Travel to Kyushu Okinawa Region
Kyushu region is Japan's third largest island, includes Fukuoka, Saga, Nagasaki, Oita, Kumamoto, Miyazaki and Kagoshima prefectures. Kyushu is internationally famous for its Tonkotsu(porky) ramen, rejuvenating hot springs, dramatic mountains, peaceful beaches and outgoing people. While the startup hub of Fukuoka bubbles with international attention, the volcanic terrain to the south continues to rumble and smoke. The seismic activity has created a craggy wonderland of eight steaming hot spring areas, known collectively as Beppu Onsen, as well as soaring peaks to hike, such as Mt. Karakuni in the Kirishima mountain range. Offering a taste of both cutting-edge modernity and slow-paced living, Japan's southern island is best explored at a leisurely pace. Head south to relax on an island bursting with spectacular nature, culture and cuisine.
Although each Japanese prefecture is unique in its own way, tropical Okinawa prefecture is by far the most distinct, almost like a different country. And that assessment is true to a certain extent; Okinawa, known then as the Ryukyu Kingdom, was independent from Japan until 1879, and was part of US territory from 1945 to 1972. As a result, the culture, food, and even the language (although many do speak standard Japanese) differ vastly from those of any other region. On Okinawa Island, places of note are the Chura-umi Aquarium, one of the largest aquariums in the world and home to the whale shark, as well as ancient Ryukyu castle ruins, most notably Shuri-jo. Buy your souvenirs at Kokusai-dori, Okinawa’s main street. Off the main island, the Yaeyama and Miyako Islands have Japan’s most pristine beaches, while retaining traditional Okinawan culture.
The Nakamura House Interior