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Culture / Tour Spots in Kagoshima Area

  • Chiran Peace Museum
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    4.5
    611 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Minamikyushushi Chiranchoukori 17881
    This museum collects materials and personal items relating to the special attack unit (kamikaze unit) active at the end of World War II. The museum was erected on the site of a former launch base with the aim of preserving records of the time for future generations and in a prayer for peace. Parties of 10 or more can listen to a storyteller with advance reservation. The museum also provides English, Chinese, and Korean audio guides. A five-minute walk from the Tokkokannon-iriguchi bus stop.

    We caught the Chiran local bus from Kagoshima Chuo bus station from bus stop 16 . Cost 940 Y. Take a ticket as you board and you pay when you leave. You get change from a 1000y note. Bus winds up...

  • Museum Shoko Shuseikan
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    4.0
    132 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Yoshinochou 9698-1
    This is a museum adjacent to Sengan-en. The collection hall is a group of factories that the Satsuma lord Shimazu Nariakira built for industrial development at the end of the Tokugawa period. The museum building was originally completed in 1865 as a machine factory. Currently it is utilized as a place to communicate the history of industrialization of the Shimazu family and Satsuma clan. In addition to the buildings, some of the exhibits are nationally designated Important Cultural Properties.

    Established by Lord Shimazu in 1852 to produce armaments, glass, ceramics and farm tools, this was Japan's first Western-style factory. It's now a museum detailing the 700 year Shimazu family...

  • Kagoshima City Museum of Art
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    4.0
    58 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Shiroyamachou 4-36
    This is a private art museum which is built on the ruins of Tsurumaru Castle Ninomaru which was once the castle of the Satsuma Lord Shimazu. The collection focuses on works by local writers and Western art since the 19th century. It also has oil paintings by Cezanne and a “Water Lily” painting by Monet. The collection of paintings depicting Sakurajima, the symbol of Kagoshima, is also spectacular. It is a 16-minute walk from Kagoshima Station.

    First room is mostly European artists, some very famous. There were some works I'd not seen before. 2nd room more Japanese artists. Not huge but ok for entrance fee of ¥300 for permanent collection...

  • Yakusugi Museum
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    4.0
    72 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kumagegunyakushimachou Ambou 2739-343
    This museum located on the east side of Yakushima Island provides information on Yakushima cedars and the ecology of Yakushima. The museum contains numerous hands on exhibits such as the Inochi Branch, a tree branch which broke off of the Jomon Sugi due to the weight of a heavy snow, and a cross section from a 1,660 year old Yakushima cedar tree. The exhibit which lets visitors shave off Yakushima wood to smell the distinctive perfume and a cedar wood grain puzzle are particularly popular with children. Normally requires around 45 minutes to see the whole museum.

    A lovely spot (the floor alone is worth a visit to study) for an introduction to the history of the cedars, the logging industry, the local people, the island and its forests. Great hands on...

  • Yakushima Umigame-Kan
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kumagegunyakushimachou Nagata 489-8
    This museum is dedicated to investigating the ecology of the sea turtles that lay their eggs on Yakushima Island’s Inakahama Beach, one of Japan’s most important sea turtle egg beaches, as well as to protecting the surrounding area. The museum presents information gathered on the turtles so far as well as specimens. From summer to autumn, the museum conducts a short term program to raise freshly hatched sea turtles with the goal of protecting the species and their ecology. As the museum is frequently closed in winter, it is recommended that you check in advance before visiting. A three-minute walk from the Nakanobashi stop on the bus bound for Nagata.
  • Tanegashima Space Center Space Science and Technology Museum
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    4.5
    50 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kumagegunminamitanechou Kukinaga Mazu
    A museum adjoining Japan’s largest rocket launch site. The museum presents exhibits on the construction of satellites and the design of JAXA rockets. With an advance reservation, visitors can enjoy an expert guided tour of not just the museum but the entire Tanegashima Space Center. The tour is free and held three times a day (excluding Mondays and the New Year’s holidays). Reservations are accepted by phone on a first come, first serve basis. Approximately 50 minutes by car from Tanegashima Airport.

    This is a nice museum - particularly so as it's free - that offers an intricate view of rocket history and technology in the area. Though most of the displays are in Japanese, there are English tour...

  • Tanegashima Development Center Firearm Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Nishinomoteshi Nishinomote 7585
    The distinctive exterior of this museum is modeled after a “nanbansen” one of the foreign European ships that first visited Japan. The museum displays a variety of ancient firearms, such as a Portuguese gun which made its way to Tanegashima in 1543 and examples of the first guns ever made in the country. The museum also has dioramas and videos presenting the history and culture of Tanegashima; stopping by the museum first before exploring the rest of the island will make your visit that much more interesting. A 10-minute walk from Nishinoomote Port.
  • Kirishima Open-Air Museum
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    4.5
    68 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Airagunyusuichou Koba 6340-220
    An expansive outdoor art museum located on a plateau 700 meters above sea level on Mt. Kurinodake (1,094 meters) in Yusuicho, Airagun, Kagoshima Prefecture. The extensive grounds are dotted with 23 works of art by Japanese and international artists which make use of the local terrain and natural beauty. One of the distinguishing features of the museum’s pieces is that in addition to be able to be enjoyed visually, visitors are free to touch and even lean on them. Most museum goers enjoy taking photos together with the unique exhibits. The distinctive rectangular art hall contains the museum’s indoor exhibits and special exhibitions as well as a cafeteria where visitors can take a break.

    Love this open air museum! Good for a family trip or a trip with friends. A nice place to relax and take heaps of pics with the sculptures. The drawback would be the difficult access. You can only...

  • Museum of the Meiji Restoration
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    4.0
    379 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Kajiyachou 23-1
    Satsuma (now western Kagoshima Prefecture) was the birthplace of Saigo Takamori, Okubo Toshimichi, and numerous other heroes of the Meiji Restoration. The Museum of the Meiji Restoration uses a variety of means to present the history of Satsuma and Japan during that momentous time. The centerpiece of the museum is the historic dramas shown in the Meiji Restoration Experience Hall on the basement floor. In the “Road to the Restoration,” life-sized robotic models of figures such as Saigo Takamori and Okubo Toshimichi and multiple projection screens are used to present a stunning drama. In the “Satsuma Students, Go West” exhibit, the story of the students sent to study overseas in England in defiance of the national government is presented.

    If you are interested in the history of Japan and the Meiji restoration/period especially than this museum is an absolute must. Nicely located on the river within walking distance of the Kagoshima JR...

  • Hirakawa Zoological Park
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    4.0
    115 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Hirakawachou 5669-1
    A municipal zoo located in Kagoshima City, Kagoshima Prefecture which cares for some 1,000 animals of around 140 species, including the park’s popular koalas. The facility is distinguished by its use of Kagoshima’s natural beauty and hot springs, and visitors can enjoy a relaxing hot spring foot bath while watching animals and the African Savanna where giraffes and other African animals stroll about backed by such sights as Sakurajima and Kinko Bay. Many of the park’s exhibits are fenceless and complete recreate the animal’s natural environment, giving visitors the opportunity to learn about the animals’ natural ecologies while having fun. There is also a petting zoo and amusement park, making Hirakawa Zoological Park a popular destination for families with small children.

    I have to say this zoo is the best zoo I have ever visited. The animals look so happy, lively and comfortable in the zoo and visitors can look animals in the very close distance, particularly...

  • Flower Park Kagoshima
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    4.5
    92 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Ibusukishi Yamagawaokachogamizu 1611
    A botanical park opened in 1996 which makes use of the local warm weather to good effect. Visitors can enjoy flowers from around the world in a garden setting which harnesses the natural geography and surrounding pine forest. An abundance of events and classes are held at the park year round; the Flower Park Illumination, during which the park grounds are lit up at night from early December to early January, is particularly famous. A bus circles the park grounds and baby strollers and wheel chairs are also available to lend, making the park a facility which can be enjoyed by people of all ages. A 90-minute drive by car from within Kagoshima City or 20 minutes by bus from JR Yamakawa Station.

    It took 1 hour by train from Kagoshima, than a half hour bus ride to get there. The park is moderately priced and well maintained. The flowers are colorful and fragrant.

  • Io World Kagoshima City Aquarium
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    3.0
    3 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Honkoushinmachi 3-1
    This is the municipal aquarium built on the coast, on Kagoshima Bay facing Sakurajima Island. In the Kuroshio Large Tank which contains as much as 1,500 tons of water, you can watch the tuna and bonito migrating on the Kuroshio Current. Among them, the impact of the whale shark “Yu Yu” is a highlight. The seal exhibitions and dolphin pool are also popular. It is a 15-minute walk from Kagoshima Station.

    目の前をフェリーが往き来するので見ていて楽しいです。 子供が喜びそうなメニューがあります。 料理は全然美味しくないので注意してください。 もし観光で訪れたのなら他の飲食店に行くことをオススメします。

  • Satsuma Denshokan
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    4.5
    51 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Ibusukishi Higashikata 12131-4
    A history museum which presents the culture of the Satsuma (Kagoshima) region. The museum building was modeled after the Byodoin’s Phoenix Hall. The museum’s exhibits and exhibitions are designed around the concept of experiencing the history and culture of Satsuma with all five senses. Much of the museum’s collection consists of works of art from China and Satsuma handed down through the ages since ancient times in the region, including gorgeous ceramics decorated with gold. The museum also displays historic texts, medals, and calligraphic works dating to the late Edo period. Visitors can enjoy the tastes of Satsuma in the museum restaurant.

    Wasn't sure what to expect and the tickets were a bit dear (1500 yen per person), but I have no regret entering this outstanding museum. The building is neat, very attractive from within as it is...

  • Sakurajima Visitor Center
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    4.0
    191 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Sakurajimayokoyamachou 1722-29
    A small museum dedicated to volcanic Sakurajima. The museum is divided into several areas in which visitors can learn about the history and formation of Sakurajima, changes in the plant life of the pseudo-island, and the people who have lived along Kinko Bay. In the museum’s theater room, visitors can watch and listen to stunning videos of the volcano erupting. The museum shop sells books on Sakurajima as well as Sakurajima camellia oil.

    The visitor center opens at 9am. We went there earlier so we had to wait for a while. We signed for our visit and noticed that not many people go there everyday (or those tourists didn't sign...

  • JAXA Uchinoura Space Center
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kimotsukigunkimotsukichou Minamikata 1791-13
    This facility, located two hours from the Kagoshima interchange on the Kyushu Expressway via the Kasanohara interchange on the Osumi Jukan Road, is used primarily for scientific observation rocket and satellite launches as well as for tracking and data acquisition. Since 1962, over 400 rockets have been launched from here. The space center was the site of the launch of Japan’s first satellite and since that time has been used to launch close to 30 other satellites and probes. Visitors can enter the observation deck. The facility displays models of rockets and science satellites as well as scientific equipment. Visitors can also buy space related merchandise from vending machines.
  • Nagasakibana Parking Garden
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    3.5
    46 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Ibusukishi Yamagawaokachogamizu 1571-1
    A sightseeing destination established 50 years ago on Cape Nagasakibana, an area tied to a legend concerning the Palace of the Dragon King. Boasting a sweeping view of Kaimondake Volcano and the East China Sea, this garden, which recreates a tropical jungle, is planted with some 1,000 varieties of tropical plants. Parrot and rat shows are held on the garden’s spacious grounds, but be sure not to miss the flamingo shows resembling something out of a south seas resort. The garden also holds a variety of special events during Golden Week and other long holidays. People of all ages are sure to enjoy meeting the animals which are allowed to roam grounds closely resembling their natural habitat.

    If you want to see Nagasakibana, here is a good place. Also, this graden can give you chance to get touch with animals, for example, parrots. You can buy food for animals with cheap price

  • Kanoya Rose Garden
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kanoyashi Hamadachou 1250
    This rose garden, the largest in Japan, is located in a hilly area on the east side of Kirishimagaoka Park. Some 35 thousand wild roses, English roses, and other rose varieties are grown on the garden’s vast grounds. Roses named after royalty and nobles, Kanoya’s own original Princess Kanoya, and other roses bloom in vivid color; the best time to visit the garden is during the festivals held during the peak blooming periods in spring and autumn. Visitors can try flower cutting in a green house and appreciate roses from around the world in facilities like a rose chapel and garden stage. The garden’s restaurant, which serves a wide variety of dishes made with roses, is also popular.
  • Kagoshima Prefectural Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Shiroyamachou 1-1
    A history and natural history museum located a five-minute walk from the “Saigo Dozo-mae” stop on the City View bus line. The museum was originally established to keep records on the great Taisho period eruptions of Sakurajima. The main building consists of animal displays and a special exhibition space on the first floor, an exhibit on the natural beauty of Kagoshima within a 600-kilometer area stretching north and south on the second floor, and exhibits such as a 3D theater which introduce the industries harnessing the natural abundance of Kagoshima on the third floor. A planetarium as well as displays of a variety of dinosaur skeletons, ammonites, and other fossils can be found on the fourth floor of Houzan Hall, the museum’s annex.
  • Nagashima Art Museum
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    4.5
    43 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Kagoshimashi Take 3-42-18
    An art museum opened as part of Kagoshima City 100th anniversary celebrations in 1989. Visitors are greeted by Rodin’s “The Thinker” at the main entrance. The museum displays some 1,000 pieces, including paintings and sculptures, by international artists like Rodin and Chagall, as well as Satsuma ware. The museum also holds special exhibitions in a dedicated space one to two times a year. After checking out the museum, visitors can enjoy a casual light meal or cup of tea in the museum’s café, which boasts a sweeping view of Sakurajima and Kagoshima City.

    We visited this museum on our last day in Kagoshima. The most memorable museum was the Chiran Peace museum but this came a close second for different reasons. The museum was established 20 years ago...

  • Bansei Tokko Peace Museum
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    4.5
    24 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Kagoshima Pref. Minamisatsumashi Kasedatakahashi 1955-3
    A museum built on the site of the former Bansei Airfield, the last base used by the army for kamikaze fighters during the Pacific War. Opened in 1993, the museum’s numerous exhibits include Japan’s only extant Navy Type Zero reconnaissance seaplane (Aichi E13A), messages left by blood relatives of kamikaze fighters, and articles which belonged to kamikaze fighters as well as portraits. Through testimony provided by relatives and people involved as well as other videos, visitors can learn about the final moments of close to 200 kamikaze fighters, including pilots as young as 17. A memorial service is held in front of the museum’s monument each year in April.

    A peace memorial with a garden with a stone lantern dedicated to each of the 1036 Kamikaze (Tokyo) pilots who had to fly their planes on these suicide missions in the last months of WW2 from the air...

Kagoshima Main Areas

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Over 100 active volcanoes across Kagoshima make it one of the Japan's most exciting prefectures. The prefectural capital, Kagoshima city, looks out to one of the prefecture’s most spectacular volcanoes, Sakurajima, an island of its own that can be visited and seen close up or admired from afar, with the promise of breathtaking sunsets complete with frequent puffs of smoke and ash. Down the Satsuma Peninsula, the most southerly part of mainland Japan, waterfalls, sand onsen, and fascinating history await, while Kagoshima's abundance of satsuma imo (sweet potato) provide a wholesome snack as well as one of Japan's favourite drinksーshochu.

Kagoshima Photo Album

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