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Regions Recommended for Foreign Visitors on Their Second Visit to Japan (Part 2)

In the last episode’s digression, I talked about the charms of Hokkaido and Tohoku, and received comments from several international parties saying, “It was helpful!” This time, switching from the northern regions, I would like to share the attractions of Okinawa, the southern islands Japan is proud of, and Kyushu, which has a variety of charms.

2. Okinawa & Kyushu


Miyako Island:

Similar to Hokkaido, you can fly to the main island of Okinawa in just under three hours from international airports like Haneda and Narita, which are frequently used by foreigners. Additionally, you can reach the surrounding attractive islands such as Ishigaki Island and Miyako Island by direct flights in about three hours and thirty minutes. After enjoying the urban charms of Tokyo or Osaka, I especially recommend visiting these places if you want to “experience a different culture and the great nature of Japan and relax!” First of all, the sea is breathtakingly beautiful, so it would be nice to relax on the beach or go snorkeling! For example, Miyako Island, with its crystal-clear blue waters so pristine they are referred to as “Miyako Blue” and Yonaha Maehama Beach, known as the most beautiful in the East, are places I would definitely recommend to foreigners who love beaches and marine activities.

Furthermore, Kyushu, located a little north of Okinawa, is a region attractive for its diverse food, culture, history, and nature. It’s a wonderful place to visit, taking your time separately from Okinawa if possible. For instance, Nagasaki Prefecture in Kyushu was the only place in Japan that traded with foreigners during the period of national seclusion. As a result, a unique culture influenced by the West and China developed there. The culture of Nagasaki is called “Wakaran Culture,” influencing buildings, food, and festivals to this day. In particular, the “Nagasaki Lantern Festival” in winter and the traditional “Nagasaki Kunchi” festival in autumn are famous. These festivals attract many visitors every year. Also, Nagasaki is known for one of the world’s most beautiful night views, ranked alongside Hong Kong and Monaco as one of the “New Top Three Night Views of the World.”

稲佐山山頂展望台からの夜景(世界新三大夜景)の無料写真素材 - ID.29190|ぱくたそ

Night View at Nagasaki:

Speaking of Nagasaki, I highly recommend trying “Nagasaki Champon,” a noodle dish rich with seafood and vegetables, made with a broth of pork bones and chicken carcasses. It’s delicious enough to be truly impressive!


Nagasaki Champon:

How did you find Okinawa and Kyushu, both reachable from Tokyo by plane in about 2 to 3 hours? Today, I only introduced a fraction of their many charms. If you’re interested, I’d be happy if you would explore further, perhaps asking ChatGPT or researching on your own, and consider visiting to discover even more of what these regions have to offer!

Masaki “Mark” Iino
Founder & CEO