Kyūshū – general information –
The island of Kyūshū (九州, nine provinces), the southernmost of the four large islands that make up Japan, is attracting more and more visitors. The prefectures of Kyūshū (which are 7, despite the name) are: Fukuoka, Ōita, Saga, Nagasaki, Kumamoto, Miyazaki and Kagoshima.
Kyūshū can be considered a small country apart, with a wide variety of natural environments, its cities and a long history that has made it a bridge between the civilizations of East Asia and the ancient kingdoms of Japan. Through Kyūshū, tea, Buddhism and Chinese writing have arrived in Japan.
Moreover, thanks to the position of the island, close to the merchant routes of the modern age, this was the gateway to the western sailors, first of all the Portuguese and the Dutch. The former have left behind Christian churches and elements, while the latter, more dedicated to trade and profit, have been more tolerated as colonizers and, in fact, have stimulated the openness and interest of the Japanese in the Edo period to Western world, encouraging the modernization of the country.
Kyūshū, due to its low latitude, boasts a milder climate than the rest of Japan, with hot and muggy summers, but mitigated by the presence of wonderful beaches and islands (in particular, the Amami Islands which, being near Okinawa, we treat on this page ), as well as the early flowering of the cherry trees and, finally, the thermal springs, such as those of Beppu, Yufuin and Takeo.
When to visit Kyūshū
Basically, the climate of Kyūshū does not differ too much from that of Japan. Heavy snowfall can occur in the winter on the northern side (Fukuoka, Kitakyūshū). Spring is mild, followed by the rainy season, usually during the month of June, which then leaves room for a long, hot and humid summer. Finally, autumn comes with a little delay, but still bringing its colors and the delicious fruits of the summer crops.
How to get here
Click here to find out how to get to Kyūshū and how to get around within it.