Perched on Honshu's central coast, Nagoya is the fourth largest urban center in Japan. It is also a perfect illustration of the Japanese national story. Japan's colorful history and love for tradition are embodied in the might donjons of Nagoya Castle, built by the first Tokugawa shogun. Two celebrated shrines - one Shinto, the other Buddhist - are found in the city center. Yet Nagoya also embodies Japan's love of modernity and its thirst for technological innovation. The city is home to the very model of a major multinational corporation - Toyota. Tradition and change. Esthetics and innovation. In its own quiet manner Nagoya embodies the essence of the Japanese way.
Toyota's corporate headquarters are in Nagoya, while the company's excellent museums and factories are scattered about the city and environs. Toyota began life as a manufacturer of industrial looms: Toyota Motor Corporation was spun off from its parent company in 1937.