March 30, 2019
The 10 Best Must-Buy Souvenirs in Saga, Japan
The Saga prefecture is located between the Fukuoka prefecture in the east and the Nagasaki prefecture in the west. Although it is not very outstanding, actually, because it has the high quality hot-springs, mountains and the sea, it is a nice place to visit! I’m introducing the 10 recommended souvenirs which will you surely want to buy when you travel in the Saga prefecture! Please refer to this article, when you visit the Saga prefecture for sightseeing.
1. This is the standard souvenir in the Saga prefecture! [Ika-shumai]
The Saga prefecture is famous for the squid from Yobuko. I’m sure people who visit the Saga prefecture want to taste the Ikizukuri (sashimi arranged in the original shape of the fish) of the transparent squid. Of course, you can’t take back home the raw Ikizukuri, but the [Ika-shumai] (steamed squid dumpling) is suitable for a souvenir.
As it is made, using only the upper part of a squid, it has the fluffy texture. The flavour of the squid and its springy palatable texture which spread out in your mouth will make you feel very happy. The [Ika-shumai] has been sold at various shops, but the best one is the one from the original shop, [Yobuko Manbou]. You can enjoy the taste from a restaurant in your own home! This is the classic souvenir from the Saga prefecture!
Name: Kaichu-uo-dokoro Manbou Yobuko Honten
Address: Tononoura Yobukocho Karatsu-city Saga prefecture
Time: (Wednesdays) 11:00 ~ 18:00(Saturdays, Sundays and national holidays) 10:30 ~ 20:00
Map: map to Kaichu-uo-dokoro Manbou Yobuko Honten
2. The pretty souvenir with the copy of the shuro (kind of mushroom) in the Saga prefecture [Shuro-manju]
The delicious sweet of which the Karatsu-city in the Saga prefecture which is so proud to all Japan is the [Shuro-manju]! It is a bite-size sweet which looks like a shuro grown at the root of the pine trees in the Niji-no-matsubara which line up along the coast of Karatsu. Plenty of the refined sweet strained red-bean paste is wrapped inside the thin sponge dough! When you take one bite, you can’t stop taking another one!
I recommend the [Ohara-shinise Karatsu Honten], if you want to buy this sweet! You can eat it on the spot as well. The still warm [Shoro-manju] is especially tasty. Please sample it.
Name: Oohara-shinise Karatsu Honten
Address: 1513-17 Honmachi Karatsu-city Saga prefecture
Time: 8:30 ~ 19:00
Map: map to Oohara-shinise Karatsu Honten
3. You can’t miss this one as a Karatsu souvenir! The traditional pottery since a long time ago [Karatsu-yaki]
The Saga prefecture has been flourished by earthenware. Especially, the Imari-yaki, Arita-yaki and Karatsu-yaki are all well-known earthenware. The Karatsu-yaki doesn’t use a lot of colours and keeps the original taste of soil. It’s cool, anyway! Its particular taste has been well recognized among the connoisseurs.
The prices of the Karatsu pottery run the gamut. If you are looking for one for daily use, I recommend the [Homura]. This shop, [Homura] has been dealing with a lot of works from various potters and they have plenty of reasonably priced tea-cups, coffee-cups and rice-bowls etc. If you tell the shop-owner about what you would like to buy, he will show you his recommended one. The location is very convenient for the Karatsu sightseeing in the Saga prefecture. That’s the other attraction. Please drop in at this shop!
Name: Karatsu-yaki Homura
Address: 1689 Konyamachi Karatsu-city Saga prefecture
Time: 9:00 ~ 20:00
Close: open throughout the year
Map: map to Karatsu-yaki Homura
4. The souvenir using plenty of Amanatsu (sweet summer orange) which are grown in the Saga prefecture [Amanatsu Jelly]
Yobuko in the Saga prefecture is famous as a town of squid, but this [Amanatsu Jelly] is a concealing famous product! The skin of the summer orange is used as a container for the jelly. In the skin container, the sweet-sour jelly is fully crammed. You can’t experience this with other jellies. When you put the springy jelly in your mouth, the refreshing flavour will spread out.
Actually, one mother on the small Kabeshima Island has invented this [Amanatsu jelly] in order to revitalize the Island. Because of that, it has a home-made sweet taste and it is a safe food for children.Please buy some, when you visit the Saga prefecture.
Name: Amanatsu Kaachan
Address: 3748 Kabeshima Ohaza Yobukocho Karatsu-city Saga prefecture
Map: map to Amanatsu Kaachan
5. The Saga citizens recommend the sweet which has been popular since a long time ago. [Ikkoukou]
This is the sweet which I’d like you to buy on your holiday in the Saga prefecture. This [Ikkoukou] is a unique sweet which you can only find in Saga. It looks like a dorayaki (a bean-jam pancake), but it is harder than dorayaki when you touch it and when you eat it, inside is a cavity.
The crisp texture and mild sweetness of the black sugar syrup which spreads out in the mouth is its characteristic! It is surely an addictive taste. For the Saga locals, it has been a familiar taste since their childhood. When you visit Saga, you should taste it just once.
Name: Kusudaseika Honpo
Address: 3363 Kumaotsu Shiotacho Ureshino-city Saga prefecture
Time: 7:00 ~ 19:00
Map: map to Kusudaseika Honpo
6. The historical item since the Edo-era for a souvenir! [Ogi-yohkan]
The Ogi-city in the Saga prefecture is the town of yohkan (a bar of sweet jellied azuki-bean paste) where more than 20 yohkan shops are lined up. In the Edo-era, on the Nagasaki-street which went through Ogi, the distribution of sugar was flourishing, so in this place, they used the precious sugar at that time to make a sweet. Each one of the buildings of the yohkan shops is charming and you may feel you are slipping back a long time ago.
The [Ogi-yohkan] has a crispy outside and moist outside which is a rare texture for a yohkan. It has been made by the traditional method since the Edo-era. A lot of red-bean paste is stuffed inside. It lasts for a long time, so it is suitable for a souvenir. Please buy some of them!
Name: Muraoka Sohonpo
Address: 861-Ogimachi Ogi-city Saga prefecture
Time: 8:00 ~ 20:00
Map: map to Muraoka Sohonpo
7. Only the prefecture of pottery, the Saga prefecture can provide [Arita-yaki Accessories]
The Saga prefecture is well known for its various potteries. Among them, the Arita-yaki has the pretty colour tone and is fashionable for the small goods! The accessories made, using the Arita-yaki is recommended for people who feel that the earthenware is too exaggerated as a souvenir. The hair-accessories and brooches which have Arita-yaki as their main point make you feel very happy, even if you are just looking at them.
If you want to buy these Arita-yaki accessories, the [Ninomiyakanzan Koubou] is recommended. They are selling the straps for mobile-phones, too. I’m sure you can find your favourite ones for yourself as well as for distribution to your acquaintances. Choosing them is also fun!
Name: Ninomiyakanzan Koubou
Address: 1-9-3 Kamikohira Aritacho Nishi-matsuura-county Saga prefecture
Time: 10:00 ~ 18:00
Map: map to Ninomiyakanzan Koubou
8. The delicately made sweet in the Saga prefecture which is perfect for a souvenir! [Saganishiki]
The [Saganishiki] has the pattern of the traditional Saga textile, Saganishiki which had been handed down to the Nabeshima feudal domain. Bake the soft dough mixed with the red-beans and chestnuts to be fluffy and sandwich it with the Saganishiki patterned baumkuchen. The flavour is soft and sweet. It goes well with Japanese green-tea as well as coffee! It is the sweet which plays a role in any scene.
It was awarded a gold-prize by the Monde Selection in successive years and has a high popularity as the Kyushu fine sweet. When you visit the Saga prefecture, please buy this Saganishiki as a souvenir.
Name: Muraokaya Honten
Address: 3-18 Ekiminamihonmachi Saga-city
Time: 9:00 ~ 19:00
Map: map to Muraokaya Honten
9. The fluffy gourmet tofu which only the hot-spring in the Saga prefecture can offer for a souvenir [Onsen-yu-tofu]
The famous Saga gourmet nationwide is the [Onsen-yu-tofu]. It is a unique yu-tofu, using the hot-water from the hot-spring. In the Ureshino hot-spring area in the Saga prefecture which is one of the hot-springs for beautiful skin, every inn serves the famous product, [Onsen-yu-tofu] for breakfast. The tofu melts softly because of the hot-spring agents and you can enjoy the indescribable texture.
The [Onsen-yu-tofu] set of the Ureshino hot-spring which you can easily enjoy the [Onsen-yu-tofu] at your own home is super popular as a souvenir. The set contains the hot-spring water, tofu with the elaborate ingredients and special dipping sauce. It is easy to reconstruct the authentic taste! Please buy this set as a souvenir!
Name: Soan Yococho
Address: 2190 Shimojukuotsu Ureshinomachi Ureshino-city Saga prefecture
Map: map to Soan Yococho
10. People of all ages love! [Maru Bolo]
In the Saga prefecture, the sweet which has been loved by people of all ages is [Maru Bolo]. It is said that the sweet which had been brought by the Portuguese sailors as their preserved food a long, long time ago has been transmitted to this place. The original Portuguese one was harder but the Saga [Maru Bolo] was improved to be a much softer one.
This soft [Maru Bolo] is made using only flour, sugar and egg, so you can eat it with a safe feeling. Dipping it in the hot-milk is recommended! It is especially recommended as a snack for children.
Name: Kitajima Shirayama Honten
Address: 2-2-5 Shirayama Saga-sity Saga prefecture
Time: 9:00 ~ 21:00
Map: map to Kitajima Shirayama Honten
Let’s buy the souvenirs in the Saga prefecture which will please everyone!
Have you enjoyed this article? There are many traditional great goods and the little well known excellent products which haven’t been available nationwide yet in the Saga prefecture. There are a lot of things which you can’t buy in any other place! People who haven’t have any intention to visit the Saga prefecture might have begun to be interested in the Saga prefecture after reading this article, I wonder.When you visit the Saga prefecture, please choose a souvenir which will please the person to whom you are giving it.