Here is the 1st day of our week-long road trip through Kyushu. Take a short 2 hour flight from Tokyo Haneda to Fukuoka airport or 5 hour bullet train ride to Hakata Station. We recommend renting a small car to drive around Kyushu’s best locations. Here are also our packing recommendations for your Family Road Trip Essentials.
Kyushu with Kids Road Trip
Day 1 – Fukuoka with Kids
more days to come…..
Things to do in Fukuoka with Kids
- Marine World Uminakamichi Aquarium
- Island City Chuo Park Playground
- Fukuoka City Zoological Garden
- Ohori Park & Japanese Garden
- Hakata Yatai Food Stalls
- Canal City Hakata Mall
Marine World Uminakamichi Aquarium
*Fukuoka Airport to Marine World Aquarium by car
(30 min / about 20 kilometers)
Start your day early and take an early flight to Fukuoka Airport from Haneda Airport. Pick up your rental and drive 30 minutes to Marine World Uminakamichi, a fantastic aquarium with a beautiful array of sea creatures, penguins, dolphin shows, and an area where you can feed sea lions. Plan at least 2 hours exploring the floors, watching the shows and feedings. They have a cafe that has a viewing window of the dolphin tank, and an open show pool with the bay in the background. The first floor holds sea creatures in the waters of Kyushu and a nature forest, a 7 meter deep aquarium with sharks, schools of fish and a number of sea creatures. There is also an outdoor Penguin area and Sea Otter pool. The second floor holds Coral Reefs of Amami, Kyushu Jelly Fish, The first Megamouth speciman found in Kyushu, and the 3rd floor exhibit recreates the unique ocean habitat of each prefecture in Kyushu in the aquarium.
Marine World Uminakamichi Aquarium Details:
Address: 18-28 Saitozaki, Higashi Ward, Fukuoka, 811-0321 (Google Maps)
March – November 9:30～17:30
December – February 10:00～17:00
Golden Week 9:30～21:00
Summer Vacation 9:00～21:00
- From JR Hakata Station Take the Kagashima Main Line (upbound) for 11 minutes to the Kashii Station. Transfer to the JR Kashii Line (to Saitozaki) for 20 minutes to Uminonakamichi Station.
- From Subway Tenjin Sta. Take Subway Line No. 2 for 12 minutes to Kaizuka Sta. Transfer to Nishitetsu Kaizuka Line, for 18 minutes to Wajiro Sta. Transfer to the JR Kashii Line (to Saitozaki), for 12 minutes to Uminonakamichi Station.
- Visitors from Fukuoka City (Tenjin / Hakata / Fukuoka Airport) Get off at Urban Expressway No.1 Kashiihama Ramp, turn left at the second light at Kataosabashi intersection. Go through Island City, and go straight across Gannosu intersection to Uminonakamichi Seaside Park. (From Kashiihama Ramp via Island City Approx. 6 km, 15 min.)
- From Kumamoto / Oita / Nagasaki / Saga / Minami-kyushu area From Kyushu Expressway Dazaifu IC, go through the Urban Expressway No.2 / No.1, get off at Kashiihama Ramp, and follow the directions above. (From Dazaifu IC to Kashiihama Ramp is approx. 20 min.)
- From Kitakyushu / Chugoku Area From Kyushu Expressway, take the Koga IC to the National Route No.3 towards Fukuoka. Approx. 4 km ahead, turn right at Omori crossing (Nafco is on the left), then turn right at Mitoma three-forked road approx. ahead 4.5 km (Lawson on the left). Go to Uminonakamichi Seaside Park. (From Koga IC via Omori crossing approx. 16 km, 25 min.)
THE FIVE LARGEST AQUARIUMS IN JAPAN
* Marine World Uminakamichi to Island City Chuo Park Playground (12 min drive / 7.2 kilometers)
A great spot for active kids to run around or relax and take a leisurely stroll along the lake. The kids plaza is equipped with a large playground, roller-slide, suspension bridge, jungle gym, and multi-purpose space. Our kids didn’t want to leave! Beautiful in Spring, a great spot to take a break from a long travel day.
The green space is shared with the Grin-Grin Experimental Learning Facility, Fukuoka Children’s Hospital, International Exchange Gardens and flowering tree gardens.
“Grin Grin is divided into blocks with different interiors and themes: the northern section is a free space with a large green area, the central section is mainly for exhibiting subtropical plants, and the south section is a workshop space where visitors can experience and learn how to grow plants.
Among these three blocks, the central and south section will be charged to enter. The central section exhibits subtropical plants, orchids, and many other flowers and plants, as well as the paper kite butterflies.
In the south section are subtropical fruits, flowers, and plants, and a water tank with tropical fishes and water plants.
You may also go up the roof from the central and south section and view the whole park, the mountains, the sea, and the city.”
Island City Chuo Park Playground Details:
Address: 4-1 Kashiiteriha, Higashi Ward, Fukuoka (〒813-0017 福岡県福岡市東区香椎照葉４丁目１)
Hours: Open Daily
Parking: Parking: 1 hour 100 JPY. 12 hours MAX at 500 JPY
Access By Train: Get off at JR Hakata Station and transfer to the Nishitetsu bus that stops at the Island City Chuo Koen-Mae bus stop.
By bus: Get on the Nishitetsu bus in front of the Tenjin Post Office, ride on the urban expressway, and get off at Island City Chuo Koen-Mae bus stop.
Island City Chuo Park Playground to Fukuoka City Zoological Garden (23 min drive / 13 kilometers)
The Fukuoka City Zoological Garden was established in 1953 and is located within Minami-koen Park. The zoo is set amongst the hillsides of Fukuoka, creating a lush and leafy atmosphere, making it feel very natural and authentic. It is divided into five areas, each representing one continent, and it features about 700 animals with a total of 160 species, including 57 species of mammals, 88 species of birds, and 23 species of reptiles. Currently the zoo is undergoing renovations. Some areas like the Asian Tropical Valley Area, cafe and gift shop are modern and clean however other areas of the zoo are in need of some serious TLC. If visiting in Spring visit the 2600 plants varieties at the Botanical Garden. The Botanical Garden contains approximately 1,300 types of outdoor, mostly common, garden plants. Its greenhouse contains over 1,200 plant species as well.
|Individual||Group（More than 30 individuals）|
|Middle School and younger||Free||Free|
Fukuoka City Zoological Garden Details:
Address: 1-1 Minamikoen, Chuo Ward, Fukuoka, 810-0037 (〒810-0037 福岡県福岡市中央区南公園１−1)
Business Hours: 9am – 5pm (Last entry at 4:30pm)
CLOSED on Mondays (except on national holidays, closes on following day), New Year’s period (Dec. 29 – Jan. 1) * Open on the last Monday of March.
Parking: Regular-size cars: 500yen; Mid-size: 1,000yen; Large-size: 2,000yen
Ohori Park & Japanese Garden
*Fukuoka City Zoological Garden to Ohori Park & Japanese Garden (10 min drive / 3 kilometers)
Ohori Park is a beautifully maintained public park surrounding a lake. The park holds two separate playgrounds, offers swan boating, walking paths, Japanese Garden, and Fukuoka Art Museum. The Fukuoka City Art Museum is a simple but elegant house designed by Maekawa Kunio and has a permanent collection that includes Buddhist statues dating back to the 11th century and paintings and sculptures by modern artists like Miro and Dali. A few steps from the museum is the Ohori Park Japanese Garden, a beautiful oasis and perfect place with rock garden, and many tea rooms with outdoor gardens.
Ohori Park (大濠公園) Details:
Rental boats (March – early November)
Amenbo (Water Strider) boat (two people) 30 minutes 1,000 yen (single) 30 minutes 600 yen
Swan boat (two people) 30 minutes 1,100 yen; (four people) 30 minutes 1,600 yen
Row boat (two people) 30 minutes 600 yen
Ohori Park Japanese Garden
Business Hours: 9:00 to 17:00 (until 18:00 from June to August). Closed Mondays (or following day if Monday is a national holiday), December 29 to January 3
Admission: 250 yen
Fukuoka Art Museum
Business Hours: 9:30 to 17:30 (until 20:00 on Fridays and Saturdays from July to October). Closed Mondays (or following day if Monday is a national holiday), December 29 to January 4
Admission: 200 yen (permanent exhibition)
Address: 1 Ohorikoen, Chuo Ward, Fukuoka (〒810-0051 福岡県福岡市中央区大濠公園１)
Parking: lot located across from the boat house and restaurant
Canal City Hakata
Canal City Hakata (キャナルシティ博多) – is the largest shopping and entertainment complex in Fukuoka. It holds about 250 stores, restaurants, game center, cinemas, two hotels and a canal running through the complex. At the center of the canal there is a fountain with water shows every 30 minutes from 10:00 until 22:00; also a 3D projection mapping show combined with lights, sounds and dancing water show.
The fifth floor consists of the “Ramen Stadium”(similar to Tokyo Ramen Kokugikan Mai in Tokyo’s Aqua City Mall in Odaiba), which has eight ramen shops with noodle dishes from across Japan, including the local specialty Hakata Ramen.
Some notable stores are Hamley’s, Hello Kitty, teamLab – Learn & Play! Amusement park, The Gundam Base, Muji, LUSH to name a few. Here is their full shop list
Canal City Shopping Mall Hakata
Address: 1 Chome-2 Sumiyoshi, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka (〒812-0018 福岡県福岡市博多区住吉１丁目２)
Business Hours: 10:00-21:00 Daily
* Hakata Yatai Food Stalls (2 minute walk from the Canal City Hakata Mall)
Hakata Yatai Food Stalls – Yatai (屋台) are mobile food and drink stands many located along the Naka River behind Canal City Hakata. Open from 18:00 – 2:00am you can enjoy foods like the famous Hakata Ramen, a local noodle dish featuring relatively thin ramen noodles in a pork bone based soup (tonkotsu), grilled chicken skewers (yakitori), and hot pot (oden).
Address: 〒810-0801 Fukuoka, Hakata Ward, Nakasu, 8, 那珂川 通り (Google Maps) *Along the Naka River behind the Canal City Hakata Mall
HafH Fukuoka THE LIFE Hostel
Our group of 5, 2 adults and 3 kids, stayed in a family room at the Life Hostel Fukuoka, a short walk to the Canal City Mall and Yatai. Our room had a bunk bed and two double beds, free breakfast and wifi, clean and spacious open space and lobby. Great place for solo or family travelers. They also offer long-term accommodation.
Address: 8-13 Gionmachi, Hakataku, Hakata Ward, Fukuoka
Fukuoka Famous Foods
- Tonkotsu Ramen (Hakata Ramen) – milk-white soup made with pork bones and fine noodles;
- Motsunabe – is a boiled pot of motsu (offal) of cows and pigs filled with leek, cabbage, and bean sprouts and then flavored with soy sauce and miso.
- Karashi Mentaiko – pollack roe soaked in red peppers and sauce, is eaten together with rice or added to such dishes as pasta.
- Mizutaki – a one-pot dish of chicken and vegetables that are put in soup made from chicken bones and then eaten while dipping it in ponzu sauce (citrus soy sauce).
- Seafood – Seafood from the Genkai Sea, one of the world’s leading fishing grounds
Kyushu Road Trip with Kids –
Road Trip One Day Itinerary
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