Shopping in Arita / Imari
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Pottery Kiln Tour at Kouraku in Arita
- Though its population certainly drinks its fair share, Japan produces much more than alcohol. For a little something different, head to Arita in Saga Prefecture to see what a century and a half of craftsmanship looks like via Kouraku’s Pottery Kiln Tour. It’s brief (an average tour takes only 30 minutes), but the best part comes afterwards: an all-you-can-take 90-minute pottery hunt. Kouraku lets you go full-Indiana Jones, digging through piles of pottery with gloves and a flashlight in a search for buried treasure. If it fits in your basket, it’s yours!
Pottery Tour and Treasure Hunt at Kouraku (Happy) Kiln
- To learn about the history of Japanese ceramics and the pottery-making process while gaining a unique insight into village’s culture, there is no better way than a detailed tour of a kiln. In Arita, there are only two kilns are open for tourists to explore, Gen-emon Kiln and Kouraku Kiln (also known as the Happy Kiln). While both tours are equally fascinating, Kouraku’s tour is offered in various languages, making the experience more accessible for foreign visitors. These days the Kouraku Kiln also offers visitors the opportunity to purchase Arita ware cheaply in the form of a treasure hunt. For a 5,000 yen or 10,000 yen fee pottery hunters are armed with a flashlight, basket, gloves and are given 90 minutes to fit as much pottery as you like into your basket. If you’re an avid collector, the 10,000 yen opportunity gives you access to a more exclusive selection of ceramics. Kouraku Kiln During the 15 to 30 minute tours, Pimenta and his team offer their extensive knowledge on pottery peppered humour as they guide visitors step by step through the entire pottery-making process. While on the tour you’ll witness the local experts honing their craft and even get the chance to step into one of the ovens, of course when not in operation. Kouraku Kiln Having been producing ceramics in this location for over 150 years, the facility has now amassed a large backlog of stock which for some mysterious reason has gone unsold. As a way to clean out a little, the kiln now offers tourists their unique treasure hunt experience. Visitors are given the chance to stock up on as much ceramics as they can fit in a grocery basket. Once the factory tour is finished, “hunters” are guided to a warehouse housing crates over-flowing with ceramics. Equipped with a plastic basket, a pair of gloves, and a flashlight, you will get two hours to grab as many pieces as you can. Kouraku Kiln ©NAVITIME JAPAN. Travel Info Check out our travel tips to make your trip better!
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武雄でランチをし、出てきた器を見て直ぐにこちらへ伺いました。有田の器がとても進化していると感じ驚きました。お料理がまた違って見えるのではないかと思います。 ギャリーを拝見した後にその器を使った併設のカフェへ。とてもおしゃれです。そして広くゆったりしています。 パリのラデュレのオリジナルティーもありました。 ランチもあるとこ事で、次回はお昼に伺いたいとおもいます。 お店の隣に車が停められます。
- Gallery Arita
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We were recommended to come here by the tourist centre. There did not seem a lot open when we arrived on the Tuesday afternoon following a national holiday on the Monday. We both had the fried...
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The ceramics festival starts April 29th. The Fukagawa shops are a 40 minute walk from Arita station. There is only a shuttle bus during the festival. Good thing - you can ask them to call a cab for...
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Away from the fast-paced cities of mainland Japan, Kyushu’s Saga prefecture offers quaint towns and cities known for their traditional crafts, particularly ceramics. Rich in kaolin (a type of clay), Saga became the homeland of Arita ware, a delicate, decorative porcelain that is now celebrated worldwide and can be discovered in the towns of Arita, Imari, and Karatsu.
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