Biking to Uminonakamichi and Around Shikanoshima
As fun as Fukuoka’s urban core is, it is also a good idea to get out and explore its natural side, as well as the surrounding beaches and islands. Being on the shores of the Genkai-nada Sea, the city boasts sandy beaches and pristine waters within a close distance of Hakata and its harbour.
Good for leisure and serious riders alike, a worthwhile trip during a visit to Fukuoka is a bike trip to and around Shikanoshima Island. This island is located across Hakata Bay and is actually connected by a narrow road to the Uminonakamichi Seaside Park. It is also reachable via a 30 minute ferry ride from Hakata Harbour. The area has gained popularity in recent years and rightly so, the beaches on this side of the bay are cleaner than their urban counterparts, and several natural entertainment options, as well as a marine park are quickly accessible.
For riders looking for a good challenge, the ride can start from Hakata by renting a bike at TAKATANIYA Bike Rental at 2,000 yen～ per road bike (which you will definitely need for this feat),
then bordering the whole bay on its east side.
Riding all through Uminonakamichi to Shikanoshima is a pleasure, but the ride through the industrial area prior to reaching this point could be rough as it cuts through a part of Fukuoka’s industrial area.
A much smoother alternative is to hop on board the municipal ferry at Hakata Harbour, enjoy the cruise across the bay, and start your ride around the natural seaside area of Shikanoshima village. Ferries depart frequently from the Hakata Passenger Terminal, with the first departure from Hakata at 7:05am and the last ferry returning from Shikanoshima departing at 10:20pm（Mon~Sat). Departure from Hakata on Sunday at 7am and the last ferry returning from Shikanoshima departing at 9:20pm. However, it is recommended to make the trip during the morning or early afternoon at the latest as the bike rental shop on the island is only open until 6pm.
Once off the boat at Shikanoshima Ferry Passenger Terminal, Shikashima Cycle is about a 5-minute walk away and the best place to rent your ride. The shop is closed on Tuesdays, but otherwise, it offers a good range of bicycles, from mini velos (1,500 yen for 3 hrs) to road bikes (4,000 for 3hrs), and other in between. This is not only a rental shop but also a cafe, making it a good location to also catch your breath during the ride.
With your ride secured you can then choose between three equally beautiful courses. The seaside course circumnavigates Shikashima along the coastline as the name implies. During this course you will run into several seafood restaurants, all recommended by the tourist information centre, and 20 minutes away from the starting point.
A second alternative especially for those with a fit pair of legs, is to take the climbing course riding up the island’s highest peak to enjoy the breathtaking view of Fukuoka from Shiomi Park. You can climb at your own pace and even walk part of the way if the course proves too challenging. A third option is to mix both of th courses. Completing the climbing course takes you directly to a restaurant area by the seaside. After a bite to eat here, you can continue along half of the seaside course all the way back Shikashima Cycle.
At this point, the best way to charge up your batteries before heading back to city is to grab a snack and head over to the nearby beach. Here you can relax while taking in the views of the Genkai-nada waters, or during the warmer months of the year, going for a swim.