On the western coast of Japan’s main island, Fukui Prefecture hugs the sea and provides some of Japan’s most beautiful natural sights. There are many things to see and do for people interested in relaxing as well as for those interested in the area’s rich history.
The Tojinbo Cliffs are one of the prefecture’s main attractions. Stretching a kilometer along the coast of Sakai City, these cliffs offer visitors the opportunity to take a walk along the ocean and look down some 30 meters below at the waves crashing against the rocks. Since Fukui Prefecture is a coastal area, there’s no shortage of water sports and cruise opportunities available. There are also several famous temples located in beautiful forests that visitors who enjoy nature hikes should put on their to do list.
Fukui City is known for being one of the earliest homes of the Soto school of Zen Buddhism in Japan. Dogen, a famous Buddhist priest, established Eiheiji Temple in the 13th century and it still stands today on the outskirts of Fukui City. Visitors can visit the temple to catch a glimpse of daily life in the temple and even participate in temple stays for up to three days. Visitors should be sure to visit the nearby Eiboukan to learn more about the area and enjoy their excellent art installation.
The area is also home to the Ichojodani Asakura Family Historic Ruins. This village was originally built in the 15th century, but was burned to the ground just 103 years later, when the family was defeated in battle by a rival clan. Restoration of the ruins began in the 1960s and the grounds are now open to tourists interested in learning more about feudal Japan.
Fukui Prefecture is also known for its unique regional cuisine. From November to March, Echizen crabs are a popular dish that are often enjoyed raw or served in soups. When visiting the western part of the prefecture, travelers must try the decadent Wakasaji gozen lunch, which consists of salmon, tuna, and sea bream sashimi with shrimp and salmon roe on top of a bowl of rice. For a quick lunch out, visitors should try the local favorite, sauce katsudon – a savory, deep-fried pork cutlet covered with Worcestershire sauce before being served over rice.
In the northern part of the prefecture, Awara’s onsen is the ideal destination for those looking to take a load off. This onsen wasn’t discovered until the late 19th century, but it quickly became a popular destination for onsen enthusiasts. For those who enjoy festivals, Fukui Prefecture is perfect. Regardless of the season, there are festivals that take place almost every month in the region. There are also fireworks displays almost every weekend throughout the summer.
NAVITIME TRAVEL EDITOR