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How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/29 21:19
Hi everyone,

Ifm planning a 3 month trip to Japan (March- May 2021) and I want to start it in Kyushu. But I canft estimate how long I should stay there. I was thinking about 18-24 days, but maybe thatfs too long? Ifve never been to Kyushu before.

Ifm doubting because:

* I donft have a driversf license and I heard relatively most parts of Kyushu are hard(er) to reach by train/bus than most of Honshu (?)
* I can only find itineraries for about 1- 1.5 weeks for the entire island, so I assume three weeks might be long? Then again: Ifm someone whofd rather travel somewhat slow paced
(spending at least 3 days in every city or town to cover one full day and arrival/departure if traveling from A to B takes over two hours)
A little more info on what Ifd like from my travels:
• Aside from the Takachiho gorge in Miyazaki prefecture, I donft have places in Kyushu I absolutely want to go to (except for Yakushima, if I can save up for the extra travel costs of the flight/ferry)
• I want to get a general feeling of the island, with a balance of city and countryside
• Ifm planning to start in Kagoshima and end in Fukuoka, but thatfs mostly to keep a logical south to north route to prevent wasting time going back and forward all the time. Also, if I end my trip in Fukuoka, I can easily proceed to Honshu from there with the nightbus / shinkansen.

How long would you say Kyushu is worth exploring for? :)

Thanks for any tips or help. Stay save and healthy!
by Blossoming tulip  

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 07:35
My last trip to Kyushu was quite rapid and covered a week (two nights in each of three places - excluded Fukuoka). I could easily have added another week, especially if you are including Yakushima and some of the other places you mentioned. If time wasn't an issue, if I was to repeat a visit for someone I would probably do a bit over two weeks, maybe up to three, and as you say, your preference is for slightly longer in each location so the time will fill up pretty quick.
by JapanCustomTours rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 08:27
When I took 2 months to travel Japan, I allocated 10 days in Kyushu. I could have easily spent another week, but I had the rest of Japan to explore. One thing to note when you are traveling that long is: it is difficult to plan for everyday of 60 days (or 90 in your case), and stick to it. So you need to be flexible. You could just plan for the first week and wing the rest, if there is no major holidays in your duration. If there is a major holiday during your time there, it is a good idea to secure accommodations in advance which you can change if your plan should change.
by trips2japan (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 11:26
Only 1.5 weeks of stuff to do in Kyushu???


I"m willing to suggest a 3 week itinerary - but I want to know if you like onsens, very easy hikes (nature) and traditional towns before I put this together. I don't expect you to use what I make - just use it as some ideas....

I've spent easily over 2 months in Kyushu and have been to most of the major places. It's true that Kyushu is well explored by car - but there is still plenty to see via public transport.
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 14:38
A three month trip to Japan.

I'd suggest two weeks in each of the seven regions. And drop a few days for the regions you have already visited.
by Hakata14 (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 14:40
2 weeks out of 13 seems reasonable.
by H (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 16:17
I love Kyushu, and have gone there in the spring. I went late April to early May, and saw many Festivals. I didnft need a car. From what I am reading on the internet, we are already having human trials of a vacine, so I think next spring will work. I only spent two nights in Miyazaki, which, could have easily been four to six. Miyazaki was a 1980s honeymoon location, so there a lot of things to see there.

I also went to Yakushima Island, and if you are not planning to do a lot of individual hiking, I would highly suggest doing the two day bus tour, which, will pick you and you luggage up at the seaport, tour, drop you off at your hotel, and the do the reverse on the second day, so that all transportation on the island is taken care of.

Here are some ideas:

Huis Ten Bosch - a Dutch theme park near Nagasaki. Massive spring flower beds.
Easter Island Moai Statues at Minamisanriku, near Miyazaki.
Arita & Imari - known for their porcelain. (festival)
Gunkanjima - Battleship Island near Nagasaki
Nagasakifs Peace Park & A-bomb museum
Dejima - Former Dutch trading district, near Nagasakifs Chinatown.
Yamagawa - a old canal waterway city, known for their Unagi (river eel). {Day trip from Fukuoka}
Obi Castle - Samurai Town south of Miyazaki, known as gLittle Kyotoh, with a very nice park of Cherry Trees nearby. {day trip from Miyazaki}
Karachi Fuji Gardens - Possibly the best Wisteria Gardens in Japan, featuring flowering tunnels. {golden week, day trip from Fukuoka, ticketed}
Hells of Beppu - geyser, mud pots, thermal vents, and hot springs galore.
Satubaru Burial Mounds - a Park with simultaneous Rapeseed (bright yellow flowers) and Sakura (Cherry Blossoms) near Miyazaki. (Festival)
Aoshima Island & Beach {Day trip from Miyazaki}
Undo Jingu marriage & Cave Shrine bear Miyazaki.
Fukuokafs Canal City & Food Stalls.
Korukawa & Yufuin - hot springs resort towns.
In Nagasaki, a day can be spent along Nishizaka hill, starting at the Suwa Temple, History & Culture Museum, Kannon Universal Temple (18 meter tall Kannon on top of of the Temple, which is shaped like a giant turtle, and ending in the 26 Martyrs Museum & Monument.
Hakata Dontaku Port Festival & Parade - early May.
Kagoshima Spring Festival- late April.
Takachiho grand Spring festival- mid April.
Beppu Ogiyama Fire Festival & Hot Spring Festival - early April.

As a general plan, I would consider starting in Beppu, hitting one of the hot springs resort towns, south to Nobeoka, to take a bus to Takachiho, south to Miyazaki, Kagoshima, Yakushima Island, north to Nagasaki, and ending in Fukuoka.

I hope this gives some ideas.
Good Luck, in planning your trip.
by ebaychucky311 rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 16:21
Oops... Thatfs Udo Shrine near Nagasaki.
by ebaychucky311 rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 18:34
Thank you for the advice everyone, this really helps.
Ifd love a 3 week itinerary, mfedley, thatfs a kind offer! I do like onsens, and traditional towns and I also would love to hike in nature. Easy hikes would be perfect; Ifm not an experienced hiker.
by Blossoming tulip rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/4/30 22:35
Yes... Kyushu does have very good hiking trails. Will you be backpacking on this trip?

Yakushima Island is almost a must, and check Mount Aso, the Shimabara Peninsula, and the Kirishima Mountains. Some areas area restricted access, due to volcanic activity.

I will also suggest a few other areas outside Kyushu for hiking. The Tanabe Tourism website has full hiking profiles for the paths in the Kumano Area. Chichibu has a 34 Kannon Temple Pilgrimage thatfs about 100 kilometers long. I have walked it in sections, using a single hotel room in Chichibu. There is also a biking trail that goes over bridges across the Seto Inland Sea, called the Shimanami Kaido. It can also be hiked, and is not too strenuous.

If your plan is to go to a town with luggage, and then visit the area around it on day trips, it will be a very different trip. This is my preferred style of trip.

In terms of making an itinerary, since you are thinking about hiking, you probably should plan your own. Look on Japan Guidefs Story Section for past trips that have been reported.
by ebaychucky311 rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/5/1 12:58
Thanks for your response to the things you like. What I'll do is put together a multi-week trip with things which can be accessed via public transport. The comment about starting in Oita and finishing in Fukuoka really makes sense - it's hard to describe it but I'll basically make a Kyushu loop with info and you can take what you find interesting and ignore the stuff that does not interest you

The mfedley Kyushu Public Transport Loop (I'll cut and paste this in the future - thus why I gave it this name for JG search in the future)

Starting Location: Beppu or Yufu (Beppu is better for links) for 2-3 nights

Some day trips:
Kitsuki: https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2886
Hiji: https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2884
Oita City: https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2887
Beppu: https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2889
Yufu: https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2890

Next Location: Usuki https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2893

Next Location (Takachiho - slightly difficult to get to) https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2894

Next Location: Miyazaki City + Obi

Miyazaki: https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2895
Obi: https://www.japan-guide.com/community/mfedley/report-2898

Next Stop: Kagoshima


Next Stop: Ibusuki + Surrounds (has ferry to Yakushima)


Next Stop: Yakushima


Next Stop: Kumamoto (via flight from Yakushima to Kagoshima)


Next Stop: Saga Prefecture (many good day trips from here!)


Next Stop: Nagasaki City (Nagasaki City is one of the most interesting in the country)


Next Stop: Rural Nagasaki (visited by bus or train)


Next Stop: Fukuoka City (not my favorite city but lots of good day trips)


Fukuoka Day Trips


Note that some of my favorite places in Japan are also on Kyushu but I've not included them here because of public transport. There is probably 2 months of stuff here and more on my user profile for Kyushu as well....
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/5/1 13:38
Mfedley: WOW... This question just got earmarked, so that I can refer back to all of your trips.

You seem to have also used my gsuggestedh path around Kyushu. I take it that you agree with it?

Thank You.
by ebaychucky311 rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/5/1 13:52
Starting in Kagoshima means lots of criss crossing. Starting in Oita (which has a reasonable sized airport and ferries from Honshu and Shikoku) makes more sense. There is some stuff do to between Fukuoka City and Oita - but it really requires a car to make the most of this area - specifically the Kunisaki Peninsula
by mfedley rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/5/2 02:08
And donft miss the Toto toilet museum in Kokura (Kitakyushu), if you have any interest in that sort of thing.

You might like to think about where in your trip you do the Kyushu segment. With plenty of nice nature, onsens, and nice rural places, it might be nice if you can sandwich it between some more urban segments of the trip, perhaps?
by Winter Visitor rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/5/27 23:02
This thread makes me wanna file a leave for months and head to Japan next year. :(( Thank you for this thread, noting it too.
by Utagawa rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/5/28 10:11
Kirishima-Jingu, Kirishima onsens, Ebino Kogen are beautiful places, and accessible by public transport.

by .. (guest) rate this post as useful

Re: How long should I travel through Kyushu? 2020/6/2 03:01
There really are so many variables. If not driving, then you cut off a lot of good places. There are some excellent sights to see that are not well served by trains or buses, and some not at all. And a taxi would be crazy expensive.
If you add in Yakushima, then you will need to add in a lot more time - like four days at least. Of course this assumes you are willing and able to go on some of the long hikes (some can be 8 hours long). If your pace is slower, then of course it will take longer, but that is also to your advantage since for a lot of places, trains and buses can be few and far between in a lot of areas. The other question is how much hiking you want to do. It is very rewarding, but one area could take more time with that activity.
You could spend 2 weeks in Kyushu quite nicely. But it depends on what you want.
And that is the big question - taking a lot of time to go someplace far away and remote without a lot of ideas on what you want to do means a much higher chance of just wasting time. You need to check out what the island offers, and what you want to see and do.

If going in Mar-May, there are many good places to see the plum & cherry blossoms. The first week of May also has the Dontaku festival in Fukuoka, one of Japan's bigger ones. You should definitely also look at the various Kyushu rail passes and Sun-Q bus pass.

by Ken (guest) rate this post as useful

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