The Japan Mint is issuing the most extensive and beautiful series of coins in its historycommemorating 47 Prefectures. The large Prefecture 40 mm. coins are being minted in gem proof quality from 99.9% pure silver, limited to 100,000 of each, and picture local scenery in full color. Hyogo is featured on the new Prefecture coin. The design features the Oriental White Stork, as well Himeji Castle, an ancient castle that was restored in 1580 & became a Japanese National Treasure in 1951. Official American distributor Panda America offers these in original government packaging with a Certificate of Authenticity. Earlier issues in the Prefecture Series, that was launched in 2008, are still available from Panda America.