Kyushu, in southern Japan, has some excellent sakura (cherry blossoms) spots. They may be just as busy as those up north, but they make for a good change of scene. The times are about the same as in Tokyo and Kyoto. For forecasts check out the Super Cheap Japan sakura (cherry blossoms) guide. Fukuoka is the best place to go for budget travellers who want to do many sakura spots as cheaply as possible, with all its parks and a castle.
Fukuoka Castle and Maizuru Park
Don’t miss out on the Fukuoka Castle Cherry Blossom Festival, which starts from 26th March, with a light show in the evening from 6 PM. The castle grounds are also lovely for an afternoon stroll.
Kamado Shrine (Dazaifu City)
Just outside the big city, this top shrine is well worth the trip with its 200 plus sakura trees.
Nishi Park (Nishi Koen)
Viewed as one of Japan’s best cherry blossom spots by locals, this park has over 1000 sakura trees, a shrine and large areas for parking your blue mat and enjoying a good picnic!
Access: Take the Fukuoka subway from Tenjin to Ohorikoen station (3 mins, 200 yen), then walk 10-15 mins north. You could also walk from Fukuoka Castle.
With a spectacular view over the city of Fukuoka and Hakata Bay, this is an awesome shrine to make a short trip to. Hundreds of cherry blossom trees line the stone approach to the shrine as well as around the shrine complex.
Access: Take the Fukuoka subway from Tenjin to Meinohama station (13 mins, 300 yen), then walk 10 mins east.