Eleven days after the start of summer
The Nakayama Rice Fields are largest expanse of terraced paddies on Shodoshima Island. A sight to behold at any time of the year, they are particularly lovely just before harvest.
Eleven days after the start of summer there is a festival where fires are lit by torch to rid the fields of harmful insects. Non-residents of the community are welcomed, but you have to register from 5pm-6pm. The festival starts at 6:45pm and lasts about an hour.
This 300-year-old festival has an interesting backstory. After having been discontinued for several years, it was brought back by a sense of nostalgia felt in the community after the tradition was featured in a popular movie.
Access: Take the Olive Bus Company’s Nakayama line and get off at the Nakayama bus stop.
ABOUT THE ISLAND
The second largest island in the Seto Inland Sea, Shodoshima belongs to Kagawa Prefecture, but is easily accessible from ferries running from Okayama Prefecture as well.
Shodoshima boasts several nice beaches, hot spring resorts, and beautiful coastal scenery on the exterior of the island, with a mountainous interior. Some of the sights on the interior of the island include the famous Olive Park, Kankakei Gorge and ropeway, and a monkey park.
Gourmands will enjoy touring a soy sauce museum to learn about the 400-year-old tradition of making soy products on the island. Sesame seed oil and olive products are also well-known items from the region. Popular sightseeing destinations on the exterior of the island include a soy sauce factory, and Angel Road, a sandbar that visitors can walk along at low tide to reach a small island.
Shodoshima is part of the Setouchi International Art Triennale; as such, several permanent installations of contemporary art are on view to visitors. The artwork creates a wonderful contrast between the modern and the traditional as well as the natural and human-made.
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|Cancellation Date||Up to 21 days prior||20-8 days prior||7-2 days prior||Day prior to start of tour||Day of tour||After start of tour/non-participation with no contact|
|Cancellation Fee||No charge||20% of tour fee||30% of tour fee||40% of tour fee||50% of tour fee||100% of tour fee|