How to go to cat paradise “AINOSHIMA” from Hakata, Fukuoka
There are three cat islands in Fukuoka prefecture as below.
- AINOSHIMA (AISHIMA)…Kasuya-gun, Shingu-town
- UMASHIMA…Kitakyushu-city, Kokura-kitaku
- AINOSHIMA… Kitakyushu-city, Kokura-kitaku
The first one is known as 5 places where cats outshine tourist attractions by CNN. Ainoshima is easy to access from Hakata. It cost only 840 yen (one way) from Hakata.
Ainoshima is small island but there are cafe, small restaurant and souvenir shop.You can enjoy staying besides meeting cats in there.
About Ainoshima island
Ainoshima is 8km from Shingu port. It is famous island as “CAT PARADISE” but also fishing spot. The island is approximately 1.2k㎡, circumference is about 8km. The population is about 300 and households are 150. There is elementary school and junior high school in island.
How to go to Ainoshima from Hakata station
Hakata station →JR Fukkohdaimae →Shingu port → Ainoshima
Take JR train from Hakata station and get off at Fukkohdaimae (福工大前). You can take both of rapid and local train. It’s about 15 mins by rapid train, 20 mins by local train. Train fare is 280 yen (one way). There are two exits at Fukkohdaimae after you go through a ticket gate. Go out of the station from North exit (北口).
There is bus stop just in front of the north exit. Take the community bus from there. Take route 1 bus (Island line,相らんど線 ) and get off at “Ainoshima-tosenba (相島渡船場). You can check bus time table here. It’s about 10 mins from Fukkohdaimae station. Bus fare is 100 yen (one way).
By the way, there is Family mart (convenience store ) next to north gate of Fukkodaimae station. There is no convenience store in Ainoshima, so if you need water or some snack it’s better to buy here.
After take off bus at Ainoshima-tosenba, you will see building 「待合所(waiting place) 」,that is the place you can buy ferry ticket. Also there is chairs and restroom in the building.
There are 6 ferry lines a day during April to September, 5 lines a day during October to March. You can check ferry’s time table here. Ferry fare is 460 yen (one way). It’s about 20 mins to Ainoshima by ferry.
By the way, there is parking space at Ainoshima ferry port in the case you rent a car. Parking fee is 500 yen within 12 hours.
I went to Ainoshima on August, it was weekend and good weather so there were so many tourist.
You will be able to see some cats as soon as you get off ferry.
According to the information I got in advance , which said there are about 100 cats in Ainoshima. But I felt there are more than 200 cats there.
Cats seem that they get used to people. So they didn’t ran away even we were close to them. I was able to touch them. They were so cute!
Also islanders are get used to tourist so they didn’t complain even we passed the narrow street next to their houses. But please make sure not to be noisy when you go through residential area.
There are small restaurant ,SUSHI place ,cafe and souvenir shop in Ainoshima. You can spend a day there spending time with cat and have lunch or coffee and sweets.
Also you can rent bicycle as you can enjoy cycling around island. (Details are here.)Here is brochure which Ainoshima’s junior high school students made. How about making your own day trip to Ainoshima ?
*Please let me know if I make mistake in English. Thank you.