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Self-Drive in Kyushu 11 Days

Kyushu is Japan's southernmost island is a dynamic landscape of active volcanoes, hot springs and fertile farmlands. Kyushu is epitomized by the words Energy, Fertility and Gateway, representing its natural energy and dynamic people, the rich soil that blesses the island with delicious food, and its history as a link between Japan and the world.

Drive in Kyushu is safe & ideal way to explore with many quiet country road, popular driving routes include the Nichinan coast road in Miyazaki, and along the Aso Panorama Line in Kumamoto.

Tour Highlights

Day 2 - Karatsu / Imari
Karatsu Castle

Karatsu Castle is said to have been completed in 1602 after 7 years by Toyotomi Hideyoshi's vassal Terazawa Hirotaka. The castle in its current form was completed in 1966. Also known as "Maizuru Castle", it is a popular place for cherry blossom and wisteria viewing. There is a souvenir shop on the 1st floor. Castle renovations began in 2017, and are still ongoing.

Niji No Matsubara

Kagami, Karatsu, Saga

Nijino Matsubara

Spanning a length of beach in view of the castle, Niji no Matsubara stretches along the coast with a fabled count of over one million hand planted pine trees. The man-made forest was created by Karatsu's first Lord of Agency, Terazawa Hirotaka as a wind breaker to preserve crops from wind damage. The forest is approximately 500 meters wide, and 4.5 kilometers long. Niji no Matsubara stands with Miho Matsubara and Kehi Matsubara as one of the three most precious pine forests in Japan, and has been designated as an important scenic spot in Japan. Niji no Matsubara was once featured on a television program dedicated to culturally significant landmarks that must be preserved in the 21st century.

While you're visiting, why not try to experience the seven hidden wonders within the forest? These wonders include silent cicadas and a lack of snakes!

Okawachiyama Village

Okawachi, Imari, Saga


Okawachiyama is a secluded pottery village just outside Imari. Often referred to as the Village of Secret Kilns, it was once an exclusive pottery hub producing porcelain ware for Japan's elite and for export.

Many of the original potters in the village were from Korea, brought over after a disastrous military campaign known as the Imjin War in the late 16th century. Their techniques are still reflected in the wares on offer.

Day 3 - Arita / Sasebo / Nagasaki
Ryuzan Aoki kiln

Ryuzan Aoki is well-known for his jet-black tenmoku tea bowls made from earthenware. Since his "Big Floral Plate with Cobalt Blue Underglaze" was accepted at the 10th Japan Fine Arts Exhibition (Nitten) in 1954, his works won one prize after the other and it is said that he reached the zenith of his career as writer for Nitten.

Sueyama Shrine

Sueyama Shrine enshrines the deities of Arita pottery, Emperor Oujin, followed in hierarchy by Nabeshima Naoshioge and Yi Sam-Pyeong. Founded in 1658, this shrine has received many things dedicated by people in Arita such as a shrine gate, statues of guardian lions, balustrade, lanterns, gateposts, drum and large plate all made with pottery and they are the traces of Arita's history from the Edo period until Today. Also, the bronze statues of guardian lion found here are 1.82 meters tall, which is the largest in Japan. The memorial monument of Yi Sam-pyeong was set up here in 1917 to celebrate the 300th anniversary of the foundation of Arita pottery. The celebration event dedicated to this founder of Arita pottery is held on the 4th of May every year.


There once was a porcelain stone mine here in Izumiyama. It was first discovered in 1616, the early Edo Period, by a Korean potter named Yi Sam Pyeong, which led to the production of Japan's first porcelain. At the quarry today hardly any productive operation is done but the appearance of the mountain formed after a long period of mining is breathtaking.

Saikai Bridege

Saikai Bridege is 360 meters long and 43 meters above the water. It was said to be the longest in the East when it was built in 1955. The New Saikai Bridge was opened next to Saikai Bridge in March 2006, and you can observe the whirlpools from directly overhead on the walking path under the bridge beam. Visitors can enjoy views of whirling waves and 1000 blossoming cherry trees from this bridge in April.

Nagasaki Peace Memorial Park

Nagasaki Piece Memorial Park was founded with the desire for world peace in mind. After the atomic bomb exploded, it was said that grass and trees would not grow on this spot for 75 years. However, this park is currently full of trees, flowers and art works donated by countries all over the world in support of the city's prayer for peace. The Peace Statue, a symbol of Nagasaki as a city of peace, was created by sculptor Seibo Kitamura, a Nagasaki native. The raised right hand pointing to the sky depicts the threat of the atomic bomb, and the left hand stretching horizontally symbolizes eternal world peace, while the slightly closed eyes express a prayer asking that the souls of the victims may find rest. A poem is carved into a memorial plate in front of the park's fountain, written by a child who suffered from thirst in the immediate aftermath of the bombing. The fountain, brimming with water, is an offering to all those who lost their strength before they could drink a single drop. Every year, a Peace Memorial Ceremony is conducted in front of this statue.

Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum

The Nagasaki Atomic Bomb Museum covers the history of this event in the accessible form of a story. It begins with the disastrous scene of the attack and includes the events leading up to the dropping of the atomic bomb, the reconstruction of Nagasaki up to the present day, the history of nuclear weapons development, and the hope for a peaceful world free of nuclear weapons.

Tour Details


Price: Adult (age 12+)
JPY 398,000 (the price basis is twin sharing)
Duration : 10 Nights 11 Days
Tour Start : Fukuoka
Tour End : Fukuoka
Tour Type : Self-Drive
Departure Date : All-year
  • Fukuoka
  • Imari/Arita
  • Nagasaki
  • Unzen
  • Kumamoto
  • Ibusuki
  • Sakurajima
  • Kirishima
  • Takachiho Gorge
  • Mt. Aso
  • Kurokawa Onsen
  • Yufuin/Kitsuki
  • Kunisaki Peninsula
  • Beppu
  • Fukuoka
  • 10 Nights accommodation
  • 10 Breakfasts and 5 Dinners
  • 9-Days Car hire (Standard class/unlimited km)
  • Day by day detailed itinerary and Route Map
Exclusions :
  • Any entrance fees (temple, shrine, museum etc)
  • Your own drink during the meals
  • International Air Ticket
  • Travel Insurance
  • Car hire excess insurance


Day 1
(Meals : None)
Welcome to Fukuoka
Welcome to Japan!
Your 11-Days exciting trip in Kyushu Island starts from Fukuoka.

Your hotel is 3-minute walk from JR Hakata Station Hakataguchi Exit. Please refer to your tour handbook for more information. Rest at the hotel and be ready to start your exciting tour tomorrow.

Hotel : Hakata Tokyu Rei Hotel or similar
Day 2
(Meals : B / D)
Hakata - Karatsu - Imari - Arita
Pick up rental car and drive Route 202 to old castle town, Karatsu.

You can have a lunch at Karatsu Burger (a famous food truck) at the middle of Niji no matsubara (4.5 kilo-meters long Pine trees forest) and, after lunch, visit Karatsu castle. Then journey continues to famous Pottery town, Imari and Arita

Hotel : Arita Huis or similar
Day 3
(Meals : B)
Arita - Nagasaki
Explore pottery studios and shops in Arita. You can visit Ryuzan Aoki kiln, elegant tea bowls, Sueyama Shrine, ancient ginkgo tree in Izumiyama and Izumiyama quarry.

Afternoon, drive to Nagasaki through Saikai bridge (visit piece memorial park, atomic bomb museum, and etc).

At night, you can drive to the top of Mt. Inasa and enjoy beautiful night view of Nagasaki City.

Hotel : Inasayama Kanko Hotel or similar
Day 4
(Meals : B)
Nagasaki - Unzen - Kumamoto
Today, you will visit, Japan's first national park, Unzen and explore Unzen Jigoku ("Unzen Hell"). In 1927, Unzen was ranked 1st in the mountain category for the New Eight Views of Japan, and in 1934 was designated as our country's first national park. Unzen's nature has been preciously preserved since days of old, and it is an encyclopedia of nature.

Drive to Shimabara port to take a ferry to Kumamoto in the late afternoon.

Hotel : Mitsui Garden Hotel Kumamoto or similar
Day 5
(Meals : B / D)
Kumamoto - Ibusuki
In the morning, visit Kumamaoto castle, Suizenji garden before long drive to Ibusuki (220km). You can stop at Senganen garden, Chiran bukeyashiki (old samurai house, Chiran Peace Museum) on the way.

Stay at Kyukamura Ibusuki and DO NOT FORGET to enjoy "Suna-Mushi-Buro" (sand steam bath).

Hotel : Kyukamura Ibusuki or similar
Day 6
(Meals : B)
Ibusuki - Kagoshima - Kirishima
In the morning, Visit Cape Nagasakibana where is the southernmost point of the Satsuma Peninsula. Explore Cape Nagasakibana, then drive to Kagoshima port and take a ferry to Sakurajima where is one of Japan's most active volcanoes and the symbol of Kagoshima.

You can visit "Yunohira Observatory" which is located just in front of the crater!

Hotel : Kirishima Kanko Hotel or similar
Day 7
(Meals : B / D)
Kirishima - Takachiho Gorge
Drive to Takachiho Gorge via Miyazaki, Just near the border of Miyazaki Prefecture, the romantic Takachiho Gorge winds its way through the sleepy town of Takachiho.

The gorge was formed from the pyroclastic flow of the Aso volcanos, when sudden cooling led to dramatic columnar formations and sheer cliffs that rise above the river between 80 to 100 meters high. The gorge is renowned as one of the most uniquely, beautiful scenic spots in Kyushu.

Hotel : Hotel Shikimi or similar
Day 8
(Meals : B / D)
Takachiho gorge - Mt Aso - Kurokawa Onsen
This morning, you will drive to Mt Aso, Japan's largest volcano, stopping at Shirakawa Suigen (river-head), Kusasenri Plateau before heading to Kurokawa onsen to stay. Enjoy wondrous sceneries and good soak in onsen (hot spring bath) to relax.

* If you buy a Onsen-Hopping Pass (JPY1,300), you can try any THREE different public outdoor baths in Kurokawa Onsen Area.

Hotel : Kurokawaso or similar
Day 9
(Meals : B / D)
Kurokawa onsen - Yufuin - Kitsuki - Kunisaki Peninsula
Today, you enjoy the journey along the Yamanami Highway to Yufuin which is one of Japan's greatest scenic routes to travel. Highway is a misnomer, as this is a delightful winding, country road.

Before entering Kunisaki peninsula, you can visit Yufuin (has a wealth of art museums, cafes and boutiques ) and Kitsuki (well-Known as Kyushu region's "little Kyoto").

The Kunisaki Peninsula, set in the hinterlands of northern Oita Prefecture, has a remarkable array of time-honored temples and shrines as well as thousands of statues of the Buddha in caves. Visit Fukiji temple where is the oldest wooden structure in Kyushu, Futagoji temple.

Hotel : Hotel Villa Kunisaki or similar
Day 10
(Meals : B)
Kunisaki - Beppu - Fukuoka
In the morning, visit Beppu, one of the most famous Onsen Resort in Japan. Enjoy Jigoku Meguri (Burning Hell) or visit Umitamago Aquarium/Takasakiyama Monkey Park.

After sightseeing, finally go back to Fukuoka by highway, return the car, stay at Hakata Tokyu Rei Hotel

Hotel : Hakata Tokyu Rei Hotel or similar
Day 11
(Meals : B)
Tour ends
Your pleasant and memorable Kyushu trip ends today.

Fly home with cherished memories or enjoy your extended stay in Japan.

Hotel : N/A


7 nights Western and 3 nights Japanese-style hotels.
Kyoto Mitsui Garden Hotel Shijo Hagi Ichirin Beppu Rex Hotel
※ Example images, actual hotels may vary (Click to enlarge).
DayCityHotel NameRoom Type
1&10 Fukuoka/
Hakata Tokyu Rei Hotel or similar Western-style
2 Arita/
Arita Huis or similar Western-style
3 Nagasaki/
Inasayama Kanko Hotel or similar Japanese-style
4 Kumamoto/
Mitsui Garden Hotel Kumamoto or similar Western-style
5 Ibusuki/
Kyukamura Ibusuki or similar Japanese-style
6 Kirishima/
Kirishima Kanko Hotel or similar Japanese-style
7 Takachiho/
Hotel Shikimi or similar Western-style
8 Kurokawa Onsen/
Kurokawaso or similar Japanese-style
9 Kunisaki/
Hotel Villa Kunisaki or similar Western-style


Contact Us

  • +61 2 9264 7384
  • info@japanpackage.com.au
  • c/o Books Kinokuniya,
    Level 2 The Galeries,
    500 George Street, Sydney,
    New South Wales, Australia, 2000
  • Mon-Fri: 10:00 - 18:00
    Sat: 12:00 - 16:00
    Sun, Public Holiday: close

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