Kobe may be a stylish modern metropolis, but it has also preserved a wealth of historic culture, in a unique blend of old and new. It’s also known for breaking new cultural ground – as Japan’s birthplace for jazz, golf, marathon running, cinema and more. The Hyogo Prefectural Museum of Art celebrates the creations of local artistic talents, housing a collection of 10,000 mostly modern works, plus regular special exhibitions showcasing the most topical artistic creations from Japan and abroad. The Takenaka Carpentry Tools Museum, the only one of its kind nationwide, showcases fascinating insights into Japan’s woodworking culture and implements. Sorakuen, meanwhile, is a Japanese oasis of greenery featuring a centuries-old garden, a 500-year old camphor tree and European architecture in a beautiful and harmonious setting.