© 2021 Karatsu Tourism Association

Explore Saga by Train

Enjoy Arita and Imari

the home of pottery,

scenic Nanatsugama Caves,

and spectacular seaside hot springs

~From/to Fukuoka Airport or Hakata Station~

Cruise around the famous Nanatsugama Caves and visit the lively morning market in Yobuko.

A guided tour of the historic pottery villages of Arita and Imari and experience pottery making.

Stay at arita huis for 2 nights and 3 days;

a modern hotel surrounded by Arita ware and a hot spring with a spectacular view of the seaside.

From JPY62,000!   

(For 2 adults per room)

Save more with the Go To Travel Campaign!

This tour by train and taxi takes you to the pottery villages and seaside towns in northwestern Saga prefecture. It is recommended for those who are not experienced in driving a rental car can participate in this tour. This course is available from/to Fukuoka Airport or Hakata Station, where is it more accessible than any other places.

In Karatsu, you will stay at a hot spring inn with a beautiful view of the seaside, cruise around the famous Nanatsugama Caves which is designated as a National Natural Monument, and visit the Yobuko morning market, one of the three largest morning markets in Japan. You will also have a chance to experience either a tea ceremony at a historical temple or a sake tasting at a local sake brewery, both of which are famous for Ureshino tea. Later on, you will visit Imari and Arita; two of the world-famous pottery villages in Saga. In Arita, which has been selected as one of Japan's top 20 heritage sites for the 20th century, we will take you to experience pottery making.

In Arita, we offer a stay at the Auberge-style Arita House, where you can enjoy a space surrounded by a variety of traditional, contemporary, and designer Arita ware, while being served with carefully selected meals.

Enjoy the tradition and culture of Saga prefecture in this tour plan.

 

Stay in Karatsu

Shioyu Naginoto

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Shioyu Naginoto was selected as one of the 10 best small ryokans in Japan by travel industry professionals. In the Michelin Guide Fukuoka, Saga, Nagasaki 2019 Special Edition, it was awarded with 3 Pavilions (very comfortable). Forget the time and enjoy the view of the ocean as you soak in the Shioyu Bath, a hot salt water bath with beautiful skin effect that is drawn from the beautiful sea water of Karatsu Bay, one of Japan's 100 most scenic spots. At the in-house bar Salon Tsuru, you can enjoy all the drinks you can drink, as well as light snacks such as cheese and chocolate. There are yukatas available in 19 designs for women and 5 designs for men. Enjoy an extraordinary stay in this spectacular ryokan.

  • Guests below 20 years old are not allowed to enter Bar Salon Tsuru by Japanese Law.

​Rooms

Run of house room

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Your room will be determined by the hotel, according to availability at the time of check-in. All rooms are equipped with original futon beds which were developed in pursuit of good sleeping quality and comfort. With the width of 140cm per person, it is guaranteed to give you a good night's sleep.

【Capacity: 2 guests】

Ocean view room

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The room overlooks the beautiful Karatsu Bay. When you open the window, you will be surrounded by the pleasant sound of waves and the sea breeze, creating a healing space.

【Capacity: 2 guests】

Dining

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The chef who was trained at a ryotei (traditional Japanese restaurant) and has devoted his life to Japanese cuisine, uses his skills and experience to prepare vividly looking Japanese Kaiseki cuisine. The table will be filled with fresh seafood caught from the Genkai Sea, Saga beef and Imari beef, Japanese Black beef, Wakakusu pork, Arita chicken, and many other delicacies.

  • The menu at each restaurant is subject to change without prior notice due to stocking conditions.

28 types of Japanese breakfast

28 hand-made Karatsu gourmet dishes with Okama cooked rice and healthy smoothie drink are served for every guest. This healthy breakfast made of 40 well balanced ingredients is very popular as the guests could taste many dishes.

Hot Spring

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The Shioyu Bath is rich in minerals from the Genkai Sea.

The open-air bath overlooks the beautiful Karatsu Bay, one of Japan's 100 scenic spots. While soaking in the bath with the sound of the waves as background music, enjoy the magnificent ocean during the day and the star-filled sky at night. The Shioyu began in the early Meiji era when seawater was drawn from the beach in Hamasaki in wooden tubs and boiled for bathing. More than 100 years since then, plenty of mineral-rich seawater from the Genkai Sea were pumped, filtered, heated, and poured it into the bathtubs without adding water.

The most famous thalassotherapy is salt bath, especially famous for its positive effects against various skin diseases. It is also called beauty spa as it maintains smooth skin touch and moistures on your skin. The body will be heated up from the core, and hard to feel chilly after the bath. It is very rare in the entire Japan.

Guests can use the family bath once (60 minutes) free of charge during the stay.

 

Stay in Arita

arita huis

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arita huis is an auberge-style hotel opened in April 2018 in Arita of Saga prefecture, the origin of porcelain boasting a history of over 400 years. Based on the concept of "a place for you to return," Arita House was named after the Dutch word "huis," meaning house, which played a major role in the development of Arita ware. There are 11 guest rooms where each room is equipped with a counter kitchen and a laid-back dining room.

The simple and sophisticated guest rooms with impressive concrete walls were designed to provide guests with an extraordinary but high-quality and relaxing stay. The room decor consisting of furnitures from Morodomi of Saga Prefecture, Arita ware, and sophisticated accessories provides a sense of warmth in the midst of sophistication. Enjoy freshly brewed coffee or sweet Ureshino tea in your room with the Arita ware cup.

  • There are flat type and maisonette type rooms, however it is not possible to choose the room type.

  • Rooms with double bed may be provided.

Dining

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The restaurant is an open space with 40 dining tables and 8 counter seats facing an open kitchen with a deep and relaxed atmosphere, where you can enjoy a course dinner decorated with seasonal local ingredients and served in a variety of Arita ware.

You can choose from three different themes: traditional, contemporary, and designers at the time of reservation. Experience the depth, history, and sophistication of Arita ware as you compare the dishes of different themes.

  • Non-smoking seats only.

 

Schedule & Price List

Day 1

Fukuoka Airport or Hakata Station - Karatsu

Arrive at Fukuoka Airport or Hakata Station

Take the train to Karatsu/Hamasaki (approximately 1 hour and 30 minutes).

After checking in at hotel on your own, proceed to Karatsu Station for a walking tour of Karatsu with a private guide.

You will visit Karatsu Castle, Hikiyama Exhibition Hall, Karatsu Shrine, and the former Takatori Residence.

  • No entrance to all the places.

Choices of cultural experiences

①Tea ceremony experience  

Enjoy a tea ceremony experience at the historical Jodo sect temple Kuhon-in, one of the oldest existing main halls in the city built in the Edo period.

②Local sake tasting experience  

While learning about Karatsu ware, you will be able to compare three kinds of local sake made from Karatsu's delicious rice and water. For those who do not drink alcohol, soft drinks are available.

 

Dinner and overnight stay at Shioyu Naginoto

 

<Schedule>

【 Meals: Breakfast ✗ | Lunch ✗ | Dinner ✓ 】

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© 2021 Karatsu Tourism Association

Notes

1. Train from Fukuoka Airport or Hakata Station to Hamasaki Station is not included.  

  • If departing from Fukuoka Airport, please make your own payment of JPY1,100 (adult) / JPY550 (children 6 to under 12 years old) per person on site.  

  • If departing from Hakata Station, please make your own payment of JPY1,060 (adult)/JPY530 (children 6 to 12 years old) per person on site.

2. Free hotel pick-up from Hamasaki Station to the hotel is available upon request.

3. When sightseeing in Karatsu, please arrange your own transportation between Hamasaki Station and Karatsu Station (approximately 11 minutes one way). Train fare is not included.

​4.The Kuhon-in Main Hall where the tea ceremony experience is held will be undergoing a renovation from August 2021. We apologize for any inconvenience and disturbance caused by the renovation.

Day 2

Karatsu - Yobuko - Imari - Arita

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© 2021 Karatsu Tourism Association

<Schedule>

09:00 After check-out, take a taxi to Nanatsugama Caves and Yobuko for sightseeing.

You will board a cruise that takes you to the scenic Nanatsugama which is designated as a national natural monument. Afterwards, you will visit the lively Yobuko morning market. Enjoy the heartwarming interaction with the ladies who have been selling their specialties for about 100 years.

14:26 Depart from Karatsu Station by train (JR Chikuhi Line).

15:17 Arrive at Imari Station.

Upon arrival at Imari Station, take a cab to Imari and Okawauchiyama.

Your private guide will take you on a walking tour of Okawauchiyama (appriximately 1 hour and 30 minutes).

Enjoy the traditional and photogenic townscape.

After the tour, take a train (Matsuura Railway Nishi-Kyushu Line) to Arita (approximately 30 minutes).

 

Dinner and overnight at arita huis

【 Meals: Breakfast ✓ | Lunch ✗ | Dinner ✓ 】

Notes

  • Taxi fare to/from Yobuko is included in the tour fee.

  • The Nanatsugama Caves Cruise will not be affected by drizzle or light rain, however it will be cancelled in case of heavy rain and rough sea condition. We kindly ask for your understanding.

  • Taxi fare for the round trip between Imari Station and Okawa Uchiyama area is included in the tour fee.

  • Transportation from Arita Station to the hotel is not included.

Day 3

Arita - Hakata Station or Fukuoka Airport

After check-out, take a walk around Arita with your private guide.

Enjoy the historic streets of Arita which have been selected as one of Japan's top 20 heritage sites for the 20th century.

After sightseeing, visit Kouraku Kiln on your own.

Choice of pottery experience

①Potter's wheel experience: Enjoy spinning and shaping your own pottery creation.

②Painting experience: Show off your artistic skills. ③Decal transfer experience: If you are not confident in your painting skills, you can use a variety of decal transfer to complete your original design.

After the pottery making experience, proceed to Arita Station on your own (approximately 5 minutes by taxi). After sightseeing, take the JR Kyushu Limited Express Midori from Arita Station to Hakata Station (approximately 1 hour and 20 minutes).

For those returning home by flight, take the subway from Hakata Station to Fukuoka Airport (approximately 5 minutes).

<Schedule>

【 Meals: Breakfast ✓ | Lunch ✗ | Dinner ✗ 】

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© Saga Prefectural Tourism Federation

Notes

1. Please take note of the following regarding the pottery experience.  

  • Depending on the status of your reservation and work, there may be a waiting time.  

  • You may be required to participate with other customers.  

  • Products will be shipped at a later date, and you will need to pay for the postal fee yourself.

2. Taxi fare to Arita Station after sightseeing is not included. Please arrange your own transportation.

3. The reservation time of Midori Limited Express can be adjusted according to your flight schedule.

4. Subway fare from Hakata Station to Fukuoka Airport is not included in the tour price. Please make your own payment of JPY260 (adult) / JPY130 (children 6 to 12 years old) per person.

【Number of participants】

 1 to 2 people

 

Access

Shioyu Naginoto (Karatsu)

arita huis (Arita)

By flight

From Fukuoka Airport: Take the Fukuoka Airport Subway Line to Meinohama Station (approximately 30 minutes), take the JR Chikuhi Line to Hamasaki Station (approximately 50 minutes), and walk approximately 10 minutes from the station.

 

By train

From Hakata Station: Take the Fukuoka Airport Subway Line to Meinohama Station (approximately 20 minutes), take the JR Chikuhi Line to Hamasaki Station (approximately 50 minutes), approximately 10 minutes walk from the station.

By train

Approximately 7 minutes by taxi from Arita Station.

 

Reservation

Please read the following before you proceed to the reservation.

<Additional information>

  • The rates do not include the transportation fee to/from Hakata Station or Fukuoka Airport.

  • Check-in time at Shioyu Naginoto is at 14:00, and check-out time is at 11:00.

  • Check-in time at arita huis is at 15:00, and check-out time is at 12:00.

  • Beverages are not included in the meal. Payment for drinks or additional orders should be made on site.

  • Your booking confirmation will be sent within 1-2 business days.

  • We will ask you to complete the payment after the booking has been confirmed.

  • You may be asked to present your residence card as proof of identification upon check-in.

  • Please be sure to check "the Go to Travel compliance policy" in advance.

<Cancellation policy>

  • Until 15 business days prior to the reserved date: Free of charge

  • From 14 business days prior to the reserved date: 30% of the total amount

  • From 7 business days prior to the reserved date: 60% of the total amount

  • From 4 business days prior to the reserved date: 100% of the total amount