Fly to Fukuoka, a vibrant city on Japan’s southernmost island of Kyushu.
Fukuoka Airport (FUK)
As one of the busiest airports in Japan, Fukuoka has an excellent range of facilities to service the millions of passengers it sees every year. In terms of amenities, you will find access to a currency exchange, ATMs, banking services, insurance booths, free wireless internet and provided PC access points, device charging areas, pharmacies, nursing rooms and a variety of shops to browse in.
Airlines to Fukuoka
There are lots of commercial airlines that fly to FUK Airport, though if you are flying from Australia you will likely be redirected through Shanghai (PVG), Beijing (PEK), Singapore (SIN) or Bangkok (BKK).
The major carriers on this route are: Japan Airlines, ANA, Singapore Airlines, Cathay Pacific, Jetstar, China Eastern, Korea Air, Qantas, Thai Airways, China Airlines, Asiana Airlines, Air China, China Southern, Philippine Airlines and Jetstar Asia.
Getting into Fukuoka
You will find taxi stands just outside the arrivals area of both the International and Domestic terminals. The journey should take between 15-30 minutes if you are headed to Hakata Station, or Tenjin in the city centre. Expect the journey to Hakata to cost about 1250JPY ($15), and about 1800JPY ($21) to Tenjin.
By public transport
There is an excellent subway service available from the airport, and passengers will find a free shuttle service that will ferry to them to the subway station in the Domestic Terminal. The city subway will provide you with a direct connection into downtown; take the subway train to Hakata Station (a five minute ride) or to the city centre of Tenjin (10 minutes). A fare to Hakata or Tenjin costs 260JPY ($3). There is also a city bus (Route 2) into central Fukuoka.
Of course, you can always hire a car. This is done through the information desks located on the first floor of every terminal. If you’d rather sort this out in advance of your arrival, then use our handy car hire search tool.
What can you do in Fukuoka?
The largest city in Kyushu, Fukuoka acts as the financial brain and cultural heart of this southernmost island of Japan.
There’s plenty to see and do in this city, but it’s worth starting in the Kyushu National Museum, which charts the island’s distinctive history. Vaunted for its architectural design, and its wonderful displays and exhibits, visiting this museum will give you an excellent insight into Fukuoka, and Kyushu’s past, and will make the other sites you visit all that more meaningful.
No matter how long you are staying in this city, you should make time for Fukuoka Castle; a 17th century building perched on a hill, and set in extensive and beautiful grounds, now part of the larger Maizuru Park. Then find your way to Ohori Park, whose man-made lake once made up the moat of Fukuoka Castle. Then head on down to Yatai and try some famous Fukuoka ramen, celebrated throughout the country for its tonkotsu variety of this dish.
Investigate the shrines in this city too, either by dropping into Sumiyoshi-jinja Shrine, for seafarers and sailors, the Shinto shrine Kushida-jinja, or strike out east and see the fantastic reclining Buddha at the Nanzoin Temple site.
For something truly idiosyncratic though, travellers should book a trip to Ainoshima Island off of Hakata Bay. This isle is known throughout the world for the staggering amount of cute cats that have made this island their home. If you’re a cat lover, there’s no better place in the world to be.
When should you go?
There’s two classes of thought when it comes to visiting Fukuoka: those who love the heat and warm weather should aim for the summer months (June-August) where the temperature ranges from about 23-28°C. However, spring (March-May) and autumn (September-November) are the other recommended times to go, the local flora is either bursting with cherry blossoms in spring, or turning yellow and red in autumn. Average temperatures in these seasons are also very temperate, expect the mercury to hover between 15-24°.
What do you need to know?
Currency: The Japanese Yen (JPY)
Visas: A lot of foreigners visiting Japan will find that they do not need to apply for a visa in advance and a 15-90 day visa will be issued on arrival. However, it is worth checking their restrictions, which can be found on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website, which lists which countries need to apply for a visa in advance of their trip.
Please note all information is current as of December 2015.
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