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Fukuoka's Marinoa City Outlet Mall
Price: 1000 yen
Marinoa City is the largest outlet mall in Kyushu, with over 160 stores. I'm not a fan of shopping, but thought it might be a more affordable place to check while I was in the area. There's a huge Ferris Wheel and it's near the marina, so at least there would be fun scenery.
The mall is two stories and sort of indoor/outdoor depending on where, with at least covered walkways. It was a humid day so just walking around all day wasn't something I wanted to do, but there's so much it could take all day for serious shoppers. I went to maybe five places and was there for about two hours, which was longer than I expected.
Marinoa City Outlet is very convenient for foreigners and has lots of information in English and other languages – like the floor guides. If you bring your passport and show it when you make a purchase, some stores offer a free gift or discount. Most stores are tax free. I saw some offers of free gifts or additional discounts with minimum purchases.
Some of the stores are outlets but some are normal - the same prices as what you can find in any mall (like the Uniqlo and Nitori). The prices weren't incredible for what I looked at but there are probably some good deals there. I went early on a weekday, but it wasn't very crowded for August.
There is a game center and kids game area, plus a huge blue Ferris wheel (500 yen for adults), restaurants, cafes, and a nice view. I enjoyed a 'salt butter French Taiyaki' at Gindako, which was Taiyaki with a small amount of red bean paste but a flaky croissant type dough which was (as expected) salty and buttery.
From Hakata or Tenjin stations we can conveniently get there by bus, although it's about 40 minutes away. There are express buses on weekends. Nishitetsu bus number 303 leaves from Tenjin bus terminal at stop 1A. From there it costs 370 yen and takes 40 min. Marinoa City is the last stop and announcements are made in English, Korean, and Mandarin Chinese as well as Japanese.