The southernmost of Japan’s main islands, Kyushu, enjoys a fantastic climate bordering on the subtropical. Miyazaki Prefecture lies on its southeast side, and so it benefits from the warmest weather anywhere in Japan besides Okinawa.
In vacation terms, this translates to excellent surf and reliable beachgoing weather. In food terms, it translates instead to fantastic citrus fruits, chilled soups, and unique local seafood. If you haven’t already started checking flight prices, I’m shocked.
Miyazaki City is the capital, and with about 365,000 people it’s on the smaller side as far as Japanese cities go. What it doesn’t lack, however, is history; this area is said to have housed the palace of the mythical first emperor of Japan. Although this is folklore rather than fact, the importance of the story to Miyazaki is huge. Here you can explore coastal cave shrines dedicated to the ancient emperor, and even participate in festivals that celebrate Japan’s mythical founding father.
It’s not all about the history though — modern Miyazaki has plenty more going for it, including one of the most beautiful waterfalls in the country, and seaside resorts to give the Okinawans a run for their money.
We also can’t finish without mentioning Miyazaki beef: one of the top types of black wagyu in the country. If you, or anyone you love, is a steak lover, you owe it to yourself to head southward to try this incredible meat at its source.