Visit Kyushu
The Official Kyushu Travel Guide

Slow down in Itoshima

Travel Blog

Slow down in Itoshima

Beach Cafés and Unforgettable Sunsets

Slow down in Itoshima: Beach Cafés and Unforgettable Sunsets

None

At the westernmost part of Fukuoka Prefecture is a small piece of coast where time slows down. The Itoshima Peninsula is Fukuoka's little secret. It rewards those who discover it with beautiful beaches, exquisite food and peaceful sunsets. Here relaxation takes over people's everyday problems.

Explore the Coast at Your Own Pace

Your journey starts from Chikuzen-Maebaru Station, where you can choose how to explore the coast. The slower pace of Itoshima is enhanced by the absence of trains, so take your pick between bus, rental car, taxi, or bicycle.

None

Start exploring the coast and you'll come across a multitude of views. Fishermen huts, inviting sandy beaches, and rocky formations all create a charming landscape. Find your favorite spot and your own little piece of paradise.

None

Beaches are lined with small and hip cafés, often run by young people who have found their perfect place away from the rigors of Japanese society.

None

Grab a snack and sit by the beach. Take in the view. Enjoy the nostalgic atmosphere of the simple wooden tables lined up by the beach and smell the fresh sea breeze.

Fill Your Stomach at Itoshima's Oyster Huts

During the winter time, rows of temporary restaurants pop up by the shore next to the fishing ports. These are called kakigoya (oyster huts).

None

Delicious oysters are sold by the kilogram, and patrons grill them at their own table. The huts also serve other freshly caught seafood.

None

In a lively atmosphere, sit around the grill and enjoy a beer or two while the hot coals warm you up. Needless to say, the oysters are extremely fresh and taste so good that you can eat them without any condiment.

None

You don't have to look far to see where the oysters come from. Right behind the oyster huts, local fishermen chat the day away while sorting out the shellfish.

None

The simple life, the smiles of the locals. Being immersed in all this makes you want to stay here longer, to savor this lifestyle and become part of it.

A Little Visit to the Gods

Once your stomach is full, venture a little away from the sea and pay a visit to Sakurai Shrine. Established in 1632, this ancient Shinto shrine is immersed in a silent forest. Dusty and old in a grandiose way, it feels like it's there to protect the tranquility of Itoshima.

None

The silence is only interrupted by the sounds of the forest, and occasionally by dreamy ceremonial music played by the priest.

Watch the Sun Set over the Wedded Rocks

As the sunset draws closer, head to Futamigaura Bay, where the sun sinking below the horizon is a beautiful show.

None

Here are the meotoiwa, the “wedded rocks" tied together by a Shinto rope. In front of them is a white torii gate that marks the entrance to Sakurai Shrine. People start gathering here before sunset to watch the beach turn orange. You'll see them getting their cameras ready or simply holding their loved one's hand.

None

This little hidden paradise is a treat for travelers who are after a different and authentic experience. After witnessing the magic of Itoshima, you're sure to return to the fast-paced world with a more peaceful soul and a great story to share.

Laura Loss

Laura Loss

Laura is a Tokyo-based freelance writer, photographer and translator from northern Italy. She has a passion for craft beer, Japanese traditional instruments and discovering places that are off the beaten path.

Share this Page

You may also like