The Bizen (備前) region has been renowned for its ceramics since the Kamakura period (1185–1333). The pottery produced here tends to be earthy and subdued, and has been prized by dedicated tea-ceremony aficionados for centuries. Travellers with an interest in pottery will find the sleepy Bizen town of Imbe (伊部) and its kilns a worthwhile side trip from Okayama.
Most places of ceramic interest are within easy walking distance of Imbe Station. The Imbe information counter, inside the souvenir shop on the left as you exit the platform, has a very good Inbe Walk map in English, showing the locations of kilns, shops and other sites.