Japan Drive Route Guide

Area
Kyushu
Travel Period
4D3N
Route
710
Overview
Start
Fukuoka
Goal
Fukuoka
Way
return_trip
Travel Pace
busy
Distance
620 km
Rank
Highway fee
¥ 5,000
About this route

It is a route around the northern Kyushu via Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki, Yufuin/Beppu and Aso. On day 1, you can visit unique shrines and temple like "Nanzoin Big Buddha" and "Miyajidake Shrine". Seafood at Shimonoseki is really fresh. Day2, after seeing ”Hiraodaira Karst Plateau" panolamic view, you can touch some traditional Japanese culture at "Kitsuki Castle Town". You can enjoy sorking Onsen at night at either Yufuin or Beppu where is one of the most famous Onsen town in Japan. On day 3, after having nice lunch at "Kurokawa Onsen town", you can see the view of the world's most magnificent caldera and Mt.Aso from "Daikanbo Observatory". You can stay bottom of Mt.Aso at night.It is recommended to stop by Kumamoto city and eat eel runch at Yanagawa before going back to Fukuoka.
In spring, you can enjoy the wonderful verry blossoms and rape blossoms at "Oita river" in Yufuin. In autumn,"Yabakei Gorge" and "Kokonoe Suspension Bridge" are the best place to see coloured leaves.

Fukuoka

rental_car

Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki

sightseeing

Miyajidake Shrine

sightseeing

Kanmonkyo Bridge

sightseeing

Karato Market

sightseeing

Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki

sightseeing

Yufuin/Beppu

sightseeing

Hon Yabakei Gorge & Aonodomon

sightseeing

Usa Jingu Shrine

sightseeing

Kumano Magaibutsu Buddha

sightseeing

Yufuin/Beppu

sightseeing

Aso

public_facility

Kokonoe Suspension Bridge

sightseeing

Kurokawa Onsen town

sightseeing

Daikanbo Observatory

sightseeing

Aso

public_facility

Fukuoka

rental_car

Kumamoto Castle

sightseeing

Suizenji Park

sightseeing

Yanagawa Canal Cruise

sightseeing
Day. 1Fukuoka to Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki

This day will head from Fukuoka to Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki aera. Mileage is about 120㎞ only and you can travel leisurely.
The first destination can be either "Nanzoin Big Buddha(南蔵院)" or "Miyajidake Shrine(宮地嶽神社)" where is famous for panoramic scenery with straight road extending to the sea. The highlights of the day are the Shimonoseki and Mojiko Port is located across the Kanmon Strait. It is recommended to have "Grilled Curry" at Mojiko or "Puffer fish" at Shimonoseki.
"Mojiko Port Retro Area(門司港レトロ)” is famous for it's beautiful old europiean-style buildings include "Old Moji Mitsui Club" where Einstein loved to stay. Shimonoseki is famous for "Karato Market(唐戸市場)" and "Kamon Wharf(カモンワーフ)".
Both Mojiko side and Shimonoseki side have observatory deck and the panoramic Kanmon Strait view with Kanmon Bridge is must-see.
If you have time in the night, to visit "Mt.Sarakurayama Observatory(皿倉山展望台)" is good idea. Amazing night view of Kitakyushu town is waiting for you.

Rent a car at Fukuoka

Rental car rental and return at Fukuoka
All Kyushu driving routes we providing start from Fukuoka.
Below 3 branchs is the most recommended.
①Fukuoka Airport International Terminal Branch : For travelers who take international flight.
②Fukuoka Airport No.1 Branch (Domestic Terminal) : For travelers who take domestic flight.
③Hakata Station Hakata Exit Branch : For travelers who stay Fukuoka before or after driving trip and who take Shinkansen(Bullet train).

Stay at Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki

You will stay either Kitakyushu(北九州) or Shimonoseki(下関) city on this day. The two cities are located across the Kanmon Strait and need to cross the Kanmon Bridge by car. Most ofthe accommodations in these cityes are not Ryokans but western style hotels.
If you stay Kitakyushu city, around Kokura station(小倉駅) is recommended. There are many 3-4 star hotels and convenient to have dinner due to many restaurants.
If you stay Shimonoseki city, there are some 5 star hotels with panoramic view and recommended if your budget allows. In that case, it is better to book with dinner and they may provice puffer fish dinner which is their speciality.
About breakfast, Karato Market(唐戸市場) in Shimonoseki side opens from early morning and it is also good idea to book room only and have a breakfast at the markt.

Day. 2Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki to Yufuin/Beppu

This day will head from Kitakyushu/Shimonoseki to Yufuin/Beppu a nationally famous hot spring resort. Mileage is about 160㎞ and not tough.
First destination should be "Hiraodai(平尾台)" very panoramic karst plateau.
Then let's move to the "Usa Jingu Shrine(宇佐神宮)" which is founded AD725. We recommend you to take highway from Hiraodai to Usa Jingu Shrine due to no sightseeing spots. Usa area is known as the land of "Karaage(Japanese fried chicken)" originated in Japan and recommended to have it as lunch. Our daily driving map will guide you nice shop.
Highlight "Beppu Jigoku Hells(別府地獄めぐり)" is highly recommended but is closed at 17:00. If you stay in Yufuin or Beppu continuously or will return back to Fukuoka tomorrow, it would be good visit Beppu on the next day.
In addition, we recommend you different place at cherry blossom period in spring and autumn coloured leaves period with our daily driving map. It is really worth to see and please priority there.

Stay at Yufuin/Beppu

You will stay either Yufuin(=Yufu City(由布院)) or Beppu(別府) on this day. Two cities are about 20 km away and about 30min by car. Both cities are very famous for Onsen and most of accommodations are Japanese Ryokan with Onsen. Some western style hotels there also have Onsen facilities too.
Most of accommodations in Yufuin are 4-5 star Ryokans. They will provide Onsen and nice Japanese Kaiseki style dinners. Restaurants and shops in the city close evening and you must book plan with dinner and breakfast.
Beppu has many accommodations from 3-5 star. If you book nice accommodation, it is also better to book plan with dinner and breakfast. There are many reasonable hotels around Beppu station and you can book without meals because of many local restaurants. But some hotels don't have own parking and they may charge additional parking fee.

Day. 3Yufuin/Beppu to Aso

This day will head from Yufuin/Beppu to Aso. Mileage is 140㎞ only. However, this day has many attractions and it is recommended to start 8:00~9:00 if you don't lile huried travel.
The first destination is "Kokonoe Suspension Bridge(九重夢大吊橋)". In particular, you can see wonderful colored leaves in the Autumn. Then you can stop by farm which provide fresh yogurt drinks and beautiful wetland which has 1 - 2.5km walking trails. "Kurokawa Onsen town(黒川温泉)" is good place to have lunch. Our daily driving map will let you know nice recommended restaurants there.
The biggest highlight on this day is driving along the Aso Sky Line from "Skyline observatory" to "Daikanbo Observatory(大観峰)". Driving on outer rim of a Aso caldera will be your lifetime unforgettable memory. If you have time, let's go to "Kusasenri(草千里)". Breathtaking panoramic grass plains are waiting for you.
Aso area where you stay this day is countryside and you had better to eat dinner at your inn. Then please control your schedule to reach your inn by 18 around o'clock.

Stay at Aso

You will stay Aso(阿蘇) area on this day. Accommodations are located around Mt.Aso(阿蘇山) the symbol of this area. You can choose prefer type of accommodations from variety of options like fine Ryokan with Onsen, reasonable western style hotels and so on.
Aso area is consider as countryside. Restaurants, shops and convenience stores are very limited and difficult to find place to have dinner and breakfast. Don't forget to book plan with dinner and breakfast. Most of accommodations don't charge parking fee.

Day. 4Aso to Fukuoka

This day will go back to Fukuoka from Aso. Because of long mileage 200km and many sightseeing spots, it is recommended to start 8:00~9:00 if you don't lile huried travel.
If you haven't visit "Kusasenri(草千里)" in Mt.Aso, let's go there first. Breathtaking panoramic grass plains are waiting for you. Then, let's move to Kumamoto city.
The symbol of the city ”Kumamoto castle(熊本城)” is under reconstruction from the damage of the earthquake. It may be nicer to visit sonderful Japanese garden "Suizenji Jojuen Garden(水前寺成趣園)". Next destination is Yanagawa town. "Ohana Shotoen(御花松涛園)" is old house and amazing Japanese garden which was built about 300 years ago.
Recommended lunch on this day are Kumamoto Ramen, traditional grilled eel and cheap and good local Udon noodle. We will let you know all the restaurants with daily driving map.
"Yame Chuo Tea Gaden(八女中央大茶園)" is highly recommended to visit. It is the secret spot where can be reach by car only and you will be amazed due to panolamic scenery covered with green tea trees. If you would like to enjoy shopping before going back to your country, you can stop at "Tosu Premium Outlets(鳥栖プレミアムアウトレット)".
There are some traffic jam adound Fukuoka and it takes time to filling up gas and return your car too. If you don't stay Fukuoka and take flight on this day, please reach rental car shop at least 3 hours before the flight.

Return a car at Fukuoka

Rental car rental and return at Fukuoka
All Kyushu driving routes we providing start from Fukuoka.
Below 3 branchs is the most recommended.
①Fukuoka Airport International Terminal Branch : For travelers who take international flight.
②Fukuoka Airport No.1 Branch (Domestic Terminal) : For travelers who take domestic flight.
③Hakata Station Hakata Exit Branch : For travelers who stay Fukuoka before or after driving trip and who take Shinkansen(Bullet train).

Check Other 4D3N Kyushu Route

Route numberStart cityGoal cityWayTravel PaceDistanceRankHighway feeDetail
709FukuokaFukuokareturn_triprelaxing600 km¥ 1,500check
711FukuokaFukuokareturn_tripnormal650 km¥ 1,500check
712FukuokaFukuokareturn_tripbusy620 km¥ 5,200check
Sorry, we provide our service for Kyushu and Okinawa only. Other areas are under development.