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Photo By: PIXTA/ Toshi K.
Region
Kyushu
Island
Kyushu
Largest City
Fukuoka
Population
5,015,666

Itoshima

Endless coastal views and a plethora of charming local cafes makes for a perfect day trip from the city.

By Heidi Sarol

Itoshima is a popular day trip destination among Fukuoka locals. Easily accessible from the city center, there’s tons to do for a day of exploring. Lined with local beachside cafes, historic shrines and scenic hiking trails, it’s a place for escaping the hustle and bustle of downtown. Set against a backdrop of deep blue waters and lush green mountains, it’s no wonder why this is one of Kyushu’s best-kept secrets.

Itoshima Beaches

Itoshima

Photo by: PIXTA/ Akey Sun, sand and swings

As one of the landmarks of Itoshima, Sakurai Futamigaura Beach is characterized by its iconic white torii gate (shrine gate) and meoto iwa (wedded rocks) by the shore. During low tide the torii gate is a popular photo spot among tourists and locals alike. Looking out at the meoto iwa (wedded rocks) bound together with a shimenawa (straw garland), the larger one is considered the husband and the smaller one, is the wife. Each year the shimenawa between the two rocks is replaced during springtime.

For surfing, head down the coast towards Keya Beach and let the waves guide you. Other notable beaches include Nogata Beach for sunsets and Akutaya Beach for swimming and other water sports. For a panoramic view of Akitaya Beach head up nearby Mount Tateishi.

Arguably one of the most popular photo spots in Itoshima is the Palm Tree Swing. The swing is situated right on the beach, facing the shoreline.  Visitors can find it beside Zauo Itoshima Hoten, one of the many seafood restaurants in the area.

Hiking and Waterfalls

Itoshima

Photo by: PIXTA/ Toshi K. Beautiful all throughout the year.

For hikers, a trip up Mount Hagane to visit Shiraito Falls is not to be missed. Over 20 meters in height, the cascading water is a sight to behold.

In June, watch over thousands of ajisai (hydrangeas) burst into full bloom. In the heat of summer, a popular activity around the falls is to cool off with somen-nagashi (flowing noodles). Catch the noodles as they race down the bamboo pipes and dip them into a flavorful sauce.

History buffs shouldn’t miss a hike to visit Raizan Sennyoji Temple on Mount Raizan. Over 1,300 years old, this Buddhist temple is famous for cherry blossoms and autumn foliage.

Things To Know

Getting around

You can rent bicycles at the Itoshima Tourism Association nearby JR Chikuzen-Maebaru station if you come by train or bus. Go early and be sure to bring the bikes back by 5 p.m. Rental fees start at ¥900 for two hours.

How To Get There

Address

By train

From JR Hakata station take the Kuko Line to Chikuzen-Maebaru station. It costs ¥580 and takes 45 minutes.

By bus

From JR Hakata and Tenjin stations, you can board an express bus to Itoshima. Get off at Maebara bus stop. It costs ¥650 and takes about 55 minutes.

By car

The easiest way to explore Itoshima is to rent a car from Fukuoka City. It takes 30 minutes using toll roads, fees vary.

Where To Stay

Settle Glocal Hotel Itoshima
  • 844-1 Tomari, Itoshima-shi, Fukuoka, 819-1111 Japan
  • ¥11,000 - ¥62,800
  • 4.54/5 (178 reviews)
  • 6.6 km
Itoshima Guest House & Backpackers Tomo
  • 3-5-24 Maebaruchuo, Itoshima-shi, Fukuoka, 819-1116 Japan
  • ¥6,120 - ¥6,120
  • 4.6/5 (24 reviews)
  • 9.1 km

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