Fukuoka (福岡) is the biggest city in Kyushu and where most international flights to this prefecture will arrive. Due to it’s closeness to the Asian mainland, it has been an important harbour town for centuries. Expect your experience here to be a little different fro other big Japanese cities, with strong Korean and Chinese influences.

Budget travel tips

  • Head to the food stalls and markets early to avoid disappointment!
  • Free Wifi is available in many shops and other areas with Fukuoka City Wifi.
  • Pick up a Fukuoka Tourist City Pass if you plan to visit lots of places and/or Daizaifu. The subway pass is also a good option.

Things to do

Food Stalls (屋台)

Fukuoka is famous for it’s ‘Yatai’, and there are over 150 in the city. The best place to sit down around one of these small food stalls is to head to the southern end of Nakasu Island, but you will see them everywhere. All sorts of cheap food is available, such as Hakata Ramen.

fukuoka_canal_cityCanal City Hakata (キャナルシティ)

Rather cheesy shopping center, but a fun place to hang out, do a bit of bargain shopping and have a drink. A 5 minute walk directly west of Hakata station.

Yanagibashi_MarketYanagibashi Market (柳橋連合市場)

Huge market with all kinds of seafood, vegetables, fruits and tempura. Come early in the morning for the best choice, including the local specialty, mentaiko (spicy cod roe). Great for a stroll, you will encounter some strange things!

Kawabata_marketHakata Kawabata Shopping Arcade

More shopping craziness, with 100 yen stores, traditional sweet shops and more. Just north of Canal City, along the river.

Kushida_ShrineKushida Shrine )FREE)

Also just north of Canal City is this popular shrine.  Visitors can see a decorated float of Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival and can also taste the youth preserving spring water!

How to get there

With the Japan Rail Pass

Take the Shinkansen all the way to Hakata station, which is in Fukuoka. You may need to change along the way at Shin-Osaka if traveling from Kanto or northern Japan.

Without the Japan Rail Pass

Flights from the other major cities, such as Tokyo or Osaka, are super cheap, so check the flight prices. The airport is a short subway ride from Hakata station.

Nishitetsu has a night bus from Tokyo (Shinjuku Keio Highway Bus Terminal) to/from Fukuoka, but flying is usually much cheaper, plus a lot faster.


Hostels and cheap hotels

Fukuoka Hana Hostel

Super friendly staff and atmosphere with super cheap rooms. Not much wrong here!  Check prices at Booking.com.

International Hostel Khaosan Fukuoka

The tried and tested Khaosan chain is never a bad place to stay, with friendly service and a lounge and kitchen to hang out in and meet fellow travelers.  Check prices at Booking.com.

More at Booking.com

Free Volunteer Guides

Fukuoka SGG Club


Yokanabi – Official tourism site

Published by Matthew Baxter

Japan travel writer and onsen addict