The island of Kyushu is a subtropical mix of Japanese tradition, rural culture and vibrant city life. It’s one of Japan’s four main islands, lying in the far south of the country, around a six-hour train from Tokyo. Few travellers make the journey down from the capital though, which means Kyushu still retains its traditional charm, where you can explore the temples, mountains and valleys with very few other travellers in sight.
Read on for our full travel guide to the region
If you want to get close to nature, Ikenoyama Sou is home to a camping ground, surrounding a natural lake known as Aso Pond. You can sleep in a small hut here, with both an indoor and outdoor hot spring bath. Relax in the steaming water while gazing out over the mountains. Learn more
Don’t miss a chance to try a local experience called ‘nagashi somen’, where somen noodles glide down a shoot in cold water. As the noodles whizz past, you use your chopsticks to try and pluck out as many as you can before they fall into the waiting basket at the bottom. Learn more
At the Fukuoka City Tourist Information Centre, you can buy a ‘yatai ticket’ for JPY1,000 (£6). The ticket can be used at one of nine yatai food stalls to have a drink and a local dish. It’s an easy way to experience yatai food culture if you’re worried about the language barrier. Learn more
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