Fukuoka City is an amazing, vibrant place. Plenty to see and
do, with a rich, diverse community of foreigners living and working
here. Fukuoka City is actually made up of several smaller cities,
all absorbed into one, most notably Hakata, which was founded
well over 1000 years ago and was the site of the Mongol Invasions
of Japan in the late 13th century.
The hotspot of Fukuoka City is the Tenjin district, with so much
to see and do that after three years I still had plenty to discover.
Shops, department stores, restaurants, clubs, karaoke bars, pachinko
parlors, arcades, and bars, everywhere, on multiple levels above
and below ground. And, oh yes, the street-side yatai,
offering up steaming bowls to Fukuoka's famous ramen noodles until
the wee hours of the morning.
This is the remains of Fukuoka Castle. There is nothing left
of it now except walls, but the complex is very large, multi-tiered,
and fascinating to walk through. This is the entrance.
This is where the central keep would have sat. A local told me
that the castle was destroyed in WWII, and hasn't been rebuilt.
The view from the top of the castle affords and impressive view
of the city. In the distance, is Fukuoka Dome, where the Fukuoka
Softbank Hawks, perennially one of the top two or three teams
in Japan, play baseball.
Here's a distant view of a Fukuoka landmark, Fukuoka Tower.
Here are some shots from Fukuoka pier after dark, looking back
toward Tenjin. In retrospect, it probably wasn't too safe to be
out there alone, and I do mean alone, after dark.
Modern-day Hakata Bay.
Fukuoka Tower, in two bites.
Near Fukuoka Tower is the Fukuoka City Museum. This is a model
of a boat that similar to those that used to ply the waters between
Japan, China, and Korea during the medieval period.