Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival

25 of the Best Things to Do in Fukuoka


2019.05.24

NAVITIME TRAVEL EDITOR

So, you’ve decided to head to Kyushu, and Fukuoka is at the top of your list for cities to visit—for good reason. From sweeping coastal views to bustling food stalls, the city is full of new experiences that will last a lifetime. In this article, we’ll go over the 25 best things to do in Fukuoka, and you can mix and match how you like to make for a great trip.

  • 01

    1 Fukuoka Airport

    Fukuoka

    Fukuoka

    Fukuoka Airport is right in the thick of the city, with only 2 subway stops and 5 minutes separating Hakata and the airport. This makes for some excellent scenery starting right from when you zoom into the city. It’s almost like flying straight into the middle downtown, and if you snag a nighttime flight, then the neon lights are sure to impress. Plus, you don’t even have to leave your seat.

    Fukuoka Airport

    Fukuoka Airport

  • 02

    2 Check out the Transportation Options

    Nishitetsu Bus

    Nishitetsu Bus

    The main methods of transportation in Fukuoka are by train—the JR Kyushu Lines, Fukuoka City Subway and Nishitetsu Subway —and also by the Nishitetsu Bus. You can ride all three with special IC cards, though, like the Sugoca, Hayakaken, and Nimoca cards. There are also day passes for the bus and train.
    The Fukuoka City Subway Day Pass is 620 yen, and the Nishitetsu Bus Day Pass is 900 yen for all rides within the city.
    The Fukuoka 1 Day Pass is 2,500 yen and includes the Nishitetsu Bus and Train Lines, which go a little further to surrounding cities like Kurume, Yanagawa, and Saga. So getting around in Fukuoka is a streamlined process.

    Read more
    Getting Around Fukuoka
    One of the best aspects of visiting Fukuoka is the ease of arriving into and moving around the city. …

    Fukuoka Cycling

    Fukuoka Cycling

  • 03

    3 Fukuoka Open Top Bus

    Open Top Bus

    Open Top Bus

    If this is your first time in Fukuoka, then consider taking an Open Top Bus to get a better view of your surroundings. The buses run around major sightseeing points inside Fukuoka City, like Hakata and Tenjin, as well as along seaside areas, so there’ll be plenty to see. Audio tours are available in English, Korean, and Chinese. Tickets can be purchased at the ticket counter on the first floor of the Fukuoka City Hall, on the Tenjin Central Park side.

    【URL】 https://fukuokaopentopbus.jp/en/

    Seaside area

    Seaside area

  • 04

    4 Kushida Shrine

    Kushida Shrine

    Kushida Shrine

    The area around Hakata Station is brimming with atmosphere, thanks to not only Kushida Shrine, which is said to date from the 8th century, but also from the Hakata Machiya Folk Museum, which is across from the shrine. They both offer old-world building styles and glimpses into the history and culture of Fukuoka. Then there’s the Kamikawabata Shopping Arcade, for an array of stores lined elbow-to-elbow in an authentically Japanese retail experience.

    Hakata Machiya Folk Museum

    Hakata Machiya Folk Museum

    Kamikawabata Shopping Arcade

    Kamikawabata Shopping Arcade

    Kushida-jinja Shrine
    rating

    4.0

    1614 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashihakataku Kamikawabatamachi 1-41
    phone
    0922912951
    opening-hour
    [Opening hours for worship] …
    Hakata Machiya Folk Museum
    rating

    4.0

    150 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashihakataku Reisenmachi 6-10
    phone
    0922817761
    opening-hour
    10:00-18:00 (Exhibition buil…
    上川端商店街
    place
    福岡県福岡市博多区
    no image
  • 05

    5 Hakata Ramen

    Ippudo Stand

    Ippudo Stand

    The tonkotsu ramen in Hakata is known across Japan for its rich broth and full flavor. And though chains serving Hakata ramen have opened all around the world, you owe it to yourself to get the goods straight from the source. Ippudo is among the favorite ramen chains in the area, and they’ve even expanded internationally. The original location, Ippudo Daimyo, still serves the Shiromaru Ramen, with a broth stewed for over 18 hours, that put the store on the map.

    Read more
    Fukuoka/Hakata Ramen
    Tonkotsu ramen is one of the most famous foods of Fukuoka city, …

    Hakata Ippudo Ramen

    Hakata Ippudo Ramen

    一風堂 天神西通りスタンド
    place
    福岡県福岡市中央区大名1-12-61
    phone
    092-707-3202
    no image
  • 06

    6 Motsunabe and Mizutaki

    Showraku

    Showraku

    Don’t just eat ramen; Fukuoka has plenty of other local specialties, like Motsunabe, which is hot pot made with animal intestines and offal. While it may sound iffy, give it a try at Showraku, and you may be surprised by the tender texture of wagyu intestine and flavorful vegetables. Mizutaki is another type of hot pot, but with chicken and vegetables. Hanamidori uses chickens they raise themselves for the dish, and you can finish it off with a nice custard pudding.

    Hanamidori

    Hanamidori

    もつ鍋 笑楽 本店
    place
    福岡県福岡市中央区西中洲11-4 笑楽ビル
    phone
    0927615706
    no image
    Hakata Hanamidori (Nakasu Main Restaurant)
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashihakataku Nakasu 5-4-24 Trisen Building 1-5F
    phone
    0922630322
    opening-hour
    17:00-24:00(L.O.22:30)[Sunda…
  • 07

    7 Walk from Ohori Park to Fukuoka Castle

    Ohori Park

    Ohori Park

    Ohori Park is almost directly in the center of Fukuoka, and the pond that comprises the majority of its area was originally part of the Fukuoka Castle moat. In the park there are waterside pathways, Japanese gardens, and small islands across stone bridges. Just across the way is Fukuoka Castle, where they now offer horseback riding! Or you can simply rent a bike and cruise around the park and castle grounds.

    Ohori Park

    Ohori Park

    Fukuoka Castle

    Fukuoka Castle

    Maizuru Park
    rating

    4.0

    339 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashichuouku Jounai
    phone
    0927812153
    opening-hour
    Free walking
    Ohori Park
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashichuouku Ohorikouen 1-2
    phone
    0927412004
    opening-hour
    Open 24 hours
  • 08

    8 Explore the Cafes

    Connect Coffee

    Connect Coffee

    The cafes along the way from Tenjin to Yakuin are no ordinary chain shops. They offer a range of specialty cafes serving carefully brewed coffee that will make the connoisseur proud, as well as an assortment of stylish vibes and cozy atmospheres. Connect Coffee is a chic space that offers drinks made by world-class latte artists, plus a few sweets and light snacks. They’re open till 10 p.m., so you can take your time sauntering over.
    「Connect Coffee」Instagram

    Read more
    Grab the Most Important Meal of the Day at Fukuoka’s Cafes
    When it comes to eating in Fukuoka, what comes to mind is Hakata ramen, the yatai scene,” …

    Connect Coffee

    Connect Coffee

    Connect Coffee

    Connect Coffee

    Connect Coffee
    rating

    4.5

    2 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Fukuoka-shi Chuo-ku Tenjin 5-6-13
    phone
    0927917213
  • 09

    9 Amaou Strawberry Sweets

    Himitsu no Hanazono

    Himitsu no Hanazono

    Amaou strawberries are Fukuoka’s signature fruit, and as such there are tons of shops selling amaou-infused desserts. Himitsu no Hanazono is set in the Daimyo neighborhood around Tenjin Station, and they offer up a mini staircase of 7 different types of amaou strawberry desserts, like amaou daifuku, amaou ice cream, and an amaou strawberry tart, to name a few. It’s a must for strawberry lovers.

    Himitsu no Hanazono

    Himitsu no Hanazono

    ヒミツノハナゾノ
    place
    福岡県福岡市中央区大名1-12-58 パサージュビル2F
    phone
    092-715-5576
    no image
  • 10

    10 Tenjin Underground Shopping Mall

    Tenjin Underground Shopping Mall

    Tenjin Underground Shopping Mall

    Designed based on the 19th-century European style, this underground shopping mall, or chikagai, holds over 150 shops and restaurants along its softly illuminated corridors. It’s connected to the main bus and train lines, so getting there isn’t a problem. Dragging yourself away from the 600 meter-long avenue of clothing stores, book shops and restaurants is the problem. This is great shopping for any weather.

    Tenjin Underground Shopping Mall

    Tenjin Underground Shopping Mall

    Tenjin Chikagai
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashichuouku Tenjin 2 underground 1-3
    phone
    0927111903
    opening-hour
    [Store] 10:00-20:00[Food and…
  • 11

    11 Acros Fukuoka

    Acros Fukuoka

    Acros Fukuoka

    Officially known as the Acros Fukuoka Prefectural International Hall, this massive complex houses the Fukuoka Symphony, a shopping mall, and even a few galleries. It’s a wonder of ecological architecture, with its verdant Step Garden being named one of the top 10 most beautiful sky gardens in the world. You can enter the garden terraces for free and enjoy a city oasis, complete with fountains and a rooftop observation deck with city views.

    Read more
    Acros Building -Fukuoka's Eco- Friendly Landmark.
    This is one of Fukuoka’s main contributions to the world’s ecological architecture.” …

    Acros Fukuoka

    Acros Fukuoka

    ACROSFukuoka
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashichuouku Tenjin 1-1-1
    phone
    092-751-8591
    opening-hour
    Each Depending on the facili…
  • 12

    12 Canal City Hakata

    Canal City Hakata

    Canal City Hakata

    Canal City is an expansive entertainment complex that houses hotels, a theater, a shopping mall, and a movie theater. As the name suggests, there’s also a canal running through the complex that has routine fountain shows with colorful lights, music, and water towers, as well as special events and projection mapping at night. Canal City is also home to Ramen Stadium, which has 8 shops representing all different styles of ramen from across Japan.

    Canal City Hakata

    Canal City Hakata

    Ramen Stadium

    Ramen Stadium

    Canal City Hakata
    rating

    4.0

    2031 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashihakataku Sumiyoshi 1-2
    phone
    0922822525
    opening-hour
    [Shop]10:00-21:00[Restaurant…
  • 13

    13 Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    If there’s one sightseeing spot you can’t miss, it’s Tenman-gū. This is a shrine dedicated to the god of scholarship, the deified spirit of Michizane Sugawara, and students and teachers alike come to pay their respects for luck on their exams. There are all kinds of shops lining the path to Tenman-gū, and the gardens around the shrine itself are tranquil and subdued, adding to the impact of this cultural landmark.

    Read more
    A Day Trip to Dazaifu
    The day trip to Dazaifu is a quick getaway from Fukuoka.” …

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenman-gū Shrine

    Dazaifu Tenmangu shrine
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Dazaifushi Saifu 4-7-1
    phone
    0929228225
    opening-hour
    6:00-19:00 ※ Changes depend…
  • 14

    14 Fukuoka Yafuoku! Dome

    Fukuoka Yafuoku! Dome

    Fukuoka Yafuoku! Dome

    Cheering for baseball in Japan is an active affair, with chants and dances that will keep you busy throughout the game. The retractable roof means that no matter what kind of weather it is outside, you’re going to get your fair share of baseball. There are also tours available that give you an inside look at the dugouts, locker rooms, and field, so you’ll get the complete baseball experience.

    Read more
    A Day Out at Fukuoka Yahuoku! Dome
    It’s a cliche at this point to say that the Japanese treat baseball like a religion” …

    Fukuoka Yafuoku! Dome

    Fukuoka Yafuoku! Dome

    Fukuoka Yafuoku! Dome

    Fukuoka Yafuoku! Dome

    FUKUOKA PayPay DOME (Fukuoka Dome)
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashichuouku Jigyouhama 2-2-2
    phone
    0928441189
    opening-hour
    Depending on the store
  • 15

    15 Great Hamburger

    Ikimatsu Burger

    Ikimatsu Burger

    Ikimatsu Burger is a hip little burger stand tucked away in a quiet, residential neighborhood. But don’t let the surroundings fool you, they serve up some serious flavor at reasonable prices, with each burger being charcoal-grilled on the spot. An assortment of toppings like egg and bacon, plus sides like fries and cheese rings make this the go-to place for locals. Stop by. Leave happy.

    Ikimatsu Burger

    Ikimatsu Burger

    いきまつバーガー
    place
    福岡県福岡市西区生の松原2-6-12
    phone
    0928348881
  • 16

    16 Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

    Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

    Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

    This expansive national park is almost 6 kilometers long and has all kinds of attractions for children, like splash fountains, oversized slides, and bouncing areas. There are also dog parks, cycling courses, and an Animal Forest that has capybaras and monkeys. Each season brings a new color to the flower gardens, and the sea views are lovely all year round. It’s the perfect place to let off some steam and take it easy for a change.

    Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

    Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

    Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

    Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

    Uminonakamichi Seaside Park
    rating

    4.5

    487 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashihigashiku Saitozaki 18-25
    phone
    0926031111
    opening-hour
    [Mar.-Oct.]9:30-17:30[Nov.-F…
  • 17

    17 Yatai (Food Stalls) Experience

    Yatai (Food Stalls)

    Yatai (Food Stalls)

    Fukuoka is known for its lively yatai, or food stands, and Nakasu is a great place to get the authentic experience. With rows of food stands serving up things like Hakata ramen, yakisoba, and cold beer, you can grab a bite to eat while enjoying your drink of choice in the bustling evening atmosphere. If yatai aren’t your thing, or you just want to switch it up, the city offers a selection of watering holes from low-key izakayas to stylish pubs.

    Read more
    Nostalgic Flavors and a Taste of the Future: The Fukuoka Yatai Experience
    The appeal of yatai is easy enough to explain: eat great food while soaking up the urban atmosphere,” …

    Yatai (Food Stalls)

    Yatai (Food Stalls)

    Yatai (Food Stalls)

    Yatai (Food Stalls)

    Watanabe-dori
    place
    Fukuoka Pref
  • 18

    18 River Cruise

    A leisurely cruise along the Nakagawa River that runs through Fukuoka lets you take in scenic views of the riverside yatai as well as Canal City and other major attractions. Leave in the evening to see the city come alive with lights from your seat on a waterbus. There are plenty of tours available, with boats leaving regularly from 4 p.m. to 10 p.m. and usually taking about half an hour.

    【URL】 http://river-cruise.jp/rivercruise

    Nakasu Cruise
    place
    Fukuoka Fukuoka-shi Chuo-ku Nishinakasu
    phone
    08052156555
  • 19

    19 Fukuoka Tower

    Fukuoka Tower

    Fukuoka Tower

    What sets Fukuoka Tower apart from the other city observation decks in Japan is the fact that it’s by the sea. So you can watch the sun set into the horizon and then relocate to catch the city lights, which makes for a romantic evening, indeed. Momochi Seaside Park is right in front of the tower, too, offering a walk along the beach for heartfelt time with that special someone.

    Fukuoka Tower

    Fukuoka Tower

    Fukuoka Tower
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashisawaraku Momochihama 2-3-26
    phone
    0928230234
    opening-hour
    9:30-22:00 (Admission Deadli…
  • 20

    20 Stay at a Trendy Hostel

    Stand By Me Hostel

    Stand By Me Hostel

    Stand By Me Hostel is centrally located and brimming with style. The dorms are of higher quality than usual, and the private rooms provide a modern touch that’s more reminiscent of a hotel. On the ground floor you’ll find a standing bar that’s perfect for making travel buddies and grabbing a quick bite. If you’re looking for an upbeat atmosphere without sacrificing style or breaking the bank, then check out Stand By Me.


    Read more
    Fukuoka’s Stand By Me Hostel
    Stand By Me has to be among the coolest places to stay in Fukuoka.” …

    Stand By Me Hostel

    Stand By Me Hostel

    HOSTEL STAND BY ME
    place
    福岡県福岡市中央区大手門1-3-22
    phone
    0927911974
    no image
  • 21

    21 Take a Day Trip

    Itoshima

    Itoshima

    At only 40 minutes from Hakata Station, Itoshima is a laid-back area perfect for a day in the sun. Palm Beach is an easy stretch of golden sand great for surfing, paddle boarding, or just taking it easy and soaking in some sunshine. You could also shoot for a ferry to Nokonoshima Island to experience the immense feeling of freedom brought by its sweeping views of picturesque natural scenery.


    Read more
    A Day Trip to Itoshima
    A forty minute run down the Kuko Line from Hakata Station,” …



    Read more
    Everybody's Gone Surfing: Surfing Itoshima
    Itoshima is where Fukuokans go to get out of town, hit the beach and catch a sunset off.” …

    Itoshima

    Itoshima

    Nokonoshima Island

    Nokonoshima Island

    Itoshima Peninsula
    place
    Fukuoka Prefecture Itoshima
    Nokonoshima Island
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashinishiku Noko island
  • 22

    22 Fukuoka Souvenirs

    Hakata Amaou Strawberry Baum Stick

    Hakata Amaou Strawberry Baum Stick

    You’ve got lots of tasty options for omiyage in Fukuoka. The mochi lovers will want to pick up Tsukushi Mochi, rice cakes covered in a sweet soybean powder. Next up is the adorable Yuki Usagi, or snow bunnies, made from marshmallow in the shape of a bunny, with a chewy gelatin center. The Chidori Manju are golden-brown confections filled with a sweet white bean paste, and Threefold Kuroda Bushi Senbei are rice crackers shaped like sake cups.

    Hakata Amaou Strawberry Baum Stick

    Hakata Amaou Strawberry Baum Stick

  • 23

    23 Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival

    Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival

    Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival

    The festival that Fukuoka is famous for, Hakata Gion Yamakasa, has been held for over 700 years to celebrate the god of Kushida Shrine. It’s an event that features stationary floats with ornate designs, as well as another float that’s paraded through the city at full running speed. The festival takes place every year from July 1st to 15th.
    Hakata Dontaku Port Festival is from May 3rd to 4th and features almost 30 performance stages in various points in the city, but the main attraction is the Dontaku parade, a lively affair that continues for well over a kilometer.

    Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival

    Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival

    Hakata Dontaku Port Festival

    Hakata Dontaku Port Festival

    Kushida-jinja Shrine
    rating

    4.0

    1614 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashihakataku Kamikawabatamachi 1-41
    phone
    0922912951
    opening-hour
    [Opening hours for worship] …
  • 24

    24 Hakata and its Historic Shrines

    Jotenji

    Jotenji

    Being one of the oldest cities in Japan, and the more traditional district of Fukuoka, it makes sense that Hakata is home to the most historic temples in the city. Although there are not as many of them as in other major cities, there are three temples you don’t want to miss. Shofukuji is a 12th century temple and the oldest zen temple in Japan. There is not much activity going on here and its buildings cannot be entered, but simply walking through its beautiful gardens is a real pleasure. Tochoji Temple is a much smaller temple yet it houses a magnificent wooden Buddha and a pitch-black labyrinth underneath it. The smallest of the three temples is Jotenji. This zen temple dates back to the 13th century and although access to it is limited, visitors can still enjoy the serenity of its zen gardens.

    Jotenji Temple
    rating

    4.0

    121 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Fukuoka-shi Hakata-ku Hakata Ekimae 1-29-9
    phone
    0924313570
  • 25

    25 Learn about Hakata traditions and culture

    Hakata Machiya Folk Museum

    Hakata Machiya Folk Museum

    If you want to learn more about the rich history of the Hakata District, the Hakata Machiya Folk Museum does a good job of showcasing real-life examples of what life was like in the past. Aside from looking at historic timelines around the exhibition hall, visitors can have a firsthand look at old artisan traditions and listen to Hakata dialect on antique wall phones from 1899, all the while walking through a reproduced Hakata home (machiya). Workshops and exhibitions are held twice daily, between 10am to 12pm and 2pm to 4pm. Adults pay a 200 yen fee, while children up to junior high school age can enter for free.

    Hakata Machiya Folk Museum
    rating

    4.0

    150 Reviews
    place
    Fukuoka Pref. Fukuokashihakataku Reisenmachi 6-10
    phone
    0922817761
    opening-hour
    10:00-18:00 (Exhibition buil…

Click here for a summary article including this article