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Best of Kyushu Japan self-drive tour

17 days from CAD12,975pp

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Tour highlights

  • Explore the beautiful volcanic mountains and dramatic Mount Aso caldera of Aso-Kuju National Park.

  • Take a boat ride down the striking Takachiho Gorge, amid tumbling waterfalls and picturesque mountain cherry trees.

  • Visit the hot springs of Kurokawa to stay in a traditional inn.

  • Spend time in the Atomic Bomb Museum and Peace Park of Nagasaki.

  • Explore the picturesque gardens and samurai residences of Chiran.

17 days from CAD12,975pp

Price includes:

  • Fully insured vehicle rental
  • All accommodations
  • 24-hour support while you travel
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Travel that's shaped around you

We know that travel has the most meaning when it's created individually for you. Our specialists will only start designing your trip once they understand exactly what you want it to be. So, consider this idea simply as inspiration for your own experience.

Itinerary idea in detail

Ask us if you would also like us to arrange your international flights at our preferred rates.

  • Once arrived into Tokyo, transfer directly to your flight to Fukuoka. Once in Fukuoka you will be met at the airport by a representative to guide you through arrivals. They will then show you to the waiting transfer to your hotel. Spend the rest of the day relaxing after your long flight. One recommendation would be to stay local and enjoy 'yatai' or street food in and around Canal City in Hakata.

  • Spend the morning exploring the vibrant city of Fukuoka. The canals running through the city give a unique flavor. In the evening head out for a street food tour for a true introduction to Kyushu cuisine.

  • Pick up your hire car today and drive to the onsen village of Kurokawa and spend the rest of the day at leisure relaxing in the sumptuous hot springs.

  • There are some nice walks to be done or make use of your hire car to explore more of the area. You can also take advantage of a day pass to visit other hot springs in the village.

  • Travel south to sheer limestone cliffs of Takachiho Gorge. Once freshened up, perhaps hire a rowing boat and drift gently along the river through waterfalls and cliff faces.

  • Make the drive down south to the small coastal town of Ibusuki famous for the hot sand bathing on offer in the area.

  • From Ibusuki head up to the larger city of Kagoshima, not before stopping off in the small town of Chiran to see the Kamikaze museum and samurai residences.

  • Spend a day in the city of Kagoshima. The most prominent feature of Kagoshima is the location in the shadow of the enormous Sakurajima volcano. The active volcano often spews ash over the city and leaves the residents with the almost daily task of sweeping ash from their driveways.

  • Take a short drive to the Kirishima National Park, a fantastic destination for hikers of all levels.

  • At leisure in the Kirishima National Park to enjoy some of the many walking trails, and soak up the beautifully verdant green of this part of Kyushu.

  • Return to Kagoshima, drop off your hire car and board the train to Kumamoto and spend the rest of the day at leisure. Our recommendation for the afternoon is to visit Kumamoto Castle and its nearby Suizenji gardens.

  • A short drive to the port to board the car ferry over to Unzen Peninsula from where you climb the mountain via the sulfuric bubbling pools at the top of Mount Unzen. After, head back down the mountain over to Nagasaki Bay and the city itself.

  • At leisure in Nagasaki. It's worth visiting the small yet quite harrowing peace museum but more of what Nagasaki has to offer is in town such as Glover Garden on which 'Madame Butterfly' was based and Dejima Wharf at sunset.

  • At leisure to explore 'Gunkanjima' or 'Battleship Island' infamous for its eerily vacant and uninhabited atmosphere often used in movies.

  • Continue by train to Hakata, a lovely journey along the coast and through paddy fields. Once in Fukuoka, enjoy the remainder of your evening in this compact but buzzy modern city.

  • Take the easy subway line to the airport and board your flight back to Tokyo for a final night in the capital.

  • Take the airport shuttle bus to the airport and board your return flight.

Accommodation options

While the itinerary price reflects the suggested accommodation, Audley trips are 100% tailor-made, and a specialist can help you select the option best suited to your tastes and budget.

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Contact a Japan specialist

The specialist who designs your trip to Japan will have explored the country many times and, in some cases, lived there. Their first-hand knowledge gives us the belief that no other travel company can match our expertise in helping you plan your trip.

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When to go

Jan Feb Mar Apr May Jun Jul Aug Sep Oct Nov Dec
July is one of the best times to visit
Place Daily max temperature (°C) Monthly rainfall (mm)
Tokyo
 
Fukuoka
 
Kurokawa
 
Kagoshima
 
Kirishima National Park
 
Kumamoto
 
Nagasaki
 

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