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KAGOSHIMA

Kagoshima is the Kyushu’s southernmost prefecture. Comprised of the mainland and 605 outlying islands, although jointly given the name “Kagoshima,” the prefecture in fact is a mixture of a diverse variety of cultures. To your average Japanese person, Kagoshima means shochu liquor, kurobuta pork, shirokuma shave ice, and sweet potatoes – in other words, a smorgasbord of delicious food and drink. The food culture born of the area’s temperate weather and the people who live there are both laid back. Drinking delicious shochu and laughing heartily. That is the image of Kagoshima.

One example that conveys this relaxed attitude is the Kagoshima expression “tegetege,” meaning something along the lines of “only to the extent necessary.” “Tegetege de yoka” – “You only need to do it to the extent necessary.” A phrase befitting the carefree locals of Kagoshima, who are little interested in business or profit. Conversely, the man who led the Meiji Restoration and guided Japan into the modern age was a feudal warrior of the ancient Satsuma Domain who made his base in Kagoshima. As such, the people of Kagoshima may appear placid on the outside, but they hide a passionate heart. Like the volcano of Sakurajima, one of the prefecture’s symbols, Kagoshima also has a hot side.

    • Spring 5°C–22°C
      Flying fish, sea lettuce, the Daihanya Festival
    • Summer 20°C–35°C
      Shirokuma shave ice, silver-stripe round herring, Rokugatsudo lantern festivals, shochu liquor
    • Autumn 12°C–25°C
      Sweet potatoes, the Ohara Festival, Indo-Pacific sailfish
    • Winter 3°C–10°C
      Satsuma-jiru stew, Kagoshima ramen, keihan chicken and rice
    • Kagoshima City
      Kagoshima City is located in the center of Kagoshima Prefecture. The city contains numerous spots where you can come in contact with the history of the Meiji Restoration, including famous sites related to ancient Satsuma Domain and personages such as Saigo Takamori and Okubo Toshimichi. You can also find the shop which invented shirokuma shave ice and numerous restaurants specializing in kurobuta pork.
    • Kirishima
      A plateau land area located in the northeast of Kagoshima City. A group of 23 volcanoes including the 1,700 meter high Mt. Karakunidake sore into the sky. The area is also famous as a hot spring village.
    • Osumi Peninsula
      A peninsula located in the east of Kagoshima Bay. Beyond Cape Sata, Kyushu’s southernmost point, lies the island of Yakushima, which was registered a World Heritage Site in 1993.
    • Ibusuki
      A city located on the Satsuma Peninsula in the southwest of Kagoshima Prefecture. Ibusuki is warm and pleasant throughout the year. The area is famous for its hot spring steam sand baths.
    • Sakurajima
      A volcanic mountain on Osumi Peninsula, rising out of Kagoshima Bay. One of the symbols of Kagoshima and an active volcano that still erupts frequently today. Sakurajima has also been designated a Japanese Geopark.
    • Izumi
      An ancient capital on the border with Kumamoto Prefecture. Deeply connected with the history of the former Satsuma Domain, visitors to the city of Izumi can tour the residences of numerous ancient samurai.
    • Car
      The Kyushu Expressway connects the prefecture north to south. There are no expressways leading to Izumi or the Osumi Peninsula; it would be best to factor in some time if you are planning on visiting these areas by car.
    • Bus
      Shuttle busses leave from Kagoshima Airport to key areas in the prefecture. If you have a specific destination in mind, the direct access offered by busses from the airport may be best.
    • Train
      JR trains operate in Kagoshima City and extend to the Satsuma Peninsula, Satsumasendai City, and Izumi City. Note that there are no trains which travel to the Osumi Peninsula.
    • Air
      Kagoshima Airport is located in the northeast of Kagoshima City. Flights from major areas such as Haneda, Nagoya, Osaka, and Okinawa offer easy access.
    • Kagoshima Airport is a 75 minute flight from Naha Airport
  • Kurobuta pork
    Kurobuta pork

    All of Kagoshima Prefecture

  • Shirokuma shave ice
    Shirokuma shave ice

    Kagoshima City

  • Shochu liquor
    Shochu liquor

    Kagoshima City

  • Tosenkyo Somen Nagashi
    Tosenkyo Somen Nagashi

    Ibusuki City

  • Hot steam sand baths
    Hot steam sand baths

    Ibusuki City

  • Satsuma kiriko cut glass
    Satsuma kiriko cut glass

    Kagoshima City

  • Kirishima Open-Air Museum
    Kirishima Open-Air Museum

    Aira-gun

  • Yakushima
    Yakushima

    Osumi Peninsula

  • Kagoshima Airport
    Kagoshima Airport

    Kirishima City