12 Scenic Attractions You Can’t Miss
Nothing says “scenic” quite like the sights of Fukuoka. From cherry blossoms and autumn leaves to ancient temples and hot springs, the prefecture evokes Japan’s unique beauty through its natural landscapes and cultural sights. Get to know the best of this quaint neighborhood by heading to these must-see tourist spots on your next visit!
Breathtaking Sightseeing Spots in Fukuoka for Nature Lovers
1. Uminonakamichi Coastal Park
Extending over approximately 300 hectares, Uminonakamichi Coastal Park (Uminonakamichi Kaihin Koen) is an amusement center, a campground and a water park united in a flamboyant public garden. Its stunning seasonal flowers attract travelers with varied interests.
The park is teeming with nemophiles (spring), roses (early summer and fall), and cosmos (autumn), providing an excellent flower-viewing experience year-round. In April, its bike path is lined with cherry blossom trees for cyclists.
2. Yanagawa River
Yanagawa City flourished as a fortified city under the Tachibana clan. Made up of 470 kilometers of canals, it earned its name “Water Tower” in 1588 and “Venice of Kyushu” in modern times.
Its canals, while they were originally irrigation canals, are now used for pleasure cruises. Boatmen in traditional dress drive these vehicles, also known as donkobune or the Donko boats, through the rivers lined with cherry blossoms and irises.
Also famous as the birthplace of Kitahara Hakushu, Yanagawa City holds the Hakushu Water Festival and Parade every November. The three-day festival commemorates the famous tanka poet. During the celebration, festival-goers have poetry readings, launch fireworks, and slide down the Yanagawa River.
3. Fukutsu Sea Mirror
If you have heard of Fukutsu Citythen you have probably heard of the famous Fukutsu Sea Mirror. As the name suggests, this tourist spot in Fukuoka features a glass beach, making it an idyllic shooting spot. Understanding Fukuma Beach, Miyajihama Beachand Tsuyazaki Beachthe coast stretches for about three kilometers, with its shallow waters reflecting the sunset sky.
Be sure to visit the Fukutsu Sea Mirror at low tide, when the waters turn into a mirror. Visitors can refer to official forecasts here.
4. Mount Sarakura
Without a doubt, Fukuoka harbors a myriad of Japanese treasures, including Mount Sarakura. Known for its “10 billion dollar nightscape”, the 622 meter high mountain Kitakyushu Quasi-National Park is the highest mountain in Kyushu and has one of the most popular observation decks in the country.
Travelers can take the cable car and ropeway to ferry from Yahata to the summit. If you’re feeling adventurous, you can opt for a 1.5-hour hike instead.
At the top, you will witness a panoramic view of City of Kitakyushu. Dine at the restaurant on the observation deck to enjoy a 200° view while feasting.
5. Nokonoshima Island Park
Nokonoshima Island Park offers a magnificent sea of flowers through the seasons. In addition to cherry blossoms and rapeseed (late February to mid-April), poppies (early March to early May), Livingstone’s daisies (late March to early May) and cosmos (early October to early November), the natural park grows local produce which you can buy at their little market.
In addition to their flora, the park on Nokonoshima Island also has stalls that sell gifts and tokens, as well as light snacks. Try their famous Noko Burger in the area.
6. Kawachi Wisteria Garden
You can’t miss the Kawachi Wisteria Garden, one of the most important tourist spots in Fukuoka. Nestled in a private area of Kitakyushu City, the garden offers visitors an enchanting canopy of wisteria. It has 22 varieties of flowering plants, which bloom from late April to early May.
In the Kawachi Wisteria Garden, you can walk through its 110 and 80 meter long tunnels covered in bright white and purple flowers. In mid-November, the garden transforms into a sepia-toned paradise, with red and orange maple leaves covering its grounds.
Must-See Tourist Attractions in Fukuoka for Heritage Enthusiasts
7. Akizuki Castle Ruins
Nostalgic tourist spot in Fukuoka, the Akizuki Castle was built in 1203 and housed successive feudal lords. Although most of the ancient walled city was destroyed battle after battle, a few elements have been preserved, giving visitors a glimpse of how the samurai class lived and conducted political affairs.
The Nagayamon, or the rear gate of the main palace, is the only structure remaining in its original place. The kuromonwhich was once the main gate to the castle, is also still alive, but was moved from its original position in the late 1800s.
Visitors will enjoy the nature surrounding Akizuki Castle in spring and autumn. In November, autumn leaves line the black gate of Taruyu Shrine with orange and red hues.
Meanwhile, in the spring, cherry trees bloom and adorn Sugi no Baba Street, the city’s main street. The boulevard also features a 500-meter-long tunnel lined with cherry blossoms that leads to the ruins of Akizuki Castle.
8. Miyajidake Shrine
The Miyajidake Shrine houses three valuables: the Shimenawa (rope talisman), copper bell and taiko drum – each among the largest in Japan. Dedicated to the former Empress Jingu, Miyajidake is a sacred place that millions of devotees visit each year to pray for good fortune.
Due to its beautiful location, Miyajidake is also a notable place in Fukuoka, especially in late February and late October. During these months, the sun sets perfectly between the torii gates of the shrine, forming a captivating golden view from the path to the sea.
9. Ukiha Inari Shrine
Oasis of solemnity, the Ukiha Inari Shrine is a sanctuary where devotees pray for good business, bountiful harvests, good health and abundant life. From the entrance, a row of 91 strikingly red torii leads its guests to the sanctuary, itself perched on a mountain. In the spring, cherry blossoms also bloom in the area.
At the top of the shrine, you’ll find sweeping views of the lush green grounds of Ukiha, as well as the mountainous town of Chikugo. Ukiha City is also known as the “Fruit Kingdom”, as it produces grapes, persimmons, nashi pears and other seasonal fruits.
10. Maizuru Park (Fukuoka Castle Ruins)
Nagamasa Kuroda, the former lord of Chikuzen, built the Fukuoka Castle in the 1600s. In 1957, the Japanese government declared this Fukuoka tourist spot a historic site. Visitors can still access the remains of the castle, where they can marvel at the cityscape of Fukuoka in the observatory.
Today you will find Fukuoka Castle in the middle Maizuru Park, which now houses modern facilities and walking trails. It also has lawn areas, where customers like to hang out Hanami celebrations under the cherry and plum blossoms.
Perfect tourist spots in Fukuoka
11. Retro Mojiko
The historical appeal of Fukuoka Retro Mojiko remains unprecedented. Built as a port in 1889, the area is a chamber of many old Western-style buildings. It is fascinating to see how these establishments merge with newer structures including cafes, libraries and museums. You’ll find an eclectic mix of architectural styles across the harbour.
Besides its streetscape, Mojiko Retro is also known for its yaki curry – a local specialty dish consisting of baked rice and curry topped with cheese and eggs.
12. Itoshima Photo Spots
It goes without saying that Fukuoka is dotted with photogenic tourist attractions. In the prefecture, Itoshima probably has the most curated spots for vacationing photographers. With its sunny beaches and dramatic mountains, the once sleepy seaside town is attracting a growing number of creatives to its community.
A notable site in Itoshima is Sakurai Futamigaura, where the sun sets between two large rocks (also called “couples of rocks”). Another famous tourist site is on the east coast of Itoshima: the Palm tree swing, a giant swing that faces a beautiful view of the beach. Itoshima is also home to tropical-themed cafes and restaurants, such as Lino Cafe, which faces the ocean.
Plan your trip to Fukuoka!
We hope these tourist spots in Fukuoka inspire you to explore this scenic travel destination. If you want to see more of Fukuoka, plan your trips through the Fukuoka Prefecture official website and Facebook page.
Presented by Fukuoka Prefectural Tourism Association.