Looking to discover the different charms of Japan? Why not go south to Kyushu Island and visit Fukuoka? Exploring Japan wouldn’t be complete without visiting the southern island of Kyushu. Fukuoka is a bright metropolitan city that you definitely should go and check out! Worry not, we have a list of five things to do in Fukuoka for you!
Things to Do in Fukuoka, The Highlight of Kyushu!
Located in the northern part of Kyushu Island, Fukuoka is a vibrant metropolitan city that has become the highlight of Japan’s southwestern island. Due to its strategic geographical position, Fukuoka is a popular travel destination for foreign tourists from neighboring countries such as South Korea and China and is popularly known as the “Gateway to Asia” due to its accessibility from major cities in Asia.
How to Get There
For domestic visitors, Fukuoka Prefecture is accessible via airplane, shinkansen (bullet train), bus, and ferry.
The fastest means of transportation for you to reach Fukuoka is by plane as it only takes around 2 hours from Tokyo and 1 hour and 15 mins if you are departing from Osaka. There are two airport options for landing depending on your itinerary–Fukuoka International Airport and Kitakyushu Airport.
It is very easy to find a flight from Tokyo as the Tokyo Haneda-Fukuoka route is one of the busiest air routes in the world and there are a lot of flight fare options you can choose from according to your budget! If you choose to take a flight to Fukuoka, you don’t need to worry about getting to the city as Fukuoka International Airport is Japan’s most accessible airport being just a five-minute train ride away from Hakata Station!
You can also reach Fukuoka via shinkansen! If you are departing from Tokyo, you can take the Nozomi train which takes around five hours, as Tokyo and Fukuoka are connected by the Tokaido/Sanyo Shinkansen route. You can use your Japan Rail Pass for Hikari and Sakura trains, but be aware that you will have to transfer trains at the Shin-Osaka Station and it will take an hour longer than the Nozomi train.
Unlike flight fares, there aren’t many options for shinkansen–this might be another thing you should consider before buying your ticket!
Night buses are another option that you can consider! You can check out Nishitetsu for their night bus service if you are departing from Tokyo. The trip takes around 14.5 hours to reach Fukuoka.
If you are departing from Tokyo, you can travel via ferry all the way to Fukuoka! The one-way trip to Fukuoka takes around 34 hours and you will arrive in Shin-Moji Port in Kitakyushu. You will need to take another trip to Fukuoka after taking the ferry using a taxi, train, or shinkansen. You can check the Ocean Tokyo Ferry website for more information.
Take a Walk at Ohori Park
Located at the heart of Fukuoka, Ohori Park (大濠公園) was originally built as Fukuoka Castle’s outer moat and was designed after China’s Xi Hu (West Lake). Many locals and tourists who visit find this park to be a relaxing place to have a calm walk. The park itself has a large lake inside it and people go to exercise, cycle, walk and even just sit around the lake.
Visitors can also get on canoes or swan-shaped paddle boats to go around the lake while taking in the combination of nature and city scenery around the park. If you are a coffee lover, worry not because you can get your caffeine supply from the Starbucks in the park. You can access this park using the Nishitetsu Bus and Fukuoka City Subway Airport and get off at the Ohori Park station and bus stop.
Address: 1 Ohorikoen, Chuo Ward, Fukuoka, 810-0051
Marvel at the Nanzoin Temple
Your adventure in Fukuoka should also include a visit to Nanzoin Temple. Here you will be able to see the Nehanzo buddha statue in Japan which is 41 meters long and weighs more than 300 tons–way bigger than the statues in Kamakura and Nara!
This temple is famous for its good luck. If you are into photography, this temple is an interesting place to explore and look for exciting places to take photos as every corner of the temple is very stunning!
Address: 1035 Sasaguri, Kasuya District, Fukuoka 811-2405
Exploring the Kokura Castle and Katsuyama Park
Kokura Castle (小倉城) is the only castle you will find in Fukuoka prefecture, and you can find it in Kitakyushu City. The architecture of the castle itself is pretty similar to other castles that you might have seen in other prefectures, however, you can see an interesting visual contrast to the city buildings around the castle complex.
If you want to see the blooming cherry blossom or hanami, the castle grounds or commonly known as Katsuyama Park is one of the best places to do it in Fukuoka!
Address: 2-1 Jonai, Kokurakita Ward, Kitakyushu, Fukuoka 803-0813
Spoil your Taste Buds with Fukuoka’s Delicacies
No matter where you go, no trip is complete without tasting the local delicacies, and that is exactly why you need a food adventure should be one of the things to do in Fukuoka! The first thing that you need to try out is the famous Hakata Ramen with its white milky tonkatsu (pork bone) broth. You can basically find this delicious local ramen everywhere in Fukuoka, from small ramen shops to big franchises like Ichiran and Ippudo!
You should also have a taste of Fukuoka’s delicious marinated cod roe or mentaiko, especially the spicy (karashi) mentaiko which is Hakata’s specialty. And if you are a seafood fan, you should try out the delicious Itoshima Oyster! Open from October to April every year, you will be able to find more than 30 Oyster Huts along six fishing harbors in Itoshima-shi!
However, your food adventure in Fukuoka will not be complete without a night out in Fukuoka’s famous street food stalls or yatai! While you can pretty much find yatai in most parts of Fukuoka, you should definitely check out the Nakasu and Tenjin area for the best experience! Not only will you spoil your taste buds with delicious street food treats, but you will also feel the warmth of the local community!
Relax your Mind and Body at the Akizuki Onsen Seiryuan
Credit: Romeo A (Unsplash)
If you are looking for some relaxing me-time or quality time with your family, friends, or partner in a hot bath, Akizuki Seiryuan (秋月温泉 清流庵) is a great place for you to visit during your stay in Fukuoka! Located at the hills of the Little Kyoto, Asakura-shi, you will be greeted by a 7,900 square meter lot and a huge beautiful Japanese garden that offers different beautiful sceneries as the season goes by.
Putting an emphasis on exclusivity, you will be able to enjoy the place without any worry of big crowds as they only have six elegant Japanese-style rooms for anyone to stay the night. In each of these rooms, there are hot spring baths to be used privately. For you who are on the go and just wants to take a quick relaxing bath, you can visit the onsen on the weekends and holiday for just ¥1,500!
Not only that, but you can also enjoy the finest Japanese cuisine and relieve your stress in the private sauna and salon there. Definitely a great getaway destination from the busy city! You can reach this place by car, bus, or train.
Address: 1058 Akizuki, Asakura-shi, Fukuoka 838-0001
Which of These Five Things to Do in Fukuoka Looks Most Exciting?
Exploring new places on a new island is definitely one of the charms of traveling in Japan. Kyushu Island has so much for you to explore and one of them is Fukuoka Prefecture. You will find a very vibrant port city that will definitely spice up your trip!
Which of these five things to do in Fukuoka excites you the most? Why not go and book a flight to Fukuoka now!
Nadira Anamika Utari
More destinations for your trip around Japan!
- Five Must-Visit Art Museums Around Japan
- Exploring the Natural Beauty of Miyazaki Prefecture
- Winter Wonderland: What To Do In Zao Onsen
- SLOW TRAVEL OKINAWA – Family Adventure Time: Fun, educational outdoor and cultural experiences
Featured image credit: Canva