Weekend Travel with SUNQ pass 2
Yufuin-Onsen, Kurokawa-Onsen and Mt Aso

Day2 : Kusasenri - Mt Aso

Kurokawa Insen bus stop for Beppu

After 3 times dipping in Kurokawa hot spring bath overnight, time to continue a journey with Cross Kyushu Bus !

Walking up another steep way, arrived at a bus stop, but doesn’t look different from the stop got off the bus yesterday ? Well, indeed it is the stop for other direction, for Beppu.

By crossing the road, make ready for ride on Cross Kyushu Bus for Kumamoto direction. This time, there is the sticker in front of and next to the door.

Cross Kyushu Bus for Kumamoto direction

Aso Eki and it's information desk
coin locker at Aso Eki

After less than a hour ride, the bus arrived at Aso Eki (JR Aso Station). There is Information desk and coin locker inside.

When you face to Aso Station, you can see Sanko Bus Office and bus stop on the left side of the station building. This Sanko bus company operate Mt. Aso Bus to get an access to nearly top of Naka-dake where you can observe active craters !!! Please don’t forget to take one printed timetable in English for Mt. Aso Bus at the office.

Sanko Bus Office
In the Sanko Bus Office, current status is indicated on the noticeboard

As it is 'active' craters, it is not possible to visit the craters if it's too active.

In the Sanko Bus Office, current status is indicated on the noticeboard. It is safe today !

Here it is ! No reservation is required for Mt. Aso Bus. ‘SunQ Pass’ sticker can be seen by the door.

Noreservation is required for Mt. Aso Bus

Kusasenri

'Kusasenri' means thousands squares of green grassy valley and there are Aso Cows and horses.

It is very peaceful setting if it is good weather !

Unfortunately it is very cloudy today, so decided to learn about Aso Volcano at the Museum.

Aso Volcano museum Do not forget show your ‘SunQ Pass’ when you buy an entrance ticket. You can get 100yen discount from normal price 860yen. Audio guide for English is available for rent free of charge, but they do not advise you about Audio guide in public because of number of the stock is limited, so just ask if it is available !
inside of Aso Volcano Museum

If you could not rent Audio guide, don't worry ! You can learn a lot without Audio Guide as information in English is available.

There is also a 17 minutes film showing the moment of Mt. Aso's eruption in the past at the hall on 2nd floor (3F in Japanese).

Restaurants in Kusasenri

After learning about Mt. Aso volcano, it is time to see real craters, but need to have a lunch !

There are several restaurants at Kusasenri.

At restaurant [New Kusasenri] and [Kusasenri Green Park], you can get 10% discount by showing your 'SunQ Pass'!

Restaurant [New Kusasenri] located very right hand side when you face to the buildings, looks good as recently refurbished. You can enjoy a lunch with view of Kusasenri.

After lunch, back to the Kusasenri Stop to continue bus ride to the last stop, Mt. Aso. From Mt. Aso bus stop(terminal), the rope way will take you to the craters !

The rope way to Mt Aso craters

Unfortunately, the Ropeway service is not available due to the maintenance purpose until July.

You can see what it is like in the link below.

http://www.kyusanko.co.jp/aso/lang_en/#01

There were replacement bus services to the craters, but I prefer to try Ropeway next time. Ropeway ticket costs 1200yen per Adult, 600yen per Child for return. The ticket office is located just near by the Ropeway platform. It takes about 1 hour for return Ropeway and strolling along the craters.
After the visit of the craters, what about Volcano Ash soft ice cream at the sweets counter at the bus terminal ?! Don’t worry, it is not made by Volcano Ash, but the greyish colour look like Volcano Ash.
Volcano Ash soft ice cream

That’s why they call it 'Kazanbai (Volcano Ash in Japanese) soft ice cream. The colour is made by black sesame seeds, so it is quite healthy.
You can get 20% off from normal price 350yen by showing your ‘SunQ Pass’ here !!

Well, it is nearly time to go down Mt. Aso by Mt. Aso Bus.
Aso Eki StopBack to the Aso Eki Stop to catch Cross Kyushu Bus toward to Kumamoto Kotsu Centre in Kumamoto city.

Then catch another Highway bus is called ‘Hinokuni-go’ to Fukuoka Tenjin Bus Centre to end this weekend trip.

This Highway bus between Fukuoka-Kumamoto is not required a reservation in advance
and very frequent services.

Highway bus between Fukuoka-Kumamoto

As the 'SunQ Pass' used this time was Northern Kyushu 3-days Pass, so it could be continued a journey for 1 more day from Kumamoto to Nagasaki for example. But it’s still value for money even for 2 days use !! (20JUN2014 Wakako Kondo)

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Route Map

Travel with SUNQ Pass route

Itinerary

Day 1 Yufuin-go
Dep 09:10 Fukuoka Tenjin Bus Centre
Arr 11:11 Yufuin Station Bus Terminal
Cross Kyushu Bus
Dep 14:50 Yufuin Station Bus Terminal
Arr 16:25 Kurokawa Onsen

Day 2 Cross Kyushu Bus
Dep 10:35 Kurokawa Onsen
Arr 11:23 Aso Eki (JR Aso Station)
Mt Aso Bus
Dep 11:45 Aso Eki (JR Aso Station)
Arr 12:14 Kusasenri
Mt Aso Bus
Dep 14:09 Kusasenri
Arr 14:15 Mt Aso
Mt Aso Bus
Dep 16:00 Mt Aso
Arr 16:30 Aso Eki
Cross Kyushu Bus
Dep 17:23 Aso Eki
Arr 19:02 Kumamoto Kotsu Centre
Hinokuni-go
Dep 19:10 Kumamoto Kotsu Centre
Arr 21:00 Fukuoka Tenjin Bus Centre

Single tickets price for the above journey
Fukuoka Tenjin Bus Centre -
Yufuin Station Bus Terminal
2880
Yufuin Station Bus Terminal -
Kurokawa Onsen
1750
Kurokawa Onsen - Aso Eki 990
Aso Eki - Kusasenri 570
Kusasenri - Mt. Aso 500
Mt. Aso - Aso Eki 650
Aso Eki - Kumamoto Kotsu Centre 1250
Kumamoto Kotsu Centre -
Fukuoka Tenjin Bus Centre
2060
Total ¥10650

SunQ 3 day Pass is only 8000 yen.
Saved 2650 yen even for 2 days trip!!!