tourism

Experience Weaving with the Artisan's Own Tools

Stroll Historical Fukuoka with a Hakata-ori Craftsperson (2hrs)

Walk around the Old Town while learning about Hakata-ori
Hakata-ori, silk textiles originating from Hakata
Jotenji Temple, the birthplace of Hakata-ori
Learn the history of the craft from a Hakata-ori craftsperson
Experience weaving with the same loom Hakata-ori craftspeople use

Hakata-ori is a silk textile tradition that has been passed down in Hakata for almost 800 years. The technology came from China around the year 1235 and was then developed in Hakata, the first Hakata-ori used as an offering to the shogunate in the Edo Period. In this program, you will explore the Old Town—which flourished as the heart of Hakata, Japan’s largest trading port, and contributed to the city’s development—with a Hakata-ori craftsperson, craftspeople, visit temples and museums, and learn the history of Hakata-ori. After, you will get to watch a craftsperson weave Hakata-ori and try weaving yourself using a large-scale loom the craftspeople themselves use.

  • Hakata-ori-themed walking tour of Hakata Old Town with a Hakata-ori craftsperson
  • Visit Jotenji Temple, the birthplace of Hakata-ori
  • See the Hakatamachiya Furusatokan, a relocated Hakata-ori weaving space from the Meiji Era
  • Experience weaving with a large-scale loom actually used by Hakata-ori craftspeople
  • Includes a small present of upcycled Hakata-ori created by a young craftsperson
  • Shop at Maison Hakoshima, a store filled with Fukuoka’s handicrafts
Keisuke ObataHakata-ori craftsman
Studied fashion at a junior college of art in the United States, and at Bunka Fashion College Tokyo. After working as a clothing designer, he studied Hakata-ori at the Hakata-ori Development College. In addition to his current work as a Hakata-ori craftsman, he is a Associate Professor at the Koran Women’s Junior College Comprehensive Studies for Fashion Department.
Destination Info

Jotenji Temple, the Birthplace of Hakata-ori

A 7-minute walk from Hakata Station, Jotenji is a Zen Buddhist temple opened by Enni Benin in the year 1242. In 1235, together with Yazaemon Mitsuta, a merchant from Hakata, Benen traveled to Song Dynasty China, and after bringing its weaving technology back to Japan, Hakata-ori was born. It is said that the tokko and flower tray patterns (two of Hakata-ori’s signature kenjogara patterns) can also be attributed to Benen. As you take your first step from the busy city onto the temple grounds, a quiet unfolds around you, and you can enjoy its Japanese garden and rock garden.

On the grounds of Jotenji Temple

Hakatamachiya Furusatokan, a Relocated Hakata-Ori Weaving Studio

Hakatamachiya Furusatokan is located next to Kushida Shrine, famous for the Hakata Gion Yamakasa festival. The museum introduces life in Hakata from the Meiji to Taisho Eras. The machiya townhouse building is a relocated reconstruction of the residence of a Hakata-ori manufacturer and weaving workshop built in the late 1880s, and it is one of Fukuoka’s Designated Cultural Properties. In the museum, there are exhibitions displaying Hakata-ori designs and tools, the process of creating fabric from threads, as well as Hakata-ori looms of various sizes.

Maison Hakoshima: A Hakata-ori Workshop in Gokusho-machi

Much like Kyoto and Nara, Hakata Old Town is home to many shrines and temples. The Old Town is an area that includes Jotenji Temple, the birthplace of Hakata-ori; Tochoji Temple, founded by Kobo Daishi; and Shofukuji Temple, Japan’s first Zen temple. Visit Maison Hakoshima, a Hakata-ori workshop in the heart of Gokusho-machi. Hakata-ori craftsmen use the loom inside the workshop daily to weave textiles. The annex shop contains Kyushu handicrafts curated by Mai Hayashi, a designer based in Fukuoka.

Program Contents

Walking Tour of Old Town and Weaving Workshop

Walk around Hakata Old Town with a Hakata-ori craftsperson. Visit Jotenji Temple, the birthplace of Hakata-ori, and the reconstructed Hakatamachiya Furusatokan. At the Maison Hakoshima workshop in the center of Gokusho-machi, watch a demonstration of Hakata-ori and try weaving with a large-scale loom that Hakata-ori craftspeople use regularly, not a small sample loom. You might be surprised by the distinct tapping rhythm of the loom, a noise more forceful than what you would expect from looking at the delicate patterns of Hakata-ori fabrics. *You will not be able to take the fabric you weave back home with you.

Hands-on experience with a Hakata-ori loom

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Tour code GFFK01
Dates Saturdays 13:30-
*The program is not held on dates marked with (-) on the application form.
Duration 2 hours
Schedule
13:25

Gather at Maison Hakoshima, reception.

13:30

Tour of Jotenji Temple

Head on a Hakata Old Town walking tour with a Hakata-ori craftsperson. Visit the birthplace of Hakata-ori Jotenji Temple and Hakatamachiya Furusatokan, a reconstruction of a Meiji-era Hakata-ori weaving studio.

15:00

Hakata-ori Demonstration and Workshop

After returning to Maison Hakoshima by foot, watch a Hakata-ori demonstration and experience weaving firsthand with the same loom that Hakata-ori craftspeople use. *You will not be able to take the fabric you weave back home with you.

15:30

Wrapping Up

Feel free to browse the annex store before concluding the program.

Languages JapaneseSupplementary explanations in English via translation device or lecture board can be provided upon request. Please make a note in the message box during registration to request this service.※An English interpreter can also be arranged for an additional fee. Please contact UNA Laboratories for more details.
Participants Minimum 2 / Maximum 6
Meeting Place
Maison Hakoshima
12 Gokusho-machi, Hakata-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka Prefecture
Train: 4 minutes by foot from Gion Station on the Kuko Line; 13 minutes by foot from Hakata Station (any line)
Bus: 5 minutes by foot from the Nishitetsu Bus Okunodo stop or Nishitetsu Bus Gionmachi stop
Car: Please park in a nearby parking lot (payment required)
Reservation Deadline 7 days before the start of the tour (for example, please apply by October 3rd for a tour that starts on October 10th)
Payment Method Advance payment at the time of reservation (VISA, Mastercard, Amex, JCB)
Attire No special requirements
Tour Conductor None
Note about Tour Conductors There will be no tour conductor from UNA Laboratories accompanying this program. Customers are responsible for managing their own itineraries.
Please Note
  • The tour will be held even in the event of rain, barring cases of inclement weather such as heavy rain or a typhoon.
  • All of the photographs displayed on this website are for illustrative purposes only.
  • Guests who are under elementary school age may attend the tour accompanied by a parent or guardian.
  • We advise taking out domestic travel insurance when participating in this tour.
Cancellation Policy 3 to 1 day(s) preceding the tour start date: 50% of the tour fee
Before departure on the tour start date: 100% of the tour fee
After the start of tour or no-show: 100% of the tour fee

UNA Laboratories COVID-19 Policy

UNA Laboratories is committed to ensuring the safety of our customers, staff, and community. In accordance with municipal, national, and industry guidelines for the prevention of infectious diseases, UNA Laboratories is implementing the following measures:

  1. 1. Guides will wear a face shield during tours.
  2. 2. Guests are requested to wear a mask.
  3. 3. Hand-sanitizing alcohol will be provided.
  4. 4. We will check your temperature and general physical condition at the start of the tour. UNA Laboratories reserves the right to refuse tour participation if a customer’s temperature is over 37 degrees Celsius.
  5. 5. We strive to maintain adequate social distance throughout the tour, so the maximum number of participants will be capped at six.

Travel Planning: Implementation

  • UNA Laboratories Inc. (Fukuoka Prefectural Governor Registration #2-951)
  • 3-12-22-302 Yakuin, Chuo-ku, Fukuoka-shi, Fukuoka Prefecture 810-0022
  • TEL: 092-982-7956E-MAIL: tour@unalabs.jp
  • Domestic Certified Travel Supervisors:
    Aya Tamura, Noriko Yahata, Rei Watanabe
  • Business Hours:
    9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Monday through Friday (Closed Saturdays, Sundays, and Holidays)
  • *Requests received outside of business hours will be processed the following business day.
  • *Domestic Certified Travel Supervisors are responsible for transactions held at the sales office that processes customers’ travel. Please do not hesitate to contact the aforementioned Domestic Certified Travel Supervisors with any questions or concerns regarding the travel contract.

Tour Information

Dates
Saturdays 13:30-
*The program is not held on dates marked with (-) on the application form.
※This program is scheduled to begin Spring 2021. If you would like to be notified when registration opens, please fill out the form below.
Duration
2 hours
Recommended Age
Suitable for All Ages
Price
5,800 yen
(tax and small Hakata-ori souvenir included)

※Guests under 12 can accompany a parent or guardian on the studio visit and walking tour (without weaving) for free.