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Largest City


Smoke on the water

Between the smoking crater of Mount Aso in the east and the isolated islands of Amakusa in the west, Kumamoto has plenty to keep you enthralled.

Kumamoto Prefecture’s diverse attractions are best explored with a car. From hiking around active volcanic peaks to relaxing at traditional baths at Kurokawa Onsen, there remains much to be explored in the prefecture, which boasts some of the best waters in Japan for immune-boosting “forest bathing.”

Kumamoto City

Kumamoto Castle

One of the most popular cherry blossom viewing spots in the city.

As the prefectural capital, Kumamoto City acts as an excellent base for exploring the region. 

Start your adventure with a visit to Kumamoto Castle; its vast grounds are also a popular cherry blossom viewing spot in spring. The castle was closed after being badly damaged during a 2016 earthquake but will reopen by the end of April 2021.

Mount Aso 

Mount Aso

Hike around Mt. Aso for spectacular views of the surrounding landscape.

An hour to the east from Kumamoto city, Mount Aso is the largest active caldera globally, spanning over 100 kilometers with rural villages and rice fields in between. Eruptions are fairly regular, but you can climb to the peak and peer into the smoking crater when conditions are safe. Check the volcanic updates before you go!

Kurokawa Onsen

Kurokawa Onsen

Evening illumination at Kurokawa Onsen

Kurokawa Onsen is a picturesque hot spring town packed full of traditional ryokan (inns) with private baths as well as outdoor public baths that you can tour with a discounted pass.

Kikuchi Valley is famous as one of Japan’s 44 “forest bathing” sites reputed to have healing powers. Whatever the health benefits, both settings are like something out of a dream.

Start planning your trip to Kumamoto with the locations below.


Hirauchi Kaichu Onsen

Mixed Gender Onsen??

Find out where you can bathe with the opposite sex at these traditional hot springs in Kumamoto and beyond.


Places to visit

Nabegataki Falls

Nabegataki Falls

Lying close to the border of Kumamoto and Oita Prefectures and not too far from Fukuoka City, Naebegataki makes for a great day trip option.

Suizenji Jojuen Garden

Suizenji Jojuen Garden

A lovely example of a Japanese strolling garden, a genre popularized in the Edo period.

Kumamoto Castle

Kumamoto's heart.

Tsuetate Onsen

Tucked deep in Kumamoto’s valley is an onsen town where time has stood still.

Meoto Falls

Where two waterfalls become one.

Lake at the active volcano - Mount Aso at Kumamoto, Japan

Mount Aso

The largest active volcano in Japan is as unmissable as you'd expect.

Traditional onsen village, Kurokawa, Kumamoto Prefecture, Kyushu, Japan

Kurokawa Onsen

Hop on a bath tour in your traditional onsen get-up.

Laputa Road (Laputa-no-michi)

Drive your own Castle in the Sky on this spectacular stretch of mountain road.

Takamori Senbonzakura (Sakura Road)

A thousand recommendations for this local sakura spot.

Other Destinations in Kyushu

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Traditional, tropical, mystical, and magical; Kagoshima is nothing short of extraordinary.


The mountains and coasts of Miyazaki are calling.


Looking out east, Nagasaki Prefecture has long been the gateway between the outside world and Japan.

Beppu, in Oita prefecture, Japan's onsen town


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Shisa and Okinawa


Discover white sandy beaches, crystal blue waters, wild jungles, and centuries of unique native traditions.


Kyushu's smallest prefecture is big on history, culture and natural beauty.

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