|Native name: 九州|
Kyushu region of Japan and the current prefectures on the island of Kyushu
|Area||36,782 km2 (14,202 sq mi)|
|Highest elevation||1,791 m (5,876 ft)|
|Highest point||Mount Kujū |
|Pop. density||307.13 /km2 (795.46 /sq mi)|
Kyushu (九州 Kyūshū, literally "Nine Provinces"; Japanese: [kʲɯːꜜɕɯː]) is the third largest island of Japan and most southwesterly of its four main islands.  Its alternative ancient names include Kyūkoku (九国, "Nine Provinces"), Chinzei (鎮西, "West of the Pacified Area"), and Tsukushi-no-shima (筑紫島, "Island of Tsukushi"). The historical regional name Saikaidō (西海道, lit. West Sea Circuit) referred to Kyushu and its surrounding islands.
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The island is mountainous, and Japan's most active volcano, Mt Aso at 1,591 metres (5,220 ft), is on Kyushu. There are many other signs of tectonic activity, including numerous areas of hot springs. The most famous of these are in Beppu, on the east shore, and around Mt. Aso, in central Kyushu. The island is separated from Honshu by the Kanmon Straits.
Today's Kyushu Region (九州地方 Kyūshū-chihō) is a politically defined region that consists of the seven prefectures on the island of Kyushu (which also includes the former Tsushima and Iki as part of Nagasaki), plus Okinawa Prefecture to the south:
- Northern Kyushu
- Southern Kyushu
Most of Kyushu's population is concentrated along the northwest, in the cities of Fukuoka and Kitakyushu, with population corridors stretching southwest into Sasebo and Nagasaki and south into Kumamoto and Kagoshima. Excepting Oita and Miyazaki cities, the eastern seaboard shows a general decline in population.
- Designated cities
- Core cities
Parts of Kyushu have a subtropical climate, particularly Miyazaki prefecture and Kagoshima prefecture. Major agricultural products are rice, tea, tobacco, sweet potatoes, and soy; silk is also widely produced. The island is noted for various types of porcelain, including Arita, Imari, Satsuma, and Karatsu. Heavy industry is concentrated in the north around Fukuoka, Kitakyushu, Nagasaki, and Oita and includes chemicals, automobiles, semiconductors, and metal processing.
Besides the volcanic area of the south, there are significant mud hot springs in the northern part of the island, around Beppu. These springs are the site of occurrence of certain extremophile micro-organisms, that are capable of surviving in extremely hot environments. 
Japanese motor manufacturer Lexus has a large, state of the art, manufacturing plant in Kyushu.
Major universities and colleges in Kyushu:
- National universities
- Kyushu University - One of seven former "Imperial Universities"
- Kyushu Institute of Technology
- Saga University
- Nagasaki University
- Kumamoto University
- Fukuoka University of Education
- Oita University
- Miyazaki University
- Kagoshima University
- National Institute of Fitness and Sports in Kanoya
- University of the Ryukyus
- Universities run by local governments
- University of Kitakyushu
- Kyushu Dental College
- Fukuoka Women's University
- Fukuoka Prefectural University
- Nagasaki Prefectural University
- Oita University of Nursing and Health Sciences
- Prefectural University of Kumamoto
- Miyazaki Municipal University
- Miyazaki Prefectural Nursing University
- Okinawa Prefectural University of Arts
- Major private universities
- Fukuoka University - University with the largest number of students in Kyushu
- Kumamoto Gakuen University
- Ritsumeikan Asia Pacific University
- Seinan Gakuin University
- Kyushu Sangyo University - Baseball team won the Japanese National Championship in 2005
- University of Occupational and Environmental Health
- Kurume University
The island is linked to the larger island of Honshu by the Kanmon Tunnels, which carry both the San'yō Shinkansen and non- Shinkansen trains of the Kyushu Railway Company, as well as vehicular, pedestrian, and bicycle traffic. The Kanmon Bridge also connects the island with Honshu. Railways on the island are operated by the Kyushu Railway Company, and Nishitetsu Railway.
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