First Time in Japan: Northern Kyushu Itinerary, Expenses and Travel Tips (From Hakata in Fukuoka)

For my first trip to Japan, we were initially hoping for Tokyo but then since it was easier to buy tickets to Fukuoka on a Cebu Pacific Air seat sale, we went to Fukuoka instead. Below is the itinerary of our seven days stay in Hakata, Fukuoka. I have also embedded a Google Map just so you'd have an idea on where the places are located.


I saw cheaper Fukuoka itineraries but they only stayed in Hakata area during their tour. Huis Ten Bosch is the main reason why we chose FUK and since we bought the JR Pass ticket then exploring other parts of Northern Kyushu is the most obvious thing to do even if that meant spending more. 

[Klook Link] Purchase 3/5 Day JR All/North/South Kyushu Pass (Japan Pick Up) Tickets: here.


DAY 1:
We just checked in our hotel, ate dinner and we called it a night around 11 PM.

DAY 2: (Yufuin, Oita)

DAY 3: (Sasebo)
1. Huis Ten Bosch
Link: Morning
Link: Night

DAY 4: (Dazaifu, Nagasaki)
4. Mount Inasayama
Link: Ropeway

DAY 5: (Fukuoka)

DAY 6: (Fukuoka)

DAY 7:

Notice that we didn't include a lot of items in our itinerary since we wanted our days to be chill and more room for surprises. Also, these places were not near each other so we had to allot travel time. We are usually not strict with our schedule - we know our itinerary and which trains to take but the time changes depending on the circumstances since we were dependent on the train schedule. Also, this is not the most affordable tour since we had to pay entrance fees for some places and they were definitely not cheap. So, hindi ako magbibigay ng itinerary na 10k lang e nalibot mo na buong Northern Kyushu. Overtime, you'd find a travel style that suits you more and this itinerary was what we deemed best for a better value and better experience. 


Travel Tips:

I have actually posted the arrival and departure details before but since I've finished posting all the articles related to our Fukuoka travel, I have decided to compose a more detailed one. 

TIP: For people availing the JR Pass, know the schedule of the trains you're taking. This way, you'd be able to be more efficient in planning routes. 

DAY 2: (Yufuin, Oita)

Yufuin Floral Village, Japan

Kinrin Lake

Hells of Beppu

TIP: The train that goes to Yufuin is an all-reserved train that easily gets sold-out. What we did was we decided to go to the farther place first which is the Hells of Beppu and we rode a bus to Yufuin. Trains back to Hakata Station were still all-reserved but it was easier to get tickets on the spot. Also, there are a lot of food establishments you can eat at in Yufuin. We enjoyed our food trip there, our favorite were the cheesecake and matcha gelato both of which we've researched about beforehand. <3

DAY 3: (Sasebo)

1. Huis Ten BoschLink: Morning

Link: Night

TIP: Again, make sure to take train schedules in mind and reserve tickets if you can. We spent the whole day walking around 'cause this European Theme Park is soooooooo huge. We weren't able to try it but the entrance to the VR rides are ticket-inclusive. Should you want to use the rides, fall in line in the morning 'cause the queue gets longer in the afternoon. What we did was we walked around, rested and ate late lunch outside the park, went back and walked around again. Parang dalawang beses kami nagpunta - isa sa umaga, isa sa gabi. Why did we stay for the entire day? aside from making sure we got our money's worth, the park has a different feel to it in daytime and in night time. Still the highlight of Fukuoka 2019 especially the fields of tulips. <3

DAY 4: (Dazaifu, Nagasaki)

Dazaifu Tenmangu Shrine

4. Mount Inasayama
Link: Ropeway

TIP: There are a lot of places that can be visited in Nagasaki so you may spend the entire day there. However, if you'll be following this itinerary, you'd have to be at the Shrine at around 3 PM (the latest) because establishments near it close early. 

DAY 5: (Fukuoka)

Baby Blue Eyes Umininakamichi Park

Ichiran Ramen, Fukuoka

Fukuoka Tower

TIP: The Seaside Park is huge!!! No matter how small it looks like in the map, it is huge! If you don't plan on staying there for a long time though, you can add it on a day when you're JR pass is still active. That way, you won't have to pay an additional fee for the train ride going there. For Fukuoka Tower, try to go there before sunset just so you'd have time to explore the nearby beach as well before going up to the viewing deck.

DAY 6: (Fukuoka)

TIP:  Riding the bus can be a little bit expensive but it's inevitable so make sure you're riding the right one. Availing the unlimited subway pass can be more economical if you're planning your routes near the stations. Also, renting bicycles for the entire day can be an option especially if you're travelling during Spring or Autumn. 

DAY 7:

Uobei Sushi

Royce in Fukuoka Airport

TIP:  You can take a train or a bus when going back to the airport. It didn't take a lot of time but you'd have to surrender all the receipts or the tax refund receipts of all your purchases just after the immigration counter. All the receipts are taped on the pages of your passport and they will be the one to remove them. Also, it doesn't matter if you don't find Royce Chocolates in Hakata because there's one inside the airport. 


Below are the fixed expenses we had...

Pre-departure: P 10,770.00
  1. Airfare: P 4,000
  2. Travel Tax - P 1,620
  3. Visa Processing Fee - P 950
  4. JR Pass - P 3,942 at Klook [Purchase Tickets Here]
  5. Fukuoka Tower - P 258 at Klook [Purchase Tickets Here]

Expenses in Fukuoka: 22,522 Yen around 10,584

  1. Hostel -  11,892 (we've reserved the rooms on sale but it was pay cash upon arrival)
  2. Sea Hells Entrance Fee - 400
  3. Bus to Beppu Hells - 340
  4. Bus from Beppu to Yufuin - 940*
  5. Huis Ten  Bosch - 7,000 [Purchase Klook Tickets Here]
  6. Nagasaki Ropeway - 1,230
  7. Fukuoka Subway Pass - 720 [Purchase Klook Tickets Here]
*spent 940 'cause we didn't want to go back to the JR train station so we rode a bus from the Hells straight to Yufuin

Total for Fixed Expenses: P 21,354

Our total for a week in Northern Kyushu was around P 30,000. We were really anxious with regards to the expenses for this trip because Japan is known as an expensive country and it didn't disappoint -ang mahal talaga. However, two things that made the entire cost significantly lower were our airfare and accommodation.

airplane tickets - booked November
accommodation - booked early December (no payment yet)
pocket money - December, January, February (dito kami nagpa-palit ng Yen paunti-unti per month)
Visa processing - February (tigas ng mukha mag-asikaso ng kung ano-ano nang wala pang visa... hahaha! madaming kaba pero mas malaking tiwala ang kinailangan)
travel dates - March

Above is how we distributed the expenses in a span of five months para hindi masyado mabigat... :))) but take note that we already planned the trip March of last year pa after Macau so kinda like a one year in the making trip pa rin. 

Looking forward to a P 30,000 Tokyo din!! BAKA NAMAN HAHAHAHA. 

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