Japan trip Day 5: Yoshinogari Historical Park & Arita

  • Sumo

For full itinerary, check out my Japan Trip 2014: 9D8N Hiroshima & Kyushu Area

Allow me to complete my backlog travel posts before starting on this most recent one. Just another 2 more to go. 🙂

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Back to Kyushu days, my day started with travelling to Yoshinogari Historical Park from Saga.

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Along the way to the park.

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Yoshinogari is located about 13 km northeast of Saga city; a large and complex Yayoi archaeological site. Here in Yoshinogari Historical Park, ones get to experience the life and culture in the ancient Yayoi period of Japan. The Yayoi village is reconstructed into a live village and there are plenty of unique exhibits in this park. It serves great as an education purpose for people who wish to learn more about Yayoi. Also, the park wishes to spread the knowledge of this ancient civilization not only to the locals but world too.

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“The Yayoi period was a long era spanning approximately 600 years.
At the Yoshinogari ruins, structures and relics from every part of this lengthy period have been discovered. Moreover, these ruins are of extremely high academic value: at this site, we have found relics that clearly show the characteristics of the different stages of this era, allowing us to understand how society evolved during this period.”

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It is pretty interesting if you were into those architectural, archaeology and those ancient lives and cultures. You will learn about the rice cultivation; how was the development of “village” into “nation states” in early Yayoi period; how was the defences like in middle Yayoi period; how was the development in late Yayoi period which was during 1c. A.D. to 3c. A.D.

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To get here:
From JR Saga Station, take the ride to JR Yoshinogari Park Station (journey takes time approx. 12 mins). Follow the sign of Yoshinogari Historical Park along the way on foot and it takes about 15 mins to the Park entrance.

Fee: 400 yen (adult)
Opening hours and more details: Yoshinogari Historical Park

Day 5

We then filled up our tummies with soba and udon back in Saga Station and continued the journey to Kami-Arita and Arita.

Arita is a small town in Western Saga Prefecture. This is the place that is famed for the pottery – Arita-yaki (or Arita porcelain). The true birthplace of Japanese Porcelain is in Izumiyama which can be accessed from Kami-Arita. Izumiyama is known as the starting point of Arita. In the beginning of 17th century, a Korean potter named Ri Sam Pei found kaolin stone and made white porcelain for the first time in Japan. But then the resources are nearly exhausted nowadays and it became the “hakuji-ga-oka” Park.

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We dropped off from Kami-Arita station and toured around the area to check out Tombai-walls and Touzan Shrine.

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This is a very peaceful and quiet place (perhaps that was only on the weekday?!). There were not much car and humans running around. We strolled along the area and check out the back roads and Tombai-walls.

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Tombai-walls are built from the remnants of old kilns, tools used in the porcelain making process and fragments of old porcelains. The burned square bricks are used to build the inner walls of a kiln are known as “Tombai” in Japanese. Arita Porcelain Museum is located just around the corner.

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Touzan Shrine is dedicated to Emperor Ojin, Ri Sam Pei, the father of Arita Porcelain. The shrine was built around 1658. This is also a very special shrine where the “Torii” (archway at the entrance of the shrine, “koma-inu” (statues of guardian dogs), basins and vases are all made of Arita Porcelain.

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