- I was here: April 18, 2013.
- Number of days recommended: the only recommendable thing is to visit its neighbor Aoshima and continue.
- My score: 1/5.
As I usually clarify when I low score a city (1/5 means “I do not recommend going”), Miyazaki is not a dangerous or unpleasant city. On the contrary, it is an extremely calm, friendly capital, blessed with a good climate and with all kinds of comforts. I arrived here after a few hard days in Kirishima mountains, with rain, some cold and suffering for once in Japan the lack of support in transportation issues, so it seemed a good idea to stop to recover strength for one night. It is a good base to visit Aoshima and the Nichinan Coast, but itself it is not nice nor has attractions that you consider of interest from the tourist point of view.
- With frequent rows of tall, thin palm trees in their avenues, it seems like a bad attempt to copy Los Angeles, which is not exactly a good city to copy as far as aesthetics are concerned.
- Otherwise, it has the same downtown full of restaurants and shops, more in the Nishitachi area, the central part of the main Tachibanadori avenue, than many other Japanese cities, similar to those in Kyushu such as Kagoshima. We will not lack good food, places to shop, karaoke and others.
- But we will miss interesting temples to visit or relevant museums (the most “acclaimed” are Science Museum and History and Nature Museum). At least there is a remarkable park next to the promenade, where there is also the Botanical Garden. Tachibana Park, next to the bank of the Oyodo river, does not have anything special, to the point that I made some pictures there and I ended up deleting them.
WHEN TO GO
Miyazaki prefecture has a good climate in global terms. Winters are not very cold, being maximum temperatures around 14ºC and minimum temperatures of 4ºC. In summer, heat and humidity can be more annoying, since usual temperatures reach above 30°C and is the time with more rain, between 40 and 60% chance of daily precipitation. Therefore, autumn or spring can be the most recommended times, unless we intend to spend a few days at the beach.
As for the number of tourists, being Miyazaki outside the radar of foreigners, it can be more permissive. I went a few weeks before the Golden Week and there was almost nobody, apart from some buses of retired people in Aoshima. Avoiding this and other Japanese holiday periods, we should not find hardly any people.
WHERE TO EAT AND SLEEP
The best moments I remember in Miyazaki were:
- Eating in a Spanish restaurant very close to the bus and train stations whose name I do not remember and I do not know if it will still be open, although none of the workers spoke a word of Spanish. When in doubt, Tachibanadorinishi, the main avenue, about 700 meters west of these stations, has enough restaurants so that we do not have time to try all of them even if, for some strange reason and God forbid, we spend a month in the city.
- And sleep in Youth Hostel Sunflower Miyazaki (content not sponsored, I recommend it because I liked it, as if someone sponsored me…). It is a traditional building, which functions as a community center during the day, and in addition to the usual ones it has some old Japanese type rooms, it was like sleeping in a ryokan paying hostel price, and I even was alone in the room.
- Getting around in the city:
- From the train or bus station you can walk to any place of interest.
- Those who are traveling Miyazaki coast by bicycle can use it without problems.
- The Visit Miyazaki Bus Card can be a good option for those who intend to spend a few days in the city. It costs 1,000 ¥ and gives access to almost all urban buses, the bus to Aoshima and some that go through the scenic Nichinan Coast.
- Airport: it is very close to the city center, connected to it by a train that runs frequently and takes 10 minutes, in which the Japan Rail Pass can be used (those who do not have it will pay 350 ¥). There is also a bus, but it takes longer and is more expensive (440 ¥, 25 minutes). There are daily direct flights to:
- Tokyo: 26 a day, 1h35m, from ¥ 25,000, although you can find deals from ¥ 7,000.
- Osaka: 12 a day, 1h10m, approximately 20,000 ¥, although you can find deals from ¥ 5,000.
- Nagoya: 3 a day, 1h15m, from 23,000 ¥.
- Fukuoka: 13 a day, 50m, from ¥ 13,000.
- Okinawa: 1 a day, 1h35m, from ¥ 20,000.
- Seoul: 1 a day, 1h40m, from ¥ 21,000.
- Taipei: 1 a day, 2h35m, from ¥ 43,000.
- Train: Miyazaki is on the Nippo Main Line of Japan Rail, so most foreign visitors will arrive using their Japan Rail Pass.
- The bus station is in the same area as the train station, in the center of the city. It would be a bit absurd to use the buses having a JRP, unless we wanted to go to a specific little tourist town, since both the main close capitals and Aoshima can be reached by train, and to reach Takachiho we must get to Nobeoka before, which is also reached by train. Some common destinations are:
- Kagoshima: ¥ 2,780, 3h.
- Kumamoto: ¥ 4.630, 3h30m.
- Nagasaki: ¥ 6.690, 5h30m.
- Fukuoka: ¥ 4.630, 4h30m.