Discover Kagoshima: Heritage, Customs & Festivals

Discover Kagoshima: Heritage, Customs & Festivals

Discover Kagoshima: Heritage, Customs & Festivals

Kagoshima, located on the southwestern tip of the island of Kyushu in Japan, is a city rich in heritage, customs, and vibrant festivals. With its stunning natural beauty, hot springs, and historical landmarks, Kagoshima offers a unique travel experience for those seeking to immerse themselves in Japanese culture. Let's explore the highlights of this captivating city.


Kagoshima's heritage stretches back centuries, and the city is often referred to as the "Naples of the East" due to its similarities with the Italian city. One of the most iconic landmarks is Sakurajima, an active volcano that overlooks the city. Visitors can take a ferry across Kagoshima Bay to hike up the volcano and witness breathtaking views of the city and surrounding coastline.

Another must-visit heritage site is Sengan-en, a traditional Japanese garden that has been designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site. This meticulously landscaped garden offers a tranquil escape from the bustle of the city, with its perfectly manicured lawns, ponds, and historic buildings.

For history enthusiasts, a visit to the Kagoshima City Museum of Art is a must. This museum showcases a wide range of artwork, including traditional Japanese paintings, sculptures, and ceramics. Visitors can learn about the rich artistic traditions of Kagoshima and how they have evolved over time.


Kagoshima is known for its warm and friendly locals who uphold traditional customs and values. One such custom is the practice of yukata-wearing, particularly during the summer months. Yukata is a lightweight, cotton kimono that is often worn by both men and women during festivals and special occasions. Visitors can rent a yukata and experience the joy of walking through the streets of Kagoshima in this traditional attire.

Another fascinating custom in Kagoshima is the art of Satsuma kiriko, a glassware technique that originated in the region. Satsuma kiriko glassware is known for its intricate patterns and vibrant colors. Visitors can witness the craftsmanship firsthand by visiting local workshops and even try their hand at creating their own unique piece of Satsuma kiriko.

Kagoshima is also famous for its tea culture, with the region producing some of the finest green teas in Japan. Visitors can participate in tea ceremonies to learn about the art of tea preparation and gain insights into the Japanese tea culture. The serene atmosphere and the meticulous ritual of the tea ceremony offer a profound cultural experience.


Kagoshima is home to a multitude of vibrant festivals that showcase the city's lively spirit and rich cultural traditions. One of the most popular festivals is the Kagoshima Ohara Festival, held in October. This festival features colorful processions, lively music, and traditional dances. Visitors can immerse themselves in the festive atmosphere and witness the locals' exuberant celebration.

The Hanamiyama Festival, held in spring, is another must-see event. This cherry blossom festival takes place at Hanamiyama Park, where visitors can enjoy a picturesque scenery of blooming cherry blossoms in various shades of pink. The festival also includes traditional performances and local food stalls, creating a truly enchanting experience.

For seafood lovers, the Kagoshima Fish Festival is not to be missed. Held in March, this festival showcases an array of fresh seafood caught in Kagoshima's surrounding waters. Visitors can sample a variety of delicious seafood dishes and learn about the region's fishing heritage.

With its rich heritage, fascinating customs, and lively festivals, Kagoshima is a city that offers a delightful blend of tradition and modernity. Whether you're exploring historical landmarks, participating in traditional customs, or joining in the lively festivities, Kagoshima promises an unforgettable travel experience.