Mojiko Retro [門司港レトロ]

Kanmon Straits and Moji Port
Kanmon Straits & Moji Port
Photo by Mojiko Retro Information

Moji Port and Mojiko Retro
Moji Port & Mojiko Retro

"Mojiko" means "Moji Port".
The last "o" in the word is pronounced long, so it is read as "Mojikô".

Kitakyushu city is a large city located in the northern end of Fukuoka Prefecture.

Moji district is in the northeast part of Kitakyushu city.

It faces the central area of Shimonoseki city in Yamaguchi Prefecture across narrow Kanmon Straits.

Since the end of the 19th century, Mojikô was the terminal station of the railway in Kyushu Island.
At that time, the name of the station was "Moji".

In 1901, the railway ferry between Mojikô and Shimonoseki started operating.
So Mojikô station became the important junction connecting Honshu Island and Kyushu Island.

But Kanmon Tunnel running under Kanmon Straits was open for railway in 1942.
Honshu Island and Kyushu Island had been connected by this tunnel.
(The tunnel for car was open in 1958.)

The exit of the railway tunnel was set up about 5 km south of Mojikô station.
So, the main railway junction was moved to the south.

The station of new junction was called "Moji", and the name of original terminal was changed to "Mojikô".

But the area around Mojikô is the center of Moji district, there were many buildings built in the best period in the area.

Mojiko Retro by Moji Port
Mojiko Retro by Moji Port

Mojiko Retro Train
Mojiko Retro Train
Photo by Railstation.net

Since 1988, this area with many old buildings was re-created as a town of the early 20th century for visitors, and was named "Mojiko Retro".

The main area of Mojiko Retro is about 1 km along Moji Port.
There is Mojiko terminal station in the center of the area.

About a dozen of old buildings are in the area, and some new buildings such as hotel and commercial complex has been built since the 1990s.

From Mojikô station, small sightseeing train is operated.
It runs on a former freight line to the north for about 2 km.

The local food in this area is Yaki-curry.
It is made by putting curry sauce on rice, topping it with cheese and egg and baking it in an oven like gratin.

It is said that the dish was invented by a cafe in Mojiko area around the 1960s.

Mojiko station
Mojiko station
Photo by Railstation.net

Kyushu Railway History Museum
Kyushu Railway History Museum
Photo by Railstation.net

Map of Mojiko Retro

Mojikô station (門司港駅) is the terminal station of JR Kagoshima Line, and has been used as the main station of Moji district.

It is the central spot of Mojiko Retro.

The building was built in 1914, and is designated as a national important cultural property.

Kyushu Railway History Museum (九州鉄道記念館) is a museum about the railway in Kyushu Island.
It is in the site of Mojikô station and is about 450 meters south of the station.

The building constructed in 1891 was the headquarters building of former Kyushu Railway Company.

Several rail vehicles used in Kyushu are displayed, and there is a small-scale railroad park where we can get on the mini-trains and drive the train.

Former O.S.K. Lines Ltd.
Former O.S.K. Lines Ltd.
Photo by Mojiko Retro Information

Former Moji Mitsui Club
Former Moji Mitsui Club
Photo by Railstation.net

There are a few old buildings just to the northeast of Mojikô station.

Former O.S.K. Lines Ltd. (旧大阪商船) was the building of a shipping company.

The building was built in 1917, and had been used until 1991.

Former Moji Mitsui Club (旧門司三井倶楽部) was the building of a social hall for Mitsui Bussan company (a general trading company).

The building was built in 1921, and has a museum and a restaurant.
Albert Einstein (a worldwide physicist, 1879-1955) stayed in a room on the second story in 1922.

And, Kaikyo Plaza (海峡プラザ) is a commercial complex for visitors opened in 1999.
It has souvenir shops and restaurants.

Blue Wing Moji
Blue Wing Moji
Photo by Kitakyushu City

Observatory in Mojiko Retro Highmart
Observatory in Mojiko Retro Highmart
Photo by Mojiko Retro Information

There is a drawbridge Blue Wing Moji completed in 1993 by the port.
It is for pedestrians, and is raised six times a day.

We can see Kanmon Straits and Kanmon Bridge around the bridge.
It is said that the couple who cross the bridge will be happy.

The visitors can go to the north part of Mojiko Retro by crossing the bridge.

Former Moji Customs (旧門司税関) is near the north side of Blue Wing Moji bridge.

It is a building for the custom office built in 1912, and had been used until 1927.
It was destroyed partly by air raids in 1945, but it was restored in 1995.

There are the new buildings to th north of Blue Wing Moji.

Minato House is a market for visitors opened in 1998.
It has the shops of fresh sea food of Kitakyushu and Shimonoseki.
And there are the other souvenir shops and a large restaurant.

Mojiko Retro Highmart is a high-rise condominium 127 meters high completed in 1999.
The highest floor is the observatory for visitors, and we can enjoy the nice view from there.

How to get here

From Kokura (the station of Shinkansen) to Mojikô, about 13 minutes by local train on JR Kagoshima Line.

From Hakata, about 1 hour and 30 minutes by rapid train on JR Kagoshima Line.

Hotels around Mojiko Retro

Hotels around Mojiko Retro

Other Tourist Attractions in Fukuoka Prefecture

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