Fukuoka (the area of Kashii, Hakata, Sawara and Imazu) is said to be the oldest city in Japan, because it is the nearest city to China and Korea. The area around Fukuoka is among the oldest non-Jomon settlements in Japan. Dazaifu was an administrative capital in 663 A.D., but some say [weasel words] a prehistoric capital was in the area. Ancient texts such as the Kojiki and archaeology confirm this was a very critical place in the founding of Japan. Some scholars even go as far as to claim it was the first place outsiders and the Imperial Family set foot, but like many early Japan origin theories, it remains contested. See History of Japan. Fukuoka is sometimes still referred to as Hakata, the central ward of the city.