Hirashimizu Pottery District
Hirashimizu Pottery District information
The fiery kilns lining the Hazukashi-kawa (Embarrassed River) turn out beautiful bluish-grey mottled pieces known as nashi-seiji (pear skin). In the 19th century there were dozens of workshops here, but now only a few remain. Shichiemon-gama is the largest and offers the best chance to see master potters at work.
You can also try your hand at making your own pottery here. Lessons (in Japanese) are 90 minutes and priced according to the amount of clay you use (¥2000 per kilogram; shipping fee extra). No reservations are necessary and kids are welcome, too. Note that finished pieces ship to an address in Japan one month later. Pick up professional pieces in the studio's shop.
Buses bound for Nishi-Zaō or Geikō-dai run hourly or half-hourly from stop 5 outside Yamagata Station to the Hirashimizu stop (¥280, 15 minutes).