Located in the northern part of Kyushu Island, Fukuoka is the capital, the largest city in Kyushu Island and one of Japan’s six largest cities. As one of the famous tourist destinations, Fukuoka will be an attractive tourist destination for you. Visiting Fukuoka, you not only admire the picturesque landscapes, diverse culture, participate in colorful festivals, but also have the opportunity to enjoy the fascinating and signature cuisine of Fukuoka such as Yatai street food. So, is Fukuoka worth visiting? Let’s discover one of the most livable cities in Japan through our Fukuoka travel blog (Fukuoka blog) with the fullest Fukuoka travel guide (Fukuoka city guide, Fukuoka visitor guide) for a wonderful trip to Fukuoka on a budget for the first time from how to get there, best time to visit, and top things to do … to find out the answer!
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In addition to being the administrative and economic center of Kyushu Island, Fukuoka City has its own unique local culture and cuisine with a long history of development. And becoming a bustling commercial center, where origins of fashion and culture trends spread throughout Japan.
Fukuoka is considered an easy-to-live city because in the city, there are extremely convenient facilities such as from Hakata in the city center, going to Fukuoka airport by subway is only about 15 minutes. It takes 15 minutes to walk from JR Hakata Station to meet the Nakasu bustling street located between the Hakatagawa and Nakagawa rivers. Every evening, along the riverbank, there are many shops, eateries opening. It can be said that the riverfront scenery around the bustling urban area is a unique feature of Hakata.
Fukuoka blog: When is the best time to visit?
Fukuoka is located in the northern part of Kyushu Island, has a climate divided into 4 seasons, suitable for traveling all year round. In which summer is the best time to visit Fukuoka. The summer months in Fukuoka are sunny, and July is characterized by the unique Hakata Gion Yamakasa festival with Yamakasa performances that were carefully decorated with famous character models in Japan. Coming to Fukuoka at this time, you will enjoy the cool beaches, and admire the wonderful fireworks displays in the flower festival held every year.
Spring and autumn are also two beautiful times to travel to Fukuoka. These are two good times to see the beauty of nature, with spring from March to May when cherry blossoms full bloom. And Fukuoka has a warmer weather after cold winter days. Visitors coming here will live in the atmosphere of the wonderful cherry blossom festival.
From September to November are autumn days in Fukuoka, with cool weather after hot summer days. Autumn brings gentle and relaxing moments for tourists, having the best conditions to enjoy the vacation. Admiring the yellow and red autumn leaves is also one of the top travel experiences in Fukuoka in the fall. In addition, visitors also have the opportunity to participate in the Tsukimi festival to watch the full moon, and get a new travel experience.
Fukuoka travel blog: How to get to Fukuoka?
A convenient point of Fukuoka is the airport located right in the city, only 2 subway stations from Hakata Station (the central station of Fukuoka), so it only takes 15-20 minutes to get from the airport to the city center. So the most convenient way to travel to Fukuoka is by plane. Japanese domestic low cost airlines have direct flights from other cities to Fukuoka and extremely reasonable prices (I used to fly from Fukuoka to Tokyo for only 4.000 yen/way when fly with Flypeach airline).
Fukuoka city guide: Getting around Fukuoka
The transportation system in Fukuoka is quite developed, so there are many means of transportation in Fukuoka for you to choose from, but there are 3 main means of transport that are most used are subway, bus, taxi. To traveling in Fukuoka on a budget, we recommend you take the subway or bus (especially for long distance trips that will save a lot of money), and taxis are only suitable for short routes in the city, because taxi fares are very high.
This subway has a stop at Hakata station near Fukuoka airport. You can use the subway to visit Nakasu or Tenjin and the western area of Fukuoka Prefecture.
The subway can take you to most tourist spots in Fukuoka. To saving the most money when you traveling by subway, you should buy a JR Pass. Also, remember to get yourself a Fukuoka tourist map and a subway map to know about train stops to avoid get lost. We had a very detailed article about JR Pass here.
If you are in the Tenjin area and want to go to the southern part of Fukuoka Prefecture, you can use the Nishitetsu train. Its advantages are continuous running, multiple trips, less traffic congestion, fast travel time. Nishitetsu trains stop at Yanagawa no kawakudari or Dazaifu Tenmangu station.
Bus is a means of transport with very cheap prices, very suitable for visitors who want to save more costs. Japanese buses are also quite comfortable. There are 2 types of buses: Intercity bus (long-distance bus) and bus running in the city. Intercity buses often run at night and are designed to provide more legroom to help passengers more comfortable.
Nishitetsu bus runs throughout the city, taking you to the Hakata or Tenjin neighborhoods, and also the big shopping mall in the city – Outlet Mall or “Yahuoku! Dome” where sports competitions are often held or music performances, … are very convenient. You can get down to any location, which is relatively cheaper than other means of transportation. Identification characteristics: electronic signs are mounted in the front, inside the bus with price of 100 yen/trip.
Buses travel between stations in Hakata and Tenjin, so it’s convenient for you to visit these 2 towns, the bus ticket is 100 yen. On weekends, there will be Green Loop tourist bus (Green Fukuoka City Loop Bus) running between Hakata Station and the most attractive tourist spots in Fukuoka. The fare for this bus is 250 yen/trip or 700 yen for the whole day.
JR Line allows you to travel around Fukuoka City and other cities in Kyushu or Mojiko port in Kitakyushu City. This means of transport helps you can move to areas where the Nishitetsu train or Nishitetsu bus cannot reach. Therefore, to reach all areas of Kyushu province, the JR route is the most convenient.
This type of vehicle is considered to be the most environmentally friendly vehicle. Although its speed is not as fast as other vehicles, it will give you the slowest experience around the city, sightseeing the streets, alleys and to Fukuoka tourist destinations where the vehicles are bigger can’t move in.
Taxi is always a convenient means of transportation to help tourists save the most time but the cost is quite expensive. If you go with a group, the taxi is a suitable choice because you can share taxi fare together and save a lot of time to enjoy more beautiful scenery of Japan. Taxi fares in Fukuoka you can refer to: Taxi Start (Normal Tariff): 590 yen / Taxi 1km (Normal Tariff): 250 yen / Taxi 1hour Waiting (Normal Tariff): 2.700 yen.
Fukuoka visitor guide: Where to stay?
Hotel Hokke Club Fukuoka: As one of the cheap, quality hotels in Fukuoka you should choose. With a convenient location, close to the beautiful attractions in Fukuoka such as: Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine, Tennen Onsen Yaojinoyu … help you save time when traveling. A top rated 3-star hotel with room rates from $45/night (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Guest House Kaine: This is a top rated guesthouse located in the heart of Fukuoka, only 6 minutes walk from Nakasu-Kawabata Station. You will be experienced stay in a traditional Japanese house with more than 70 years old. This accommodation is an ideal place for travelers who want to saving costs when coming to Fukuoka. A top rated guesthouse with room rates from $19/night (Check rates and reviews on Booking.com).
Tonagi Hostel & Café: This hostel is located in the Hakata Ward area – a good choice for travelers who want to enjoy hot springs (onsen), relaxation and convenient public transport. Tonagi Hostel & Café is located 4 km from Fukuoka Airport, near Tocho-ji Temple and the lively port of Hakata. A 2-star hostel with room rates from $13/night (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Bed Stock: Newly opened since 2017, but Bed Stock received many positive reviews from tourists. This top rated hostel is located near the city center, subway stations, suitable for sightseeing and traveling. A 2-star hostel with room rates from $23/night (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Harborside Guest House Minato: As a long-time guesthouse in Fukuoka, another traditional accommodation you can find in Fukuoka. This is a top place to stay in Fukuoka, fully equipped for visitors, including free wifi, laundry service, … Elegant, simple design rooms, offering an ideal relaxing space. A top rated hostel with room rates from $23/night (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Below we recommend more best cheap, budget, mid-range and upscale hotels from $22/night with good ratings and reviews you can refer to.
JR Kyushu Hotel Blossom Hakata Chuo (Address: 2 Chome-2-11 Hakata Ekimae, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, 812-0011, Japan / Phone: +81 92-477-8739), a top rated 4-star hotel with room rates from $117/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Hotel WBF Fukuoka Tenjin Minami (Address: 3 Chome-23-32 Haruyoshi, Chuo Ward, Fukuoka, 810-0003, Japan / Phone: +81 92-737-4123), a top rated 3-star hotel with room rates from $49/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Solaria Nishitetsu Hotel Fukuoka (Address: 2 Chome-2-43 Tenjin, Chuo Ward, Fukuoka, 810-0001, Japan / Phone: +81 92-752-5555), a top rated 4-star hotel with room rates from $123/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Hakata Tokyu REI Hotel (Address: 1 Chome-2-23 Hakata Ekimae, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, 812-0011, Japan / Phone: +81 92-451-0109), a top rated 3-star hotel with room rates from $101/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
The Royal Park Hotel Fukuoka (Address: 2 Chome-14-15 Hakata Ekimae, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, 812-0011, Japan / Phone: +81 92-414-1111), a top rated 4-star hotel with room rates from $134/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Dormy Inn Hakata Gion (Address: 1-12 Reisenmachi, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, 812-0039, Japan / Phone: +81 92-271-5489), a top rated 3-star hotel with room rates from $56/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Daiwa Roynet Hotel Hakata Gion (Address: 1-24 Gionmachi, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, 812-0038, Japan / Phone: +81 92-281-3600), a top rated 3-star hotel with room rates from $58/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Hotel Okura Fukuoka (Address: 3-2 Shimokawabatamachi, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, 812-0027, Japan / Phone: +81 92-262-1111), a top rated 5-star hotel with room rates from $125/night. (Check rates and reviews on Agoda.com or Booking.com).
Fukuoka travel blog: Best places to visit and top things to do
Dazaifu Tenmangu Shrine
Is one of the other historical sites of Dazaifu. This famous shrine is dedicated to Sugawara no Michizane, a scholar who is worshiped as a god of knowledge and erudition. So every year up to 7.000.000 people visit the temple. Because it is a shrine of knowledge, this place that attracts many candidates to pray on every exam season.
In January, there is a “Usokae–shinji” ritual – changing unintentional lies (thinking it was true, not knowing that he was lying) in the previous year with the sincerity under the gods; “Onisube–shinji” – is a ritual to avoid fire, wishing happiness, avoid disaster; In September there is Fudezukasai festival – the thanksgiving ceremony for the used up palm tree brushes and praying to develop skills in calligraphy before “Fudezuka” – the stele of the used up palm tree brushes.
You can also visit the Dazaifu Tenmangu Museum, which houses some of the shrine’s treasures and the Kanko Historical Museum, which displays the main events of Michizane’s life.
Around February and March every year, plum flowers will bloom, the whole temple of Dazaifu Tenmangu is covered with a light pink color and it is also a sign that spring has returned to Japan.
Address: 4 Chome-7-１ Saifu, Dazaifu, Fukuoka 818-0117, Japan
Phone: +81 92-922-8225
Hours: 6AM – 7PM
Considered as one of the famous tourist places in Fukuoka, any visitor who traveling to Fukuoka also wants to visit this shrine. This sacred shrine worships the god of the sea, so local people and sailors often go to Sumiyoshi-jinja Shrine to pray for good rain, good wind and good luck for the family. Sumiyoshi-jinja Shrine is one of the oldest structures on Kyushu Island. Inside also displays some important national treasures such as ancient swords, ancient manuscripts, copper axes, etc.
Address: 3 Chome-1-51 Sumiyoshi, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka, 812-0018, Japan
Phone: +81 92-291-2670
As the only coastal tower in Japan where Fukuoka city can be seen right in front of you. Fukuoka Tower has a total height of 234m, proud the highest seaside tower in Japan.
Fukuoka Tower was built in 1989 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of Fukuoka city government. The modern building has a balanced triangle shape, and is stuck with 8.000 pieces of mirror, so it is also known as the “Mirror Sail”. From the observation room you can see the panoramic view of Fukuoka city and the evening is a romantic scene.
In addition, at Fukuoka Tower, those who have birthdays on that day will receive special offers, such as free sightseeing, gifts. This birthday offer will be applied on the birthday itself and before or after 3 days and needs something to prove, such as a passport, ID.
At the 116m-high observation room, there is “Koibito no Seichi” (Lover’s Sanctuary), first certified in Fukuoka and designed in a heart-shaped object. At this place, many couples come to swear with the mountains and seas as witnesses, they lock the “Aikagi” heart shaped hooks into the of the barrier of oath, wishing for a lasting attachment.
Address: 2 Chome-3-26 Momochihama, Sawara Ward, Fukuoka, 814-0001, Japan
Height: 234 m
Opened: March 17, 1989
Hours: 9:30AM–10PM (Last admission at 9：30PM)
Admission: Adult (Aged 16 and over): 800yen