5 Places to Visit in Fukui

Rarely heard as a travel destination, Fukui is one of Japan's hidden gems that offers you a calm yet enchanting side of the country. Here are the five top places you should visit when you are there.

1. Learn About History at The Dinosaur Museum

Fukui is famous for the dinosaur because it is the Japanese prefecture where the most dinosaur fossils were found. Built in the middle of old villages, the dinosaur museum is an interesting four story building with four classifications of the area inside: exhibition, education, service, and research.

The tour of the museum starts from the basement area, where you may wander around looking at dinosaurs diorama and fossils. The display of the dinosaurs is arranged in such a line that will lead the visitors to walk around without missing anything. The exhibition continues up to the second floor, the location of earth science and history of life exhibition. Other than the main exhibition area, visitors may also experience the Dino lab where you can touch the diorama and the Fossil Preparation Lab where you can observe researchers working on new fossils found in Fukui and around Japan. Before leaving the museum, a souvenir shop on the fourth floor that has various choices of goods is worth a visit.

2. Enjoy the Natural Beauty of Tojinbo Cliffs

Tojinbo is a unique cliff that was carved by the waves somewhere in the Jurassic area. The rocky coastline is one of a kind that you can found nowhere else in Japan. Although there is a trail for visitors to walk, there is no restriction for people to climb up to the top of the cliff, exploring even the steepest area. Even though it is quite challenging to walk above the rocks, the magnificent view of the ocean from there is absolutely stunning. The best route to explore: come by walking from the natural park from the south, enjoying the coastline view and hidden places before arriving at the Tojinbo Cliff itself. While you are in the area, do not miss good seafood served at the local restaurant. For those who are up to explore quirky food, try the squid-ink flavored ice cream which is their local specialty.

3. Get Relaxed at Awara Onsen

As bathing in a hot tub of water is a big part of Japanese culture, having a large area for a bath is a luxurious opportunity for them. Awara Onsen offers a resort town, filled with about 20 hotels and ryokans (Japanese style inn), which has a facility of public hot spring bath for their visitors. Hot spring water is believed to have a healing effect, as it contains minerals from nature. It is a good way to relax your body as well as your mind, away from the hectic work and matters. Since located in the middle of a town, unlike another onsen, the hot spring resort does not have a natural view to be enjoyed while taking a bath. However, they have created a beautiful artificial natural scenery around the hot spring area, thus it is still enjoyable and it does feel like you blend in with nature.

Japanexperterna.se on Flickr

4. Explore Japanese History at Maruoka Castle

Maruoka Castle is a castle that considered as the oldest castle in the country. Built on a top of a hill, the castle sometimes called “mist castle” as legend said there used to be a thick mist hiding the castle from enemies. Being reconstructed, the castle keeps its wooden interior to preserve feature from the original castle. Other than displays and diorama, the castle also has enchanting view that can be enjoyed by visitors who made it to the third floor.

Maruoka Castle. Photo by baku13 on Wikimedia

5. Experience Japanese Culture at Daihonzan Eiheiji Temple

Eiheiji is a complex temple. Consisting of more than 70 buildings that are connected to each other. Visitors coming to Eiheiji will be greeted at the entrance, where there is a short explanation about the temple before they are allowed to explore the temple by themselves. Inside the complex, there is the Buddha Hall, the main lecture hall, the founder’s hall, and the famous Sanmon Gate. The temple is especially beautiful during autumn, when the maple leaves in the garden turn into yellow, orange, and red foliage.

Daihonzan Eihiji Temple. Photo by Hiroaki Kikuchi on Wikipedia

In Conclusion

Fukui is a perfect place to visit for people who want to have a short getaway to escape the city vibes. To enjoy the places aforementioned, spending at least 2 days and 1 night in the prefecture is recommended. Going solo, duo, or in a pack, it’s still fun to experience the city. Enjoy Fukui!

senngokujidai4434 on Flickr


1. Fukui Prefectural Dinosaur Museum

Address: 51-11 Murokocho-Terao, Katsuyama City, Fukui, 911-8601

Phone: 0779-88-0001

Hours: Monday - Sunday, 09:00 - 17:00

Fee: 720 yen (regular), 460 yen (high school and college students), 260 yen (elementary and junior high school students)


Take the Echizen Railway from Fukui Station to Katsuyama Station (770 yen), then transfer to a community bus heading to Nagaoyama. Get off at the Kyoryu Hakubutsukan-mae bus stop in front of the museum (100 yen for a day pass). The alternative is to take a taxi from Katsuyama Station to the museum for 1800 yen one way ride.

2. Tojinbo Cliff


From Fukui Station: Take the Echizen Railway from Fukui to Mikuniminato Station (770 yen). Then take a bus from Mikuniminato to Tojinbo (190 yen).
From Awara onsen: Take an hourly bus between Awara Onsen and Tojinbo for 750 yen one way.

3. Awara Onsen


Take Echizentetsudo-Mikuni-Awara line from Fukui Station to Awara-Yunomachi Station (670 yen). The Awara Onsen Resort is within walking distance from the station, about 400 meters. Depend on where you are going to stay, alternatively, you can take a taxi ride to your hotel/ryokan.

4. Maruoka Castle

Address: 1-59 Maruoka-chō Kasumi-chō, Sakai-shī, Fukui, 910-0231

Hours: Monday – Sunday, 08:00 – 17:00

Closed: No closing days

Fee: 300 yen


• From Fukui Station, take JR Hokuriku Line to Maruoka Station (240 yen), then transfer to a bus bound for Honmaruoka (200 yen). Get off at Honmaruoka bus stop.
• From Fukui Station, take a bus bound for Honmaruoka. Get off at Honmaruoka bus stop (640 yen). Then take a walk for 5-10 minutes to the castle.

5. Daihonzan Eiheiji Temple

Address: 5-15 Shihi, Eiheiji, Yoshida District, Fukui 910-1228

Hours: Monday – Sunday 04:00 – 17:00

Closed: No closing days

Fee: 500 yen


• From Fukui Station, take direct bus to Eiheiji for 720 yen one way.
• Take Echizen Railway from Fukui Station to Eiheiji-guchi Station (450 yen) and then transfer to a bus (410 yen).

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