The Art of the Seto Inland Sea: An Artistic Journey from Traditional to Contemporary (2-nights 3-days)

Since the year 2000, the Seto Inland Sea has become a haven for artistic expression and many contemporary artists have made visits to the islands of the Seto Inland Region, including Shōdoshima, Naoshima, Teshima, and more. The art exhibits spread across the region incorporate the very sea itself through numerous exhibits which seamlessly blend into the ever-present island scenery.
During the Edo Era (1603-1868) Shōdoshima enjoyed a privileged position along maritime trade routes and produced soy beans, wheat, and salt all of which are needed in for the production of soy-sauce. And by the late Edo Era (1603-1868) the volume of production actually exceeded the available firewood needed to produce the required salt. However, the culture of soy-sauce brewing remains strong on Shōdoshima were the traditional methods of soy-sauce production using wooden vats still survives.
Shōdoshima is actually one of the few places across Japan that has preserved these traditional brewing methods by passing down the culture through the generations. These breweries are known across Japan as well as the world for the quality of their work and the breweries and methods themselves are widely considered to be a form of art in their own right.

“Ōtani-yaki” style pottery ware is said to have originated from the late Edo Era (1780) when the craftsman Bun’emon came to Shikoku to from Bungo Province (current day Ōita Prefecture) to do the 88-Temple Pilgrimage. While here he visited Ōtani Village and created “rokuro” style pottery fired in red clay, a first for the island. The technique used for Ōtani-yaki pottery is known as “neirokuro.” Literally meaning something like “sleeping pottery wheel,” this technique requires and assistant to lie under the workbench and spin the pottery wheel with his feet. This technique is fairly rare in a world where machinery is widely used in the production of pottery and the “neirokuro” technique is considered to be part of the region’s traditional art culture.
The regular flooding of the Yoshinogawa River resulted in highly fertile soil which led to the flourishing of indigo cultivation during the Edo Era (1603-1867). Indigo dye was exported from Tokushima to the rest of Japan which greatly enriched the lives of local merchants as well as indigo farmers operating along the banks of the Yoshinogawa River. This tradition of indigo dye continues to this day as visitors to the region can experience indigo dyeing firsthand to create their own uniquely dyed souvenirs.
This course combines aspects of traditional culture and art to take visitors on a tour that explores the transformation of traditional art into contemporary artistic expression to show visitors from across the globe the Japan of the past as well as the Japan of today. In addition, this tour uses bicycles for parts of the itinerary to allow visitors to experience Japan in an eco-conscious way.

・ Cycling through the countryside of Shōdoshima and Tokushima
・ Experiencing traditional soy-sauce brewing and pottery making techniques
・ The contemporary art of Shōdoshima and Teshima
・ Experiencing the traditions and culture of Edo Era Japan up to the present day

●Main Activity
Cycling, Cultural Experiences

●Months of Operation
April to November



Meet a Kōbe Port. Board jumbo ferry to Shōdoshima

Arrive at Shōdoshima (Sakate Port), bicycle orientation

<10:00 -12:30>
Cycling Route, Sakate Port ~Hishio-no-Sato~Jōkōji Temple~Olive Regent~Nakabu-An~Yamaroku Soy-Sauce Brewery~Coastal Cycling Restaurant Koyomi

Lunch at Restaurant Koyomi

Restaurant Koyomi~Olive Park~Hachiman Shrine~Gorges Gallery ~ Shōdoshima Sake Brewery ~Tonosho Port

Ferry to Takamatsu, trasnport to accommodation in Takamatsu, free time
Dinner will be arranged in the vicinity of Kitahama Alley and other places.

overnight in Takamatsu.

JR Clement Takamatsu or similar


Highspeed boat from Takamatsu Ferry to Teshima

Arrival at port, cycling course across Teshima's art exhibits with guide

Teshima Art Museum

◆Les Archives du Cœur ◆Yokoo House ◆Karato Shimizu ◆Place for Sea Dreamers

Box lunch from local restaurant

Return to Takamatsu via highspeed boat
Dinner will be arranged at the Nagara restaurant.

overnight in Takamatsu

JR Clement Takamatsu or similar.


Breakast and hotel check-out

Transportation from Takamatsu to Naruto

Ōtani-yaki pottery workshop → Ōtani-yaki pottery painting experience

Lunch in Tokushima City

Transfer to Ai-no-Kan Indigo Dye Workshop and indigo dyeing experience

Transfer to Tokushima City, tour ends in Tokushima City


<Necessary Equipment and Items>
・Clothing suitable for cycling and a change of clothes
・Suitable shoes for cycling
・Water bottle
・Sunscreen and sunglasses

<Course Features>
■Unique Experiences
・ Traditional style soy-sauce brewery and Ōtani-yaki pottery experience
・ The contemporary art of Shōdoshima and Teshima
・ Unique artistic and crafting experiences; Aizome Indigo Dyeing and Ōtani-yaki pottery

■Environmental Reminders
・Visitors are encouraged to use personal water bottles over PET bottles
・Visitors are asked to be considerate of environmental concerns and to actively participate in environmentally sound practices while on tour

■Contribution to Region
・All meals make use of locally produced, seasonal ingredients
・All lodgings, services, etc. are provided through local businesses


■Please Contact
Anabuki Travel