Fukuoka City


A blend of a castle town and a port city, Fukuoka was born as a new urban landscape in 1889

For the student of Japanese, Fukuoka is the ideal place to start, as it is one of the smaller and less populated cities of Japan.

"Colourful festivals, beautiful national treasures and the world-famous ‘space theme park’, capture the attention of students and tourists alike."

The city’s main festival, held in July, is the spectacular Hakata Gion Yakamasa Matsuri which lasts for two weeks and culminates on the 15th with a 5km race between seven groups of men carrying huge portable shrines.

Cosmopolitan and international, there is little about Fukuoka that appears traditional. However, contemporary and modern architecture are complemented by a community with a rich cultural heritage and a fantastic culinary scene.

When you aren’t studying too hard, be sure to visit the nearby temples and shrines for their beautiful moss gardens and peaceful ambience.

Fukuoka shopping mall

Read your books in the Maizuru park and see the castle ruins and old towers. Spend some time in the unusual underground city of Tenjin, with twelve avenues of shops and restaurants or at Canal City, Fukuoka’s largest shopping centre.

Nokonoshima, which combines natural and man-made parks and beaches, is a quick ferry ride from Fukuoka and an ideal place to relax, cycle and swim. Or visit Shikanoshima island which has fresh seafood restaurants lining the harbour streets and a popular beach with a fishing shrine.

Visit the folk museum Hakata Machiya Furusato-kan. Spread over three traditional townhouses, this museum recreates a neighbourhood from the late Meiji era. Replica buildings house photographs and displays of traditional culture. The large Fukuoka Asian Art Museum houses the world-renowned Asia gallery and offers touring exhibitions of contemporary art from East Asia to Pakistan.

In the evenings, reward a hard day’s work by exploring Fukuoka’s extraordinary culinary culture and making your way to the top of Fukuoka tower where you can watch the sunset with splendid views across Hakata Bay. Finish the day with a walk along the river bank and a drink in one of Fukuoka’s ‘Yatai’ stalls and enjoy a city full of potential, culture and promise.

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