between Sept. 20 and Nov. 2. Of the event’s 12 venues, two are located in Kansai: Higashi-Osaka Hanazono Rugby Stadium (www.rugby-osaka.hanazono.pref.osaka.jp/english/index.html) and the Kobe City Misaki Park Stadium in Hyogo Prefecture. Sports fans also will not want to miss the World Masters Games 2021 Kansai (wmg2021.jp/en/), which will be held across the region over 17 days from May 14 through May 30 in 2021. The quadrennial multisports competition will feature 59 events covering 35 sports, including karate and basketball.
Osaka will also host the World Expo 2025 on Yumeshima, a man-made island in Osaka Bay, between May 3 and Nov. 3. Under the theme, “Designing Future Society for Our Lives,” Expo 2025 Osaka Kansai (www.expo2025.or.jp/en/) is expected to showcase Japan’s cutting-edge technologies, particularly in the fields of life science and biotechnology.
Last but not least, the Mozu-Furuichi Kofungun — large ancient tumulus clusters in southern Osaka — is expected to be registered as a UNESCO World Heritage site in June or July. (www.mozu-furuichi.jp/en/) If listed, the tomb site is sure to boost Kansai’s international reputation.