Back to Japan

After an amazing holiday in Japan with my good friend Oana last year, I didn’t think I’d be going back for a long time. Then my sister Grace got a job teaching in Fukuoka for a year, so there was an excuse for a family holiday! I’ve more or less been left entirely to my own devices to plan two weeks travelling around Japan with my mum and sister. So, here’s a sneak peek at where we’ll be going. Needless to say, I’ll be blogging about our travels on my return.

I’ll try to tweet a Japan photo a day, so follow me @SengokuSophie if you aren’t already!

All photos used in this blog belong to Japan Guide, my bible for holiday planning.


Mum and I land in Osaka and meet up with Grace. I’ve been to Osaka before and loved it – Namba’s great for people (and host) watching and amazing food, so I’m looking forward to showing the fam round. I also plan to make several stops to the arcades for the taiko drum games.


Mum and Grace haven’t been to Nara before, so we’ll be having a day trip here from Osaka. I might need to act as hungry deer watchperson.


So begins the journey south to Kyushu! Kobe’s meant to be a beautiful and fun city overlooking the sea, so I’m really looking forward to exploring it all lit up at night. We’ll also be making a trip up the Shin-Kobe ropeway for some amazing views!



Another Shinkansen ride down south, then we’re in the island of Kyushu! Grace has been living here for the last 6 months, so she’ll be showing us around her home city. There’s also a side-trip to a small city called Itoshima for some strawberry picking scheduled…


This small city on Kyushu is famous for its hot springs. We’ll be checking out the ‘Beppu hells’ and trying out some famous steam cooking here.



A nice day trip from Beppu is Yufuin, a popular hot spring resort. It’s also home to the Yufuin Floral Village, where a Kiki’s Delivery Service-inspired bakery happens to be. Yes, we’ll be checking it out! What do you take me for?


A two-hour bus ride from Beppu (which I ‘m 99% sure I’ve booked correctly) is Kurokawa, a famous onsen resort tucked away in the the mountains. Amazing views, onsen hopping and the ryokan experience… I think this might be a highlight!



We haven’t quite decided whether we’ll just be passing through Kumamoto on the way back from Kurokawa, or actually spend the day there. Kumamoto is most famous for its impressive castle and mascot, Kumamon. If we’re in a rush I’ll try my best to buy some Kumamon tourist tat because that bear is cute.

Have you been to any of these places? What would you recommend? What should I take photos of? Or should I try my unprofessional hand at filming? Comment below as we fly this weekend!


One thought on “Back to Japan

  1. It just so happens I’ll be stopping in Fukuoka, Kumamoto, Kurokawa Onsen, and Beppu on a trip this month! I’m looking forward to it, but unsure which onsen I’ll prioritize on a brief stop in Kurokawa…

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