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Where to stay in Fukuoka: Best Areas And Hotels For 2023

Explore the Best Accommodation Options in Fukuoka. A Comprehensive Guide to Finding the Perfect Place to Stay

Momochihama beach in Sawara ward in Fukuoka

Fukuoka is a captivating city situated on the northern shore of Japan's Kyushu Island, known for its modern architecture, rich history, and delicious cuisine. As the largest city on the island, Fukuoka offers wonderful attractions, from the ancient Kushida Shrine to the contemporary Canal City Hakata shopping complex.

If you're wondering where to stay in Fukuoka, Nakasu in Hakata Ward is the best place to base yourself if you're visiting for the first time. There are countless options to choose from that cater to your preferences and budgets, and you will be close to numerous bars, restaurants and yatai (street food stalls).

If shopping and entertainment are high on your list, consider staying in Tenjin in Chuo Ward, where you'll find numerous shopping centres, perfect for Japanese souvenirs, department stores, and a lively nightlife scene.

For families looking for a more laid-back experience, Saitozaki in Higashi Ward offers a tranquil atmosphere with easy access to Uminonakamichi Seaside Park, a large space with an amusement park, a campground, zoo, a pool, and flower festivals.

Beach lovers will find their paradise in Momochihama in Sawara Ward, with its beautiful sandy beaches and stunning waterfront views.

No matter what kind of experience you're looking for, Fukuoka offers a diverse range of accommodation types, including modern hotels, traditional ryokans, and family friendly guest houses, ensuring a memorable stay in this fun Japanese city.

Here is a summary of the best places to stay in Fukuoka at a glance:

  • Best area for first time visitors: Nakasu in Hakata Ward
  • Best area for shopping and entertainment: Tenjin in Chuo Ward
  • Best place for families: Saitozaki in Higashi Ward
  • Best place for beach: Momochihama in Sawara Ward

In this guide, I will elaborate on each area and explain in detail why it's interesting and ideal for your preference, budget and travel style.

Where to stay in Fukuoka map

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Where To Stay In Fukuoka

Where to stay in Fukuoka Summary
❤️ Best Area for first-timers: Nakasu, Hakata Ward
💎 Best luxury 5* hotel: Hotel Resol Trinity
🏨 Best mid-range hotel: The Lively Fukuoka Hakata
🛏️ Best budget hotel: Henn na Hotel

Nakasu in Hakata Ward, best area to stay in Fukuoka for first time visitors

Nakasu area in Hakata ward in Fukuoka

Nakasu, situated in Hakata Ward, is an area that should not be missed on your first trip to Fukuoka. Expect a colourful and fun district with a lively atmosphere, traditional charm, and modern amenities, making it the perfect introduction to the city. Because of its prime location, shopping, food and entertainment, Nakasu in Hakata Ward is the ideal place to stay for first-time visitors to Fukuoka, providing a well-rounded experience of the city's unique character and charm.

Nakasu is a great place to explore and learn about Fukuoka's history and traditions, with plenty of attractions and exciting things to do. Walk along the picturesque canals, visit the renowned yatai (street food stalls) at night, and enjoy all the cultural attractions.

Some must-see attractions in the area include the historic Kushida Shrine, a revered Shinto shrine dating back to the 8th century, and Canal City Hakata, a shopping and entertainment complex featuring a man-made canal running through the centre.

Don't miss the opportunity to explore the area's lively yatai scene, with delicious local Japanese food such as Hakata ramen, mentaiko, and other dishes like gyoza, ramen and yakitori. While staying in Fukuoka, try the famous Hakata ramen, a mouth-watering dish featuring rich pork broth and thin noodles.

Nakasu is well-connected to other parts of Fukuoka, making it a convenient base for exploring the city or taking day trips to nearby destinations. When you're looking for a lively night out or a relaxing drink, Nakasu has a variety of bars, clubs, pubs, and cafés to choose from.

For accommodation in Nakasu, you'll have plenty to pick from in the area. These include hotels of all types, ranging from budget to luxury, as well as holiday homes. Some popular choices to consider include budget hotels such as the Hotel Il Palazzo, mid-range hotels like the Hakata Tokyu REI Hotel, and luxury hotels like the Canal City Fukuoka Washington Hotel.

Best places to stay in Nakasu, Hakata Ward

Luxury: Hotel Resol Trinity Hakata

Hotel Resol Trinity Hakata is a modern hotel with a public bath, a restaurant, and free WiFi. It's conveniently located close to Nakasu-kawabata and Tenjin Subway Stations. Rooms have air conditioning, heating, fridge, TV, and en suite bathroom with toiletries. The hotel also offers a spa for ladies and laundry services.
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Mid-range: Fukuoka Floral Inn Nishinakasu

Fukuoka Floral Inn is a simple hotel located near Nakasu-Kawabata and Tenjin subway stations. Rooms offer free wired internet, Wi-Fi, satellite TV, air conditioning, air purifier, tea maker, and in-room massages.
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Budget: Toyoko Inn Hakata Nishi-nakasu

Toyoko Inn Hakata Nishi-nakasu is a 3-star hotel with air-conditioned rooms and free WiFi. It has a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space. The hotel rooms have flat-screen TVs. It also provides private parking.
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Tenjin in Chuo Ward, best area to stay for shopping and entertainment

Tenjin area in Chuo Ward Fukuoka

Tenjin, located in Chuo Ward, is the best area to stay in Fukuoka for shopping and entertainment enthusiasts. This bustling and energetic district is a shopper's paradise, with lots of stores, boutiques, and entertainment venues that cater to every taste and budget.

If you're visiting Fukuoka for shopping, then you are staying in the perfect place. Tenjin has so many stores, you won't ever get bored with your retail options here.

Visit the Tenjin Chikagai which is the island's largest underground shopping mall stretches 600 meters down. Go to Daimyo for thousands, of clothing stores, cafes, restaurants, and bars and don't miss finding cool souvenirs in Loft or Don Quijote.

For interesting pictures, check out ACROS Fukuoka building, an architectural marvel with a beautiful rooftop garden.

Besides its shopping appeal, Tenjin is also known for its lively nightlife, with plenty of bars, clubs, pubs, and cafés to choose from. Make sure to visit the Oyafuko-dori street, a popular nightlife spot filled with trendy bars and clubs catering to both locals and tourists. It's the place where many students hang out.

Tenjin is well-connected to other parts of Fukuoka, making it an ideal base for exploring the city. You are located just 20 minutes walk from the major attraction, Ohori Park with its large gardens and pond.

Tenjin is the perfect spot for those who want to be in the heart of the action, whether it's shopping during the day or enjoying the vibrant nightlife after dark.

Since Tenjin is in the Chuo Ward (literally translated to Central Ward), you'll find many hotels and accommodation types to suit your preferences and budget. You'll find affordable 4 star hotels but also great business hotels with easy access to main attractions.

Best places to stay in Tenjin, Chuo Ward

Luxury: Nishitetsu Grand Hotel

Nishitetsu Grand Hotel, just 3 minutes from Tenjin Station, offers 8 dining options, massage treatments, and comfortable rooms with free WiFi. Neutral-colored rooms feature LCD TVs, green tea, and minibars.
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Mid-range: Lamp Light Books Hotel Fukuoka

Lamp Light Books Hotel Fukuoka is a 3-star hotel situated in the center of Fukuoka. The hotel offers air-conditioned rooms, free bikes, free WiFi, and a restaurant. It also features a 24-hour front desk and luggage storage space.
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Budget: Tokyu Stay Fukuoka Tenjin

Tokyu Stay Fukuoka Tenjin is a centrally located hotel in Fukuoka, with the Tenjin Central Park just 350 yards away. The hotel offers a restaurant, buffet breakfast, and free WiFi. The air-conditioned rooms feature a desk, kettle, fridge, microwave, safety deposit box, flat-screen TV, and a private bathroom with a bidet.
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Saitozaki in Higashi Ward, best area to stay for families

Flamingos in Uminonakamichi Seaside Park

Saitozaki is a relaxed and green neighbourhood in Higashi Ward, and the perfect destination for families visiting Fukuoka. This tranquil and scenic area is close to the huge and versatile Uminonakamichi Seaside Park making it an ideal base for families looking for a more laid-back experience in the city.

Saitozaki is great because of its close proximity to various family-friendly attractions. The nearby Uminonakamichi Seaside Park is a family favourite with lots of recreational activities such as cycling, picnicking, and playgrounds. The park also features a beautiful rose garden, a water park, and an aquarium, ensuring a fun-filled day for the entire family. There is even a small zoo and the nearby Uminonakamichi Beach. You are just a short drive away from Shikanoshima Island, with even more parks, shrines and trails.

Saitozaki is offers easy connections to other parts of the city, just 20 minutes ferry ride to Nakasu which means you can enjoy a day of shopping and explore the lively night street food stalls too.

Ultimately, Saitozaki has a laid back, relaxed atmosphere with family-oriented attractions, making it an excellent choice for those travelling with children.

In Saitozaki, you'll find accommodation that cater to families, ranging from budget to luxury, as well as apartments and holiday homes with private kitchens for your ease and extra comfort.

Best places to stay in Saitozaki, Higashi Ward

Luxury: Luxury Villa Saitozaki UMIHOTARU

Located in Saitozaki, Fukuoka, Luxury Villa Saitozaki UMIHOTARU offers air-conditioned accommodation with complimentary WiFi and private parking. The apartment features 3 bedrooms, a kitchen with a microwave and fridge, 2 bathrooms with a bidet, slippers, and a washing machine.
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Luxury: The Luigans Spa and Resort

The Luigans Spa and Resort is a relaxing seaside resort in Uminonakamichi Seaside Park with an outdoor pool, dining options, and spa treatments. Some rooms offer ocean views and a balcony, while free WiFi is available throughout the property.
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Larger Groups: Time Share Besso Taiyoso

Time Share Besso Taiyoso is an air-conditioned holiday home with a kitchen, located in Fukuoka, 1.2 miles from Uminonakamichi Seaside Park. The accommodation offers free WiFi and private parking on site. It can accommodate up to 16 guests and it has 5 different bedrooms.
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Holiday Home: Fukuoka - House / Vacation STAY 4617

Fukuoka - House / Vacation STAY 4617 is an air-conditioned holiday home located in Fukuoka, 1.1 miles from Uminonakamichi Seaside Park. The holiday home provides free WiFi and private parking. The holiday home can accommodate up to 6 people, making it ideal for families.
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Momochihama in Sawara Ward, best area to stay for the beach

Momochihama beach in Sawara ward in Fukuoka

Momochihama, is part of the Seaside Momochi area in Sawara Ward, and the ultimate destination for beach lovers visiting Fukuoka. This picturesque and modern area boasts a beautiful sandy beach and stunning waterfront views, making it the perfect spot for those looking to enjoy the sun, sand, and sea during their stay in the city.

Momochihama stretches for one kilometre long, and it's an artificial beach, part of the Seaside Momochi resort built in 1989. Relax in the sun, take a swim in the summer, or walk along the Hakata Bay to discover waterfront restaurants. Momochihama provides a wonderful opportunity to unwind and soak up the sun while experiencing Fukuoka's vibrant coastal lifestyle.

In addition to the beach, Momochihama is home to Fukuoka Tower, the tallest seaside tower in Japan, which offers spectacular panoramic views of the city and its surroundings. The top floor has an observation area with a 360-degree panorama over Fukuoka City. Don't miss the VR binoculars, which allow you to feel like flying through the air with UFOs and robots.

At the heart of the beach, you'll find Marizon, with restaurants, shops, a wedding hall, and a ferry port connecting it to Uminonakamichi Seaside Park located on the other side of Hakata Bay.

In terms of accommodation in Momochihama, know that you have limited options and hotels tend to book up really fast here. You might want to consider securing your booking as early as possible to ensure you're close to the beach. Alternatively, you can find more accommodation within 15-20 minutes walking distance from the beach.

Best places to stay in Momochihama, Sawara Ward

Luxury: Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk

Hilton Fukuoka Sea Hawk is a high-rise hotel overlooking Hakata Bay, offering 5 dining options, a large outdoor pool, a spa, and a fitness center. The air-conditioned rooms are spacious and feature light natural colors, with either city or bay views.
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Mid-range: The Residential Suites Fukuoka

The Residential Suites Fukuoka provides spacious studios with a balcony, kitchenette, and washing/drying machine. The hotel has two swimming pools, a restaurant, and a fitness center.
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Holiday Home: CocoConne Fukuoka Nishijin

CocoConne Fukuoka Nishijin is a non-smoking guest house located in Fukuoka, offering free WiFi and express check-in/out. It's near Fukuoka Tower, Fukuoka Yahuoku! Dome, and other popular attractions. Air-conditioned rooms feature a flat-screen TV, private bathroom, and other amenities.
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Apartment: AMP FLAT Nishijin 2

AMP FLAT Nishijin 2 is a two-bedroom air-conditioned apartment located 1.4 miles from Momochihama Beach and 1.2 miles from Fukuoka Tower. The apartment offers free WiFi, a flat-screen TV, a fully equipped kitchen with a fridge and a coffee machine, and 2 bathrooms with a shower and a hairdryer.
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Tips for first time visitors

  • Stay connected with a pocket Wi-Fi device or prepaid SIM card. Renting or buying in advance will help you use navigation apps, translators, and do some extra research on the go. You can pick up the device at the airport, or have it delivered to your hotel reception.
  • While Japan's public system can be overwhelming, using Google maps makes it super easy to get around. I do recommend renting a car in Okinawa to get around with ease.
  • While cards are widely accepted, many small establishments still prefer cash, particularly in older neighbourhoods. Major banks in Japan now accept international cards for cash withdrawals. Don't forget to check how expensive is Japan to know what to expect.
  • Be aware of Japanese customs and manners, such as removing your shoes before entering someone's home, bowing as a form of greeting, and not tipping at restaurants.
  • Knowing a few simple Japanese phrases can go a long way. For those serious about learning Japanese, check out Japanese with Aimee and use the code YCTRAVEL to get a 10% discount on the course.
  • For those on a budget, visit Japanese convenience stores, or "konbini," for snacks, drinks, and meals at affordable prices. You can also grab a quick drink or bite from a vending machine.

Beautiful beach of Okinawa

Useful resources for first timers

Final thoughts

Fantastic, you now know where to stay in Fukuoka to suit your travel style and preference. Fukuoka is a bucket list destination for most people lovely beaches, welcoming people and unique cuisine. Whether you are after a beach holiday or want to experience a unique culture in Japan, Fukuoka is an incredible place to stay and a great destination for your upcoming holiday.

If you are looking to extend your time in Japan, make sure to check out my Japan itineraries for 7 days, 2 weeks or 3 weeks in Japan.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • How many days should I spend in Fukuoka?

    If you plan to visit popular attractions, do some shopping, eat local food and enjoy the city, three to four days will be enough. This number of days will even allow you to enjoy a day on the beach in Momochihama or enjoy a day in nature in Uminonakamichi Seaside Park.

  • Should I stay in Tenjin or Hakata?

    As a first timer, I recommend staying in Hakata as it offers more markets and has a focus on Fukuoka's food culture. Hakata is a more traditional district that offers a glimpse into Fukuoka's history and culture. Hakata is also located close to Fukuoka's central station, making it convenient for transportation.

    Tenjin, on the other hand, is a bustling shopping and entertainment district with many restaurants, bars, and shopping centres. It's a popular area for tourists and locals alike, with many options for entertainment, food, and shopping. Tenjin is also located in the centre of Fukuoka, making it convenient to access other parts of the city.

  • Is Fukuoka good for tourists?

    Yes, Fukuoka is a great destination for tourists. It's a modern city with interesting history, culture, and local cuisine. There are many tourist attractions, such as ancient temples and shrines, contemporary shopping centres, and beautiful parks, as well as beaches for a summer holiday.

    Fukuoka attracts many tourists with its delicious street food markets and special dishes like Mentaiko (spicy cod roe), Hakata Tonkotsu ramen, gyoza and hot pots. Fukuoka is really big on food, and for example the super popular ramen restaurant Ichiran was born here in Fukuoka in 1960. Fukuoka is a great destination for tourists looking to experience Japan's rich history and modern culture.

  • Is 3 days in Fukuoka enough?

    Yes, 3 days in Fukuoka is enough to experience some of the city's top attractions and local culture. You can visit popular tourist spots such as the Kushida Shrine, Fukuoka Tower, and Canal City Hakata shopping complex, as well as explore the local street food scene and shopping areas in Chuo Ward.

  • Why is Fukuoka so popular?

    Fukuoka is a popular destination for several reasons:

    • It has a great blend of history, culture, and food, with a range of attractions that cater to different interests.
    • Fukuoka is known for its delicious food scene, with many local specialities that are popular among both tourists and locals.
    • Fukuoka is easy to navigate, with a well-connected public transportation system that makes it easy to explore the city as well as take day trips to other parts of Kyushu Island like Nagasaki or Kumamoto.
    • Fukuoka has a relaxed, friendly and welcoming atmosphere, with locals who are known for their hospitality.
  • Why is Fukuoka called Hakata?

    Fukuoka was historically two separate cities, Fukuoka and Hakata, but they merged in 1889 to form the city of Fukuoka. However, the name "Hakata" is still widely used to refer to the central area of Fukuoka that was once the city of Hakata.

    Hakata was historically the port and merchant district, while Fukuoka was associated with samurai. Hakata is still used to refer to the area and the famous Hakata Station and dialect. Old Fukuoka, now Tenjin, was the main shopping area.

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