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Yatsushiro (八代) [1] is a city in Kumamoto (prefecture), Kyushu, Japan.


Yatsushiro is the second biggest city in Kumamoto prefecture and Japan's largest producer of the igusa grass used to make tatami mats.

Get in[edit]

Yatsushiro station is the terminating stop on the JR Kagoshima Line from Hakata in Fukuoka, and on the Hisatsu Orange Railway.

Shin-Yatsushiro station, to the northeast, is served by both the JR Kagoshima Line, and the Kyushu Shinkansen from Hakata to Kagoshima.

From Fukuoka, take a Shinkansen train, either the Sakura or Tsubame, to Shin-Yatsushiro. Some trains only go as far as Kumamoto where a transfer to a local to Yatsushiro would be necessary. The shinkansen from Hakata directly to Shin-Yatsushiro takes 49 minutes and costs Y5140. If you are traveling from Kumamoto, you can take a regular local train (40 minutes; ¥720) or a Shinkansen (12 minutes; ¥1460).

All of these trips are covered under the Japan Rail Pass.

See[edit][add listing]

  • Yatsushiro Castle, [2]. Ruins of the castle are located in the center of the city, Kuma-river's torrent
  • Shohinken - Within the old castle grounds is the Shohinken Tea House, built in 1688 by the Matsui clan. When built, it was on the shore of Yatsushiro Bay. Now it is well inland. It contains a small museum of Matsui relics as well as a small stroll garden. In May, Higo Irises are in bloom.
  • 777 Steps, Intersection of Route 3 and Rinkosen. Visible from Route 3 (sangousen) are 777 steps leading up the mountain. With markers detailing your progress up and rest benches and gazebos along the way, the stone steps are a good place to get some exercise and be rewarded at the top with a great view of the city.  edit

Do[edit][add listing]

  • Myou-Kenn-Sai, [3]. This is a really exciting autumn festival on Labor Thanksgiving Day(November 23).
  • Hinagu hot spring, near Kyushu-Orange-railway Hinagu station. Simple spa and carbonic acid hydrogen spa. 40~50 Degrees Celsius. Said to be good for neuralgia and rheumatism.

Buy[edit][add listing]

  • AEON Yatsushiro and Youme Town are both in the city, providing shopping centers of various stores and restaurants.
  • Enthusiasts of pottery can find three Kodayaki kilns in the area. It's noted for its blue-gray crackled glaze with white inlay. The oldest is the former "Sakai" family kiln. The most famous is the Agano kiln in Hinagu.

Eat[edit][add listing]

  • Chikuwa, a type of fish sausage
  • Zabon, a citrus fruit.
  • Basashi, raw horsemeat served with soy and garlic.
  • Ayu, a sweetfish from the Kuma River, is a local specialty.
  • Unagi, eel, locally produced.
  • Karashi rencon, lotus root stuffed with hot mustard, is famous in the area.

Drink[edit][add listing]

  • Nightlife Alley. Located alongside the city's shopping arcade, this main road hosts Shidax, many bars, and snack bars. Smaller roads branch from the Alley, letting you explore even more bars.  edit

Sleep[edit][add listing]

Get out[edit]

  • Mount Aso - With its immense caldera, numerous hot spring resorts, fine hiking courses, and an active volcano to look down into when it cooperates.
  • Kagoshima - The southernmost city on Kyushu, and the end of the Shinkansen Line. With the massive live volcano, Sakurajima, plus the gorgeous Senganen Garden.
  • Fukuoka - Kyushu's largest and most active city, with a relaxing atmosphere, urban nightlife, famous tonkotsu ramen, and several beautiful gardens.
  • Kirishima-Kinkowan National Park - A beautiful area for volcanic hiking, with several waterfalls and flower fields.
  • Takachiho - In adjacent Miyazaki Prefecture is one of Japan's most beautiful gorges.
  • Kumamoto City - Famous for its castle (currently undergoing extensive repairs) and beautiful Suizenji Garden.
  • Nagasaki - One of Japan's most interesting and unique cities, and not at all because of its recent history.
  • Amakusa - Island chain SW of Kumamoto City, with beautiful scenery, boat cruises and not far from the south coast of Nagasaki (to which ferries run regularly).
  • Takamori - Small rural town on Aso's SE edge with nice natural scenery and a surreal shrine.
  • Shimabara - Another of Japan's finest hot spring areas in Nagasaki and sight of a live volcano. Offers mountaintop views like the ropeway up to Mt. Myoken, as well as the Unzen Jigoku or Unzen Hell, the sight of sulphuric fumaroles. Shimabara also has some Christian history, including the sight of the Shimabara Rebellion, crushed in 1637.

Routes through Yatsushiro
HakataKumamoto  N noframe S  Shin-MinamataKagoshima
KumamotoOgawa  N noframe S  → become Higo Orange LineSendaiKagoshima
KumamotoMatsubase  N noframe S  HitoyoshiKagoshima

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