Matsuyama and Dogo Onsen

Matsuyama (松山) is a popular tourist city in Shikoku, best known for Dogo Onsen (道後温泉). Considered to be the best hot spring town in the prefecture, it makes the city a great place to spend a day. Located on the north-west of Shikoku, it Matsuyama is also easily accessible from the main island (such as via cheapContinue reading “Matsuyama and Dogo Onsen”

Kochi

Kochi (高知) is a large city in southern Shikoku containing the usual attractions of shrines and a castle, but with a few very unique, and often shocking, tourist spots such as the dog fighting culture. Budget travel tips Make sure you bring and show your passport at the Tourist Information Center outside Kochi station whenContinue reading “Kochi”

Miyazaki

Miyasaki (宮崎), located in south eastern Kyushu, is a prefecture well known across the country for a stunning coastline and moderate climate. While it has seen better days in terms of tourist income, the prefecture is making a real effort to get visitors back, with generous discounts and transportation deals. The area has both great shrinesContinue reading “Miyazaki”

Ibusuki

Ibusuki (指宿) is a great day-trip location from Kagoshima, most famous for hot sand baths. It is a great location for flower viewing and coastline hot springs. It is also a good spot to take the ferry to Yakushima. Budget travel tips When you arrive, head into the Tourist Information Center in the station. TheyContinue reading “Ibusuki”

Yakushima

Yakushima (屋久島) is a World Heritage listed subtropical island in southern Kyushu. It is usually accessed from Kagoshima and is a great way for tourists to get away from the bustling and busy streets of most Japanese cities. Budget travel tips Buses go every hour our so, but be sure to check your bus timesContinue reading “Yakushima”

Yufuin

Yufuin (由布院) is Beppu’s little sister, a smaller and quieter hot spring town with a bit more class and sophistication. While Yufuin has many tourists these days, the long shopping district full of interesting foods and stunning country side stop it from feeling like a tourist trap (which some say of Beppu!). Full of cheapContinue reading “Yufuin”

San’in-Okayama Area Pass

The JR San’in-Okayama Area Pass allows for unlimited use of JR local, rapid and express trains in the northern Chugoku area for 4 consecutive days. It includes popular tourist spots such as Okayama, Kurashiki, Tottori and Matsue, as well as access to near Izumo-Taisha. What does it cost? Bought before entering Japan: Adults 4500 yen (about $45), ChildrenContinue reading “San’in-Okayama Area Pass”

Top cheap places to go around Fuji

What place do you think when you hear word of ‘Fuji’? Most people definitely will answer Mount Fuji as it’s also known as great magnificent one of a kind mountain, a pride symbol of Japan. But there are actually more great spots to explore around beside Mount Fuji itself. So, let’s check out these must visitContinue reading “Top cheap places to go around Fuji”

Top Ten Free Activities In Kyoto

By Tom Fay, author of Must-See Japan (blog: http://www.thomasfay.com) The undoubted culture capital of Japan, Kyoto is always high on the agenda for most visitors to the country. But with so many temples, shrines, gardens, historic buildings and other attractions dotted around Kyoto’s varied and distinctive districts, it can be difficult to decide where toContinue reading “Top Ten Free Activities In Kyoto”

Shimanami Kaido – cycle across Japan’s forgotten islands

The Shimanami Kaido (しまなみ海道) is an increasingly popular, but still relatively quiet cycling route across the islands connecting the Chugoku region near Hiroshima and Shikoku. The 60 kilometre route has been designed for cyclists in mind and the temperate climates helps to make the ride enjoyable and not too physically tough. Along the way thereContinue reading “Shimanami Kaido – cycle across Japan’s forgotten islands”