We’ve compiled the best of the best in Kyushu - browse our top choices for the top things to see or do during your stay.

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  • 1. Canal City Hakata

    Canal City is the modern shopping and entertainment hub for Fukuoka. Located next to the Nakasu River, the group of curvy bright red buildings surround a central courtyard where there is an hourly fountain show. The mall is filled with Japanese and international brands, the restaurant selection diverse, and there's a cinema complex with IMAX screens on the top floors. It is flanked on the river side by the Grand Hyatt Fukuoka hotel, and on the Hakata side by the Canal City Fukuoka Washington Hotel. It's a 15-minute walk from Hakata Station or Tenjin Station, or a seven-minute walk from the Gion subway station.

    1--2, Sumiyoshi, Fukuoka, Fukuoka-ken, 812-0018, Japan
  • 2. Fukusaya

    Castella is a simple brick-shaped sponge cake first brought to Nagasaki by the Portuguese. The bakery Fukusaya has been in business since the Meiji period, so when you say "castella" in Nagasaki, most people think of this shop's cakes and their distinctive yellow packaging. There's a branch on the first floor of Amu Plaza Nagasaki, next to Nagasaki Station.

    Onouemachi 1--1, Nagasaki, Nagasaki-ken, 850-0058, Japan
  • 3. Iwataya

    The fifth floor of the new section of this department store carries the city's most complete selection of local merchandise, including Hakata dolls, silk, and ceramics. Also check out the impressive selection of kimono, obi, and the more inexpensive summer yukata. Iwataya fills two buildings on either side of the street with an above-ground walkway connecting the two sections. If you can't find what you need here, there are several more high-end department stores nearby including Mitsukoshi, Daimaru, Parco, and Vioro.

    2--5--35 Tenjin, Fukuoka, Fukuoka-ken, 810-8680, Japan
  • 4. Kumamoto Prefectural Traditional Crafts Center

    This is the best place to buy regional handicrafts. It's in a brick building across from the Akazu-mon entrance to the castle. Along with Higo zogan, check out the kiji-uma (literally, "pheasant horses"), a traditional toy for boys, or the hana-te-bako (flower-covered boxes), a traditional present for girls. On the second floor there is a Special Permanent Exhibition Room (¥210).

    3--35 Chiba-jo-machi, Kumamoto, Kumamoto-ken, 860-0001, Japan

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