The city is like the Venice of Japan

Yanagawa is called “water city”, like Venice in Italy, because it owns 470 km of canals, visitors can take a boat to admire.


Yanagawa is a city in southwestern Fukuoka prefecture, Japan. During the Sengoku period, this was a castle town protected by the surrounding moats. Even though the castle was burned down in 1872, the old town still exists today and attracts many tourists.

The main attraction of Yanagawa is the scenic boat ride experience around town. If in Italy, the passenger boats are called gondola, in Yanagawa called “Donko”.

People often use a long pole to push the boat. When carrying passengers, they often sing traditional songs to create a happy atmosphere for passengers, sometimes even show off their boating skills on the distance of about 3-4 km.

The boat departure point is just a 3-minute walk from Nishitetsu Yanagawa Station. The cost of a boat tour is about 1,000 to 1,500 yen (200,000-300,000 VND), stretching along the banks of the canal are rows of green willows falling into the water, ancient houses, remnants of ancient castle or Yaemon bridge covered with horizontal moss.

The city is also a famous cherry blossom viewing spot with about 600 different species. In spring, enjoying a boat ride, visitors will feel lost in a pink street.

Every year there is a 3-day festival in November with activities of reciting poetry, playing music, night sailing and fireworks. During the months of March and April, Yanagawa holds a number of festivals, notably the Hinamatsuri or the festival for women on March 3.

Yanagawa is suitable for a day trip, especially when you are near Hakata city or Dazaifu temple, Fukuoka. This place not only has charming scenery but also rich in culture and history, with friendly people.

You can get to the city by the Nishitetsu train, which costs 850 yen (170,000 dong) one way from Nishitetsu Fukuoka (located in Tenjin). The Nishitetsu is a private railway, so you cannot use the JR Rail pass.

The signature dish of Yanagawa city is Seiromushi – grilled eel served with rice and sliced omelet in a traditional wooden box. This dish is served at many local restaurants of the town, costing about 2,000-3,000 yen (400,000 – 600,000 VND).

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