Arita in Saga Prefecture is often regarded as the birthplace of pottery in Japan. It may not come as a surprise then that one of the shrines in the town is adorned with pottery as far as the eye can see. Tozan Shrine is a fascinating spot to visit, and the ways that they've worked porcelain into many of the shrine's features is incredibly impressive.
One of the shrine's iconic features is the torii arch which is made from Arita-yaki (the broad term for pottery produced in the region), and you'll even find statues that are typically made from stone made of porcelain. Even the ema, or traditional plaques used to write wishes and prayers on, are made of porcelain here. If you have a goshuin, or shrine stamp book, they will stamp it for a 300 yen donation.
Tozan Shrine is located in Arita, a short walk from Kami-Arita Station on the JR Sasebo Line. If you're headed there by private vehicle, there is a small free parking lot just down from the main entrance.
I'm an expat who has lived abroad for almost a decade, including 7 years in Japan. I've also visited 44 of 47 prefectures and hope to get to the last three someday! I'm particularly fond of exploring off the beaten path destinations, gardens, and tea houses, and have a real interest in Japan's gr...