There is a hidden pottery village located in the mountainous area of Imari Town in Saga Prefecture. It is such a gem of a location that not many people know about it, except of course those who are ceramic lovers. For these people the location is 7th heaven as it is so peaceful and tranquil, at times it feels as though one has stepped back in time.
Okawachiyama which translates as Big River in the Mountains doesn't feel like a place designed for the 21st Century. Time runs a lot slower in these parts of the countryside and its a place where you can forget about life for a half a day and feel the time slip of the region.
On this particular day, I arrived a little later than I wanted to. It was a weekday and there was hardly anyone around so basically I had the whole village to myself. I have been told that this isn't the case on weekends when quite a lot more tourists and visitors from around Kyushu congregate in the pottery regions of Kyushu looking for that one special piece that will make their ceramic collection complete. Of course for those die hart fans of all things ceramic, this is never the case! You will never be satisfied with what you have and you will always be looking for the next piece.
I will plan another trip over the following months to get a better lay of the land. Even if the village is busier I am sure it will still be a quiet and quaint place to explore all the nook and crannies in great detail.
Please click on this link to see Okawachiyama Village on a map:
Please click on the photos below to enlarge:
Many different types of ceramics
The main bridge is very decorative
Looks of workshops to explore
Plenty of side streets to explore
Ceramic murals are everywhere
This is a potters village
A special piece
Many shops selling their wares
Pottery exhibits are plentiful
One of the more narrow entrances
As quaint as it gets!
The quality is exceptional
Please click on these videos below to see more about Okawachiyama, the quaint hidden pottery village: