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How Japan's Itoshima became an international hub for creators

Once an isolated coastal town, it is now ranked world's third-best small city

Located on Japan's main southern island of Kyushu, Itoshima has become a hotspot for international creatives keen to capitalize on the city's iconic beaches, mountains, and rivers. (Photo courtesy of Itoshima City Tourism Association)

ITOSHIMA -- Located in western Fukuoka prefecture on the main southern island of Kyushu, the sleepy seaside town of Itoshima was virtually unknown outside Japan in the year of my birth in 1993.

Growing up, I noticed that even many Japanese weren't so sure, as I was often asked whether Itoshima was an isolated island. What a difference 30 years makes.

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