Travel From Fukuoka

It is easy to travel from Fukuoka to many other destinations. Here is information on how to get to a few of the most popular, and where to stay when you get there.

We recommend the following travel agents:

  • HIS Parco: On the 7th floor of the Parco department store near GenkiJACS. Some staff speak English. Phone 092-736-8661

Travel Tips

Here are some cheap ways to get around Japan:

Discount Airlines

There are 3 main discount airlines offering flights from Fukuoka:

  • Peach Airlines: Flies from Fukuoka to Osaka. Flights from 3,500 yen normally, as cheap as 1,500 yen on special offer.
  • Jetstar Japan: Flies from Fukuoka to Osaka and Tokyo (Narita). Flights from 5,000 yen normally, as cheap as 2,000 yen on special offer.
  • Air Asia: Flies from Fukuoka to Tokyo (Narita). Flights from 5,000 yen normally, as cheap as 2,000 yen on special offer.

These airlines are a great way to see other parts of Japan very cheaply. There are generally no hidden fees for domestic tickets, and flights with these airlines are usually far cheaper than either the train or the bus, so we recommend taking a trip to Tokyo while you study at Genki Japanese School!

Willer Express Buses/Star Express Buses

Willer Express Buses home page

Willer Express Buses and Star Express Buses are for the traveler that is willing to spend more time in order to travel in a more cost-efficient manner. The buses will take you all over Japan for a cheap price, but, for example, it would take around 13 hours to get to Kyoto from Fukuoka. The seats are comfortable enough for sleeping and you even get a free blanket to use! These express buses won’t let you bring bicycles on, though, so if you’re planning on bicycling once you hit your destination, you’re going to have to rent it on the spot.

Skymark Airlines

Skymark Airlines home page

Skymark Airlines offer cheap flights from certain large Japanese cities. For example, a flight with Skymark from Fukuoka Airport to Haneda Airport (Tokyo) would cost you around $171 (¥14,200), while a normal airline would run you around ¥36,000. The deadline to pay is either 7:30 p.m. or 10 p.m. on the day before departure (depending on whether you reserve at the reservation center or online). No food/snacks are offered on the flight. The airports they fly from are Haneda (Tokyo), Asahikawa, Sapporo, Ibaraki, Kobe, Kitakyushu, Fukuoka, Kumamoto, Kagoshima, Amami, and Naha.

Japan RailPass

Japan RailPass home page

The Japan RailPass is offered by the JR railway company. You can only get a Japan RailPass if you are in Japan under a “Temporary Visitor” status and the pass must be purchased before you come to Japan (the pass cannot be purchased while you are in Japan). Prices vary depending on whether you want “green” seats or ordinary seats, whether you are an adult or a child, and whether you want a 7-day, 14-day, or 21-day pass. For example, an adult wanting an “ordinary” seat would pay ¥28,300 for a 7-day pass. With the RailPass, you are allowed to ride any JR Shinkansen bullet train in Japan (except for the Nozomi line on the Tokaido and Sanyo Shinkansen lines), local JR bus lines, and the JR Miyajima ferry (JR ferry from Hakata port to Pusan, Korea is not included). Visit the Japan RailPass website to find out where you can buy your Exchange Order (you take the Exchange Order to Japan with you and turn it in in order to receive your RailPass).

Kyushu RailPass

JR Kyushu RailPass home page

The Kyushu RailPass gives you unlimited rides on the Kyushu Shinkansen’s Tsubame line and the Sonic (a limited express train). You can either get a Northern Kyushu Area Pass (only 3-day pass available) or an All Kyushu Area Pass (3-day and 5-day passes available). Kids 6-11 years of age get half price ticket, while children under 6 can ride completely free. The rules of purchasing and eligibility are the same as the Japan RailPass. The Northern Kyushu Area Pass includes many large and interesting cities on Kyushu (Fukuoka, Nagasaki, Kokura, Kurume, Beppu, Kumamoto, Mt. Aso, Oita, etc.) so it’s a great investment for only ¥7000.

Seishun 18 Kippu

Seishun 18 Kippu information on Wikitravel website
Seishun 18 Kippu information on Japan Guide website

The Seishun 18 Kippu(青春18きっぷ), offered by the JR railway company, is one of the cheapest ways to travel around Japan, with 5 days of unlimited travel around Japan costing only ¥11,500. It can only be purchased from a JR ticket window once you are in Japan and is only available during three parts of the year- Spring Break (March 1st-April 10th, on sale February 20th-March 31st), Summer Break (July 20th-September 10th, on sale July 1st-August 31st), and Winter Break (December 10th-January 20th, on sale December 1st-January 10th). You can ride any non-express JR train in all of Japan (cannot ride any Shinkansen lines, super express, limited express, express, or sleeper JR trains). Once your ticket was been stamped, you have until the same day midnight to ride as many times as you want. After your ticket has been stamped 5 times, it becomes invalid.

 

Kumamoto City

Kumamoto is the capital city of Kumamoto Prefecture, and boasts some great sightseeing places such as Kumamoto Castle, considered one of the three great castles of Japan. It is also a great place to be if you would like to travel to other places in central Kyushu, such as Mt. Aso and Suizen-ji Joju-en (a famous Japanese garden). Kumamoto City is also famous for basashi (raw horse meat) and it is considered a delicacy.

How To Get There

(Short distance away- taking a plane is not recommended)

  • Shinkansen (Ltd. Exp. Ariake 13), 74 minutes, @ ¥3,740
  • Shinkansen (Ltd. Exp. Relay Tsubame 53), 131 minutes, @ ¥2070
  • ALL KYUSHU AREA RAIL PASS- 3 day (¥13,000) or 5 day (¥16,000)
    JR Kyushu RailPass website
  • From Hakata Station- take the Super Express (Highway Bus) for ¥2000 (operated by Nishitetsu)

Where To Stay

Dyeing and Hostel Nakashimaya is located in the center of the city, ¥2500 a night with a futon (¥2000 if you bring your own bedding), there's AC/internet/pool tables/hot showers/lounge area, etc.
Dyeing and Hostel Nakashimaya website

 

Kyoto

Kyoto, Japan’s capital from 794 A.D. - 1868 is a must-see destination for all visitors. It is especially known as the center of traditional Japan with many historical sights, such as thousands of Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines, as well as some of Japans most beautiful gardens and palaces.

How To Get There

Willer Express Buses: with an online student discount and taking a Standard seat on the Star Express, tickets can start from ¥5900 (12-13 hour bus ride)

Name of Hostel Price Telephone Address
Higashiyama Youth hostel ¥3900~ 075‐761‐8135 kyotoshi higashiyamaku sangudari shinkawabashi gokenmachi
Udanoya Youth Hostel ¥3300~ 075‐462‐2288 kyotoshi ukyouku uzumasa nakayamachou 29
Kiyomizu Youth Hostel ¥3960~ 075‐541‐1651 kyoto shi higashiyama ku gogudaribashi higashi
Miyama Heimat Youth Hostel ¥3950~ 0771‐75‐0997 minamitanshi miyama  kofuchijuusai 37
Ama-No-Hashidate  Youth Hostel ¥2500~ 0772‐27‐0121

miyadzushi nakano 905

 

Hiroshima

Hiroshima is a thriving city with rich culture located in the Chugoku region of Honshu (Japan’s main island). Although it is mainly known for being the first city to have an atomic bomb dropped on it during World War II, Hiroshima has much more to offer. Of course, the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Museum is a must visit (along with the Hiroshima Peace Memorial Park and Hiroshima Peace Memorial). Hiroshima’s rebuilt castle (Rijo, with Gokoku Shrine within) and Hijiyama Park are also worth seeing.

Hiroshima is famous for their special kind of okonomiyaki (Hiroshima-yaki). There is more cabbage than usual and a layer of soba is added, as well as a layer of egg on top. If you go to Hiroshima, this is a must try!!

Name of Hostel Price Telephone Address
Hiroshima Youth Hostel ¥2500~ 082‐221‐5343 hiroshima shi higashi ku ushita shinchou 1 – 13 - 6
HANA Hostel ¥2500~ 082‐263‐2980 hiroshima shi minami ku aragami chou
Backpacker Miyajima ¥2500~ 0829‐56‐3650 hatsukashi miyashimakuchi 1 – 8 - 11

 

Mt. Aso

Mt. Aso, the largest active volcano in Japan and one of the largest calderas in the world, is located in Kumamoto Prefecture in Aso Kuju National Park. Aso Shrine is also nearby.

How To Get There

(Short distance away- taking a plane is not recommended)

ALL KYUSHU AREA RAIL PASS- 3 day (¥13,000) or 5 day (¥16,000)
JR Kyushu RailPass website

Where To Stay

Aso Youth Hostel: A 20 minute walk from JR Aso station, ¥2000 a night (no breakfast or dinner), you can pick up hiking maps here to show you all the hiking/walking trails around Mt. Aso. Aso Youth Hostel website

Aso Rider House: no shower or bath, but many nearby onsens. Close to JR Aso station and Mt. Aso. Only 20 minute ride on a local bus (for ¥280). Dorms from $15, privates from $20. Aso Rider House reservation on Hostel World website

 

Nagasaki

Nagasaki is a major port city and is the capital and largest city in Nagasaki Prefecture. It became historically significant in 1542 when Portuguese ships started docking at its ports. Nagasaki is probably most well-known for being the second city in the world to be attacked by an atomic bomb. On August 9th, 1945, at 11:02 a.m. Nagasaki was hit and 40,000 people were immediately killed. The Atomic Bomb Museum, Chinatown, the Nagasaki Peace Park, Megane Bridge, and Kofukuji Temple are a few of the many places that are a must-visit in Nagasaki.

 

Osaka

Osaka is the third largest city in Japan, located in western Honshu (Kansai region). It is famous for its own food culture with food such as 'Osaka okonomiyaki' and 'takoyaki'. People in Osaka are known to be very lively and comedic entertainment is frequently based here. If your Japanese is good enough you may notice the famous 'osaka ben' (osaka accent).

Name of Hotel Price Telephone Area
Shin Osaka Youth Hostel ¥3300~ 06‐6370‐5427 Higashi-yodogawa
Osaka Shi Youth Hostel ¥2500~ 06‐6699‐5631 Higashi sumiyoshi
Osaka Kokusai Youth Hostel ¥3900~ 072‐265‐8539 Takaishi
Osaka Fu Hattori Ryokuchi  Youth Hostel ¥2500~ 06‐6862‐0600 Toyonakashi

 

JR Kyushu Train Ticket Reservation Center: 092-411-1616

 

Pusan (South Korea)

Pusan, the second largest city in Korea and the largest port town, is the closest foreign city to Fukuoka and is easier to get to than Tokyo! If you’re a shopper, you can head over to Seomyeon, Gwangbok-dong, Busan Dae Hakap, or Haeundae. If you want a more cultural experience, the area around PNU (Pusan National University) is packed full with student theaters, cafes, and bars. Nearby is Beomeosa (the main Korean Buddhist temple in Pusan). Pusan is also known for it’s great six beaches- at Haeundae there’s a “carnival boardwalk” that lines the beach, Gwangalli Beach boasts beautiful cafes, bars, and restaurants, while the areas around Pukyong National University and Kyungsung University also offer bars, clubs, and restaurants that typically attract the local college students. During the Korean war, Pusan became the biggest refugee destination and people from all over Korea ended up moving to Pusan and adapting their local foods to become more of a “Pusan specialty”. Pusan is famous for Dongnae-pajeon (a type of Korean pancake), topped with whole scallions, sliced chili peppers, and various kinds of seafood as well as dwaeji gukbap (pork soup rice).

How To Get There

Using H.I.S. Travel, you can get Beetle Ferry tickets anywhere from ¥10,000 - ¥15,000 (prices often change, though, and there are many deals available on the H.I.S. website)

Where To Stay

Toyoko Inn Busan Jungangdong- check in at 4 p.m. and get a single person hotel room for as cheap as 55,000 won (around ¥4000), within a 20 minute distance from Pusan Port.
Make a reservation of the Toyoku Inn website

Indy House Hostel- check in from 10 a.m.-10 p.m., US$19/night, located 2 minutes away from a subway station, free wifi, free toast/coffee for breakfast, kitchen/cable TV, best to call beforehand and reserve.
Make a reservation on the Lonely Planet website

 

Tokyo

With a population of over 12 million people, Tokyo is Japan’s capital. Located in central Honshu, Tokyo is the nation’s center of politics, business, mass media, and pop culture. The many sightseeing spots, entertainment establishments and shopping areas certainly make it worth a visit.

Travel to Tokyo by:

  • Airplane: 2 hours. Cheap flights from 5,000 yen one way, and sometimes cheaper!
  • Bullet train: 6 hours. One way from about 15,000 yen. Discount tickets available from resellers such as Ticket King and Daikokuya. Schedule and tickets available from JR Kyushu.
  • Bus: Takes most of a day, requirees changing buses at Nagoya. One way from about 10,000 yen with Willer Buses.

Stay at:

Name of Hostel Price Telephone Area
Tokyo Kokusai Hostel ¥3860 03‐3235‐1107 Shinjuku
Tokyo yoyogi hostel ¥3600 03‐3467‐9163 Shibuya
Tokyo sumidagawa hostel ¥3600 03‐3851‐1121 Yanagibashi
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Hakataekihigashi 1-16-23, Fukuoka-shi 812-0013, Japan
Phone: +81 (0)92 472 0123

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3rd floor, Shinjuku 5-17-6, Shinjuku-ku, Tokyo 160-0022, Japan
Phone: +81 (0)3 6457 3554

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