Photo of Okayama

About Okayama

Okayama, the capital city of Okayama Prefecture, lies on the coast of Japan's Chügoku region. The city is best-known known for ts notorious Korakuen garden, one of the finest examples of traditinoal Japanese horticulture, and the magnificent 16th-century castle, which dates all the way back to the Edo period when Okayama was founded. The best places to stay in Okayama boast superb views of these wonderful spots.

It's also well-known across Japan for being the setting of the historic Momotarō fable, in which an infant boy is discovered in a peach! You'll find plenty of references to Momotarō, a legendary hero of justice here in Okayama, or to his trusty companions: a dog, a pheasant and a monkey.

Okayama's traditional cuisine relies heavily on sushi rice and fish from the Seto Inland Sea, whilst you can also enjoy lovely sweets called Kibi Dango. If you visit in August then you can partake in the notorious Momotarō Matsuri festival and enjoy the wonderful traditional dances on display.

Many parts of Okayama slightly belie modern perceptions of Japan, what with its reputation as being an ultra-modern, high-tech and almost futuristic country. Here, you'll find plenty of traditional arts and culture, a taste of Japan as it used to be - and still is, to some extents and in some parts. This has the effect of giving it a slightly old-worldly charm - something that you're bound to notice upon visiting the city.

What Not To Miss

  • The stunning Korakuen Garden has been voted as one of Japan's top three traditional gardens. It's gorgeous year-round, and is a peaceful haven right in the midst of the city.
  • Head to Okayama Castle and hear all about the region's past, whilst you can also enjoy stunning views of the city from the top floor.
  • Culture-vultures should definitely head to both Kibitsu Shrine and Inujima Seirensho Museum.

Consider booking well in advance as the best places to stay in Okayama get quickly booked up.

The best places to stay in Okayama

For Okayama

  • Okayama Koraku Hotel boasts spacious and contemporary accommodation right in the city centre. Make the most out of its wonderful location to see all that the city has to offer!

For nearby Kurashiki

  • Ryokan Kurashiki boasts traditional Japanese accommodation (though Western-style beds are available) and splendid cuisine. With no kids allowed, it's a top spot for a romantic break.
  • Tsurugata Ryokan, set in a traditional building dating back to the Edo period, is a lovely stay in the heart of Kurashiki's historic centre. Uttely charming.

For an apartment or holiday home

If you'd prefer the privacy of a self-catering option then browse through the wide variety available online with our partner, Booking.com.

Travel Information

  • Weather-wise, you're best off visiting in July - the average temperature hovers between 25-33°C.
  • Fly into Tokyo's Narita or Haneda Airport before taking a connecting flight on to Okayama Airport.
  • If you fancy exploring more of the area then consider hiring a car with Rentalcars.

Still not sure?

Best Hotels in Okayama

  • Okayama Koraku Hotel Okayama (Kita-Ku) 211 rooms from £68

    Located in the heart of the city, Okayama Koraku Hotel offers spacious and contemporary accommodation. Each room comes with a flat-screen TV and laptops can also be rented at reception. Warm and friendly English speaking staff. Enjoy a Japanese set menu at lunch and dinner. An excellent value stay!

    Great walks  -  Head off on a scenic walk around Kōrakuen gardens
    Sights nearby  -  Okayama castle and Ikeda Zoo are located nearby
    Romantic  -  Good for couples.
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  • Tsurugata Ryokan Okayama (Kurashiki-shi) 13 rooms from £140

    Tsurugata Ryokan is located in Kurashaki Bikan Historical Quarter. This historical building from the Edo period offers traditional accommodation with tatami (woven-straw floors) and futon bedding. Enjoy a relaxing massage and lovely kaiseki cuisine! A quiet and charming stay in a wonderful spot.

    Local exploring  -  Tsurugata Ryori Ryokan is a 2-minute walk from Ohara Museum of Art
    Great walks  -  Take a long walk around the beautifully scenic Shinkeien Garden
    Sights nearby  -  The historic buddhist Kanryuji Temple is just around the corner
    Full of character
    Recommended by  -  Michelin Travel
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  • Ryokan Kurashiki Okayama (Kurashiki-Shi) 8 rooms from £308

    Located in the city's historic merchant's quarter, Ryokan Kurashiki offers spacious and traditional Japanese accommodation with the odd Western-style bed. Let the wonderfully preserved architecture take you back in time and enjoy absolutely splendid cuisine! A peaceful and elegant city stay.

    Sights nearby  -  The historic buddhist Kanryuji Temple is just around the corner and well worth a visit
    Great walks  -  Take a long walk around the beautifully scenic Shinkeien Garden
    Restrictions on children  -  No children under 12 allowed
    Full of character
    Check Availability