Shōko Shūseikan


Adjacent to Sengan-en, this 1850s building, a Unesco World Heritage site as Japan's first modern factory, has been converted into a museum. Historical artefacts relate to the Shimazu family and early trade and industry – in fact, most of the 10,000 items are precious heirlooms, among them ancient scrolls, military goods and pottery.

The art of Satsuma kiriko (cut glass) has been revived at the Satsuma Kiriko Glassworks, behind the museum, and sold at the Shimadzu Satsuma Kiriko Gallery, next door to the museum.

Lonely Planet's must-see attractions

Nearby Kagoshima attractions

1. Sengan-en

0.17 MILES

In 1658, the 19th Shimazu lord laid out his pleasure garden on this hilly, rambling bayside property of groves, hillside trails and one of Japan's most…

3. Reimeikan

1.81 MILES

The Reimeikan has extensive displays on Satsuma history and ancient sword-making. It's inside the site of Kagoshima's castle, Tsurumaru-jō (1602); the…

4. Kagoshima City Museum of Art

2.01 MILES

The Kagoshima City Museum of Art has a small permanent collection of works by modern-day Kagoshima painters, as well as some 16th-century porcelains and…

5. Saigō Takamori Statue

2.03 MILES

Kagoshima's most famous historical figure, Saigō Takamori has been called the 'last samurai' and was known as both a loyalist and a rebel. His statue is…

6. Nishi Hongan-ji Kagoshima Betsuin

2.06 MILES

The current building of this large Buddhist temple near Tenmonkan dates from 1982 and was renovated in 2013. Inside, it's unlike most temples you may have…

7. Terukuni-jinja

2.18 MILES

This famous shrine is in memory of Shimazu Nariakira (1809–58), celebrated 11th leader of the Satsuma clan in the late Edo period. He is credited with…

8. St Francis Xavier Church

2.31 MILES

This landmark church, originally built in 1908 but rebuilt in 1999, honors the first Christian missionary to visit Japan.