Karatsu is a fishing port located in the center of the Genkai almost National Park with a magnificent coastline characterized by strangely shaped rocks and caves carved by the waves. Karatsu is also famous for its castle and its Karatsu Kunchi Festival. In addition, the city is surrounded by beautiful natural landscapes and great beaches for bathers. Its pleasant climate throughout the year is another of its attractions.
What to see
The castle was built in 1608 by the feudal lord Karatsu. Its tower, rebuilt in 1966, offers a beautiful view over the entire city. The castle museum houses ancient Karatsu-style pottery as well as artifacts discovered during archaeological excavations at the site. The surrounding park, Maizuru Park, is especially attractive during the cherry and azaleas blooming.
- 20 min walk from JR Karatsu Station. It is also possible to take the municipal bus on the East line to the Karatsujo-iriguchi stop.
Nji-no-Matsubara or Rainbow Pine Forest
On a strip 5 km long and 1 km wide, there are more than a million hundred-year-old pine trees that line the maritime road. On the other side of the road you will find a magnificent beach, perfect for a swim. The camping areas, the youth hostel, the village hostel (Kokumin Shukusha) and some hotels invite the visitor to stay.
- 5 min walk from Higashi-Karatsu Station or 2 min walk from Niji-no-Matsubara Station, JR Chikuhi Line.
Behind Niji-no-Matsubara Beach, Mount Kagamiyama, which rises to 284 meters of altitude, offers a panoramic view of the White Castle of Karatsu and the entire city.
- 10 min by taxi from Niji-no-Matsubara.
Hikiyama Tenjijo, showroom of the festival floats
14 magnificent floats from the Karatsu Kunchi Festival (which runs from November 2 to 4) are on display here.
- 10 min walk from Karatsu Station.
This type of ceramic, characterized by its sober colors, can both be admired and purchased during visits to the kilns or in the showrooms. There are more than 20 kilns in operation in the city.
- Nakazato Taroemon oven. 5 min walk from Karatsu station, in the Choda neighborhood. The only part open to the public is the exhibition hall. Tel .: (0955) 72-8171.
Kyozan oven. 10 min walk from Niji-no-Matsubara Station. It is possible to attend the entire manufacturing process of ceramic pieces. It is essential to reserve by phone: (0955) 77-2131.
This fishing port owes its reputation to its morning market and the quality of its fish, seafood, fruits and vegetables.
- 40 min by bus from Karatsu.
How to get
Hakata Station> (1 hr 20 min by train, JR Chikuhi Line)> Karatsu Station
Saga Station> (1 hr 15 min by train, JR Karatsu Line)> Karatsu Station (calculate an additional 10 min to Nishi-Karatsu Station)
Imari Station> (55 min by train, JR Chikuhi Line)> Karatsu Station
Fukuoka Airport> (1 hr 44 min by “Karatsu-go” motorway coach)> Karatsu bus station
Fukuoka Nishitetsu Tenjin Bus Station> (1 hr by “Karatsu-go” motorway coach)> Karatsu Bus Station
Imari> 50 min by municipal bus> Karatsu
Karatsu Oteguchi Bus Station is a 5-minute walk from JR Karatsu Station.