Eat & Drink
Welcome to Nakasu—Fukuoka's infamous entertainment district
The Nakasu area is Fukuoka's entertainment heartland. Come nightfall, the area bursts with street traders, hustlers and locals all looking for night-time entertainment.
How to Get There
Nakasu is best accessed by subway. Take Fukuoka's Kuko Line to Nakasu-Kawabata Station.
You can access the area by bus. Buses connecting Hakata and Tenjin typically stop in the Nakasu area but check before you board.
- Rub shoulders with Fukuoka locals over some of the city's best street food at the yatai stalls
- Top-quality theatrical performances by some of Japan's most renowned actors and actresses at Hakataza Theatre
- Nakasu is busiest at night when the area truly comes to life, and some of Fukuoka's best food is on display
Fukuoka's entertainment center
Nakasu is an island in the middle of the city of Fukuoka , with the Nakagawa River to the west and the Hakatagawa River to the east. Over 3,500 restaurants and bars are crammed into this tiny area, with some of Fukuoka's best food to be found.
Not to be missed are the area's yatai street stalls that are set up every night from around 6 p.m. and continue oerating into the early hours of the morning. These stalls congregate around the southern part of Nakasu along the edge of the Nakagawa River, and are open year round.
Art, culture and festival wonders
Nakasu and its surrounding area are home to some of Fukuoka's premier art spots. Notable mentions include the Hakataza Theatre and the Fukuoka Asian Art Museum , both of which are linked directly to the Nakasu-Kawabata subway station.
To the south-east of Nakasu, Canal City provides one of Fukuoka's most unique shopping experiences, in a love-it-or-hate-it architectural wonder. The shopping center has recently completed a refurbishment of their iconic fountains and hosts daily light, and music shows that play across the fountains.
Not far from Canal City is Kushida-jinja, one of Fukuoka's most revered shrines. Here, you can enjoy the shrine's grounds and pick up an omikuji paper fortune slip. Next to the shrine's Nakasu Entrance is one of the ornately decorated floats used every year in the Hakata Gion Yamakasa Festival standing at a lofty 13 meters tall.
Old school shopping arcade
Another of these Yamakasa floats is located in the Nakasu-Kawabata Shopping Arcade. The shops in this arcade are a stark contrast to the hundreds of other shops that line the center of Nakasu.
Many of the shops here sell traditional Japanese products, clothing, paper, art and sweets. Most shops shut their doors before the nighttime action begins, so it's recommended to visit the arcade during the day.
Red lights at night
Nakasu also has a somewhat salacious reputation as home to Fukuoka's red-light district. Hidden away at the bottom end of the island are many less-than-PG institutions.
A word of caution to the eager nighttime reveler: Be sure you know what your money is being spent on before you enter a bar, as you may suddenly find your yen disappearing faster than you had anticipated.