Fukuoka Museums

Fukuoka City & Fukuoka Prefecture Museums 福岡の博物館

Fukuoka city, Dazaifu and Kitakyushu in Fukuoka Prefecture in northern Kyushu have some excellent museums and art galleries.

This area of Japan, especially Hakata and Dazaifu, was the gateway for the exchange of ideas, people and goods from the early periods of Japanese history until the end of the Edo Period.

Located closer to Busan than Tokyo, Fukuoka has long had stronger ties with the Asian continent than other parts of Japan. From Korean potters - often forcibly brought to Japan - and Chinese leaders in the past to Korean and Chinese tourists today, Asian influence has been and remains very palpable in Kyushu's largest city.

See a listing of museums and art galleries in Fukuoka.

Fukuoka Asian Art Museum (FAAM)

The Fukuoka Asian Art Museum bills itself as "the only museum in the world that systematically collects and exhibits Asian modern and contemporary art. The works in the collection of the museum are not imitation of Western art or repetitions of traditional works.” And it more than lives up to this billing. FAAM also holds regular art lectures, workshops and film screenings. The Fukuoka Asian Art Museum is located in the center of Fukuoka on the 7th and 8th floors of the Riverain Building. It is three-minute walk from Nakasu-Kawabata Station or a 15-minute walk from Canal City.

Fukuoka City Museum, Fukuoka, Kyushu, Japan.
Fukuoka City Museum, Fukuoka, Kyushu, Japan

Fukuoka City Museum

Fukuoka City Museum is located in the Momochi district of Fukuoka and opened in 1990. The permanent exhibition is dedicated to the history of Fukuoka and is arranged in eleven zones. Highlights include the Kin-in Gold Seal (a National Treasure) presented to the ancient Japanese king of Na by China's Han Emperor and exhibits on the city's Hakata Gion Yamakasa festival held annually in the first two weeks of July.

Fukuoka Art Museum

The Fukuoka Art Museum is located in Ohori Park and combines ancient Buddhist statues, calligraphy, byobu screens and ceramics with modern art by such foreign and Japanese artists as Marc Chagall, Anish Kapoor, Yoshida Hiroshi and Joan Miró. The Fukuoka Art Museum also stages regular special exhibitions.
Fukuoka Art Museum, 1-6 Ohori-Koen Park, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka 810-0051; Tel: 092 714 6051; Hours: 9.30am-5.30pm; closed Mondays (www.fukuoka-art-museum.jp)

The museum is currently closed from September 2016 until March 2019 for renovation.

Anpanman Children's Museum in Mall

Like its counterparts in SendaiYokohamaNagoya, and KobeThe Anpanman Children's Museum in Mall is not really a museum. Most of the space is taken up with a variety of play areas, including a sandbox, bouncy castle, small train ride, slides etc., though there are exhibits of Anpanman characters and an area for arts and crafts.


Robosquare (ロボスクエア) inside the TNC TV Building in Fukuoka is a free museum showcasing Japan's prowess in the field of robotics. On display are the robotic dog, Aibo, the cuddly cyborg seal, Paro and a number of other robots including Aimo, Robonova and RIDC. Robosquare holds workshops and seminars for school children to prepare for participation in Robocup Junior competitions and to promote the robotics industry in Fukuoka.

Kyushu National Museum, Dazaifu, Fukuoka Prefecture.
The striking modern architecture of Kyushu National Museum, Dazaifu
Kyushu National Museum, Dazaifu, Fukuoka Prefecture.
Kyushu National Museum, Dazaifu

Kyushu National Museum

The superb Kyushu National Museum in Dazaifu is Japan's fourth National Museum after Tokyo National MuseumKyoto National Museum and Nara National Museum. The Kyushu National Museum opened to much fanfare in 2005. Dazaifu was the site of a government office in the Nara and Heian periods of Japanese history dealing with diplomacy with Asia. It is this rich history of interaction with the Asian mainland and the surviving art from the period that is celebrated in this high-tech and large-scale museum.

Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art, Kitakyushu, Kyushu.
Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art, Kitakyushu, Kyushu

Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art

The Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art was designed by Kyushu-born architect Arata Isozaki and the park-like grounds offer views over Kitakyushu and a number of sculptures. The Kitakyushu Municipal Museum of Art has a collection of over 6,000 artworks, both Japanese and Western, including wood block prints by Hokusai and Utagawa as well as works by western artists Bonnard, Bourdelle, Degas, Monet, Renoir and Rodin. There is a annex of the museum in Riverwalk Kitakyushu.

Matsumoto Seicho Memorial Museum

The Matsumoto Seicho Memorial Museum (Tel: 093 582 2761) in Kokura is dedicated to the life and works of the native Kitakyushu mystery writer. Matsumoto's thrillers available in English translation include Inspector Imanishi Investigates and The Voice.

Kyushu Railway History Museum, Kitakyushu, Kyushu.
Kyushu Railway History Museum, Kitakyushu, Kyushu

Kyushu Railway History Museum

The Kyushu Railway History Museum in Mojiko is housed in a two storey red brick building that was the former headquarters of Kyushu Railways,  is a few minutes walk from Mojiko Station along a well-signed route. The Kyushu Railway History Museum has an extensive set of exhibits including model railways, dioramas & simulators as well as equipment and photos documenting the history of rail in Kyushu. There are plenty of interactive exhibits and a big shop selling rail souvenirs, but the stars of the museum are outside; a series of locomotives and trains from the age of steam up to the 1960's. Many can be boarded.

Higashida Blast Furnace, Kitakyushu, Kyushu.
Higashida Blast Furnace, Kitakyushu, Kyushu

Higashida Blast Furnace

It was with the construction of the Higashida Blast Furnace in Yahata that the modern steel industry in Japan really began. Now the blast furnace and related structures are open to the public as an Historical Plaza, an open-air Industrial Heritage Museum, and as well as being able to wander around the structures there are numerous signboards explaining the processes as well as a locomotive and rolling stock used here. The Higashida Blast Furnace is located only two minutes south of the JR Spaceworld Station.

Higashida Blast Furnace
2-3-12 Higashida, Yahata-higashi-ku, Kitakyushu-shi, Fukuoka, 805-0071
Tel: 093 582 2389
Entrance is free

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