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Kyushu trip 2019/3/31 11:42
Dear All

Appreciate some views of this itinerary:

Day 1-3 - Fukuoka, with a day trip to Beppu

Day 4-6 - Kumamoto, with a day trip to Takachiho

Day 7-8 Kagoshima

Day 9 - Back to Fukuoka, and fly out from Fukuoka.

What would be a good pass (bus or train) would be good for this itinerary? Not intending to rent any car. Will only depends on public transport.

Thank you.
by snakyman  

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/3/31 16:33
What is your main purpose of this trip?

The reason I ask is there is plenty to see and do in Kyushu - but I wanted to see what specifically you are interested in before I make suggestions.

This is possible (apart from the day trip to Beppu), but it's also not as exciting as it could be. For example - you are missing out on what I consider Kyushu's best city - Nagasaki. Kyushu is also not that big which means that there are reasonable train and bus links to many locations.
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/3/31 22:01
@mfedley will be a great resource for you already so I wont bother adding any suggestions! But I just wanted to note that Takachiho as a day trip will miss the nightly yokagura performance of (a chapter from) the story of Japan's birth. I found it really unique and interesting when I visited there. If you're only interested in some of the nature like Takachiho Gorge, then that's fine, but if you'd be interested in the mythology, you'll want to stay the night in order to see the performance, OR rent a car for that day to be able to return to your hotel in (I assume) Kumamoto.
by Murny (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/1 03:53
Mfedley is quite right - skipping Nagasaki would be a tragedy.

In addition, if you don't drive, you'd have to take a bus to Takachiho which is around 3 hours one way at best, meaning that nearly 6 hours of your day is just sitting on buses - not a practical way to spend a day. Your time could be better utilized elsewhere. And Kyushu is loaded with great places.

As for passes, the round trip to Beppu with the bullet train down to Kagoshima and back within a week does make a 7 day JR Pass worthwhile, though you'd still have to pay for the bus to Takachiho.
by Ken (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/1 04:50
You should check the JR Kyushu Rail Pass to see if it fits your itinerary.

I toured the entire Kyushu 2 years ago, and I thought the coastal Miyazaki was a hidden gem. I enjoyed it more than Kagoshima and Kumamoto. In Kumamoto I enjoyed riding a steam locomotive (SL) to Hitoyoshi. Kagoshima is good if you are into Japanese history around the time of Meiji Restoration (1868), with the last of shogun and samurai.
by Bas Ashi (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/1 23:22
Hi All

Thanks for your views thus far.

@mfedley - my interests are mainly nature, scenery, onsen, japanese culture and food. Not too much on history and big cityscapes. Perhaps you can elaborate on Nagasaki as the best city. And I also wonder why would you say other day trips are possible, apart from Beppu.

@Murny and @Ken - Takachiho looks like a must for me. I understand doing a trip is a bad idea. I can forgo Kagoshima, but really want to keep Takachiho. Need to research more to make this work.

@Bas ashi - thanks for the recommendation on Miyazaki. I could consider that.

by snakyman rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/2 00:08
If you are into onsen, donft miss out on Kurokawa Onsen and visiting various of the onsen there. Superb.
If you can stay a night, much better.

While you can do it with public transport it is easier with a rental car eg from Kumamoto and you can use it also to get to Takachiho and visit Aso in between.

Enjoy your trip to Kyushu!
by LikeBike (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/2 00:11
Beppu is roughly 2 1/2 hours one way from Fukuoka. That's a 5 hour round trip to visit some hot springs which is a long way to travel.

Why do I like Nagasaki?? Well, it's probably got the most to do out of any city in Kyushu - and the only prefecture I have not visited in depth in Kyushu is Kagoshima. Nagasaki is also a gritty city which is something I've not seen much in Japan - and I see this as a good thing.

I personally think that Unzen Onsen is better than Beppu for the water and volcanics, but that's just my personal view

Takachiho is one of my favourite locations in Kyushu, but it also takes roughly 3 hours by bus (one way) which means that you really need to stay the night to make it workable.

Kyushu is well known as being one of the cradles of Japanese civilization, so this significantly limits what I can suggest if your not really into history.

If I only had 8 days in Kyushu, I would do the following.

Night 1: Unzen Onsen (hot springs + hell valley)
Night 2/3: Nagasaki
Night 4: Ureshino Onsen (trip to Yutoku Inari Shrine) + possible visit to Yoshinogiri Park
Night 5: Kumamoto: Visit the castle - see what's here
Night 6: Takachiho
Rest of the time - Fukuoka and giving more space at towns of your choice.

Personally, I find that Kyushu is best visited via car specifically for out of the way locations...
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/2 00:14
@ken - I saw in another posting that you recommended: Along the way, seeing the Yutoku Inari Shrine...

This was in reply to query for a 3 day pass, traveling from Fukuoka to Nagasaki.

Question: Is it possible to stop along the way to see the Shrine? Just googled the Shrine. It's gorgeous. Would most likely to add in to my itinerary.

by snakyman rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/2 15:04
Would you be willing to rent a car for some or all of the trip? I think from the things you listed you're interested in, relying only on public transportation might make some of them difficult or impossible. Although driving is not for everyone, it does give you the greatest flexibility!

I took a trip to Southern Kyushu a few years ago via rental car. If you're interested, I made some trip reports and took some pictures you can check out here on the website. Here's the one from Takachiho:

My absolute favorite area, which you didn't say anything about in your post but I do just want to mention based on the interests you listed, was Cape Toi down in Miyazaki:

It is very far and definitely really only accessible by rental car, but a breathtakingly gorgeous area.

(Sorry the name doesn't match, I'm on mobile so not logged in!)
by Murny (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/2 17:32
Days 1-2 Fukuoka
Days 3-4 bus to Yufuin (with day trip to Beppu)
Day 5 bus to Kurokawa
Days 6-7 bus to Kumamoto
Days 8-9 train to Kagoshima

I wasn't wowed by Nagasaki. Dirty industrial city over run by Chinese tourists. Some nice sights though. But Nagasaki seems somewhat away from the sights you wanna see.
by hakata14 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/2 23:00
@mfedley - appreciate your detail itinerary. It really looks like something I can do. A question - is there a bus or train pass which I can use for that itinerary.

Thanks everyone for your ideas. I will have to decide. One thing for sure - will drop Kagoshima, and probably Kumamoto. No matter what, I believe I should have a good time in Kyushu.

by snakyman rate this post as useful

Re: Kyushu trip 2019/4/3 04:27
Yes, along the way to Nagasaki you can stop by the Yutoku Inari Shrine. It is one of the highlights of Kyushu, yet still mostly ignored by the mobs.

I highly recommend Nagasaki - there is no other city in Japan like it, with its Chinese influences (and I don't just mean Chinatown). Sasebo has a lot to see also, especially with a car. The island cruise if the weather is good can be especially memorable, plus lots of places for great scenic views.

Huis Ten Bosch can be very good also, but really during their peak flower festivals like tulips, hydrangea, etc.
by Ken (guest) rate this post as useful

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