Sumo is the national sport of Japan and holds a special place in the hearts and minds of the nation. Fukuoka Kokusai Center is to Fukuoka what the Ryogoku Kokugikan is to Tokyo. The center of Kyushu’s sumo activity with annual tournaments (November) taking place with thousands of fans packing the arena. Only 10 minutes from Hakata Station, the Fukuoka Kokusai Center can hold a whopping 10,000 people and has a total size of 10,000 m. Made up of 2 separate buildings space regularly holds concerts and has attracted artists such as Japanese superstars gyaru Koda Kumi and Ayumi Hamasaki. Domestic and international sporting events are also hosted and in 2006 held the Volleyball World Championships.
One point to remember is that the Fukuoka Kokusai Center is not open to the public on non-event days but if you do happen to find yourself nearby then try out the Bayside Place Hakata shopping center and event the Minato Onsen hot spring if you fancy a plunge into healing and very hot water!
12-minute walk from Subway Gofukumachi Station 15-minute walk from Subway Nakasu-Kawabata Station
The Kushida Shrine of Hakata is one of the oldest shrines in Fukuoka. Famous for its Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival, this shrine has many amazing attractions such as the largest otafuku mask in Japan and a fountain where people pray for eternal youth. Its history dates back to 757, when Hakata flourished as a port city that welcomed delegations from mainland China and Korea. Hakata in downtown Fukuoka is a very popular spot for travelers who want to try delicious local dishes like Hakata Ramen, as well as the opportunity to shop. Although it looks like a busy business district, Hakata has a whole other side to it, as the city also has numerous shrines and temples.
Canal City Hakata (キャナルシティ博多) is a large shopping and entertainment complex in Fukuoka, Japan. Called the "city within the city," it boasts numerous attractions including shops; cafes; restaurants; a theater; game center; cinemas; two hotels; and a canal, which runs through the complex. [Wikipedia]
Not far from Tenjin (central Fukuoka City) is one of Kyushu’s most prominent cherry blossom viewing spots. It’s a central hub for anthophiles and nature lovers with a huge display of flowers and plants. The park also has an athletic field, sports facilities and is nearby Ohori Park and Fukuoka City Art Museum. The park hosts Fukuoka Castle which is an immense structure brimming with history and significance. Additionally kokoran (an ancient guest house for foreign diplomats) was found in the park in 1987 and cements Fukuoka's reputation as an important destination and port for international relations throughout the ages.