Come To Kagawa

Undiscovered Japan: A Spiritual Destination

Shopping in Takamatsu

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Today we took some time to go shopping downtown with the kids. Why don’t you come along with us today and see what we have seen? While there is much to do in the city in terms of bonsai nurseries, galleries, island visits, and visiting the cultural and historic sites that abound, sometimes it is just nice to walk around in the city, have lunch, enjoy some tea, and take a look around at the shops.

We start in the very centre of the city. Takamatsu has several interlocking streets that form a shopping arcade. On the weekends you can see a lot of people downtown going for lunch, visiting coffee shops, and doing their weekly shopping. It is a really nice atmosphere. Bicycles are not permitted, and neither are cars, so you can let your mind relax a little as you wander these streets.

A really nice thing about this part of the city is that you are completely out of the direct weather. It feels a bit shaded in the summer, and you are free from the wind and rain. Perfect.

Let’s get down to the street level and see what we see.

Here you can see neat little shop that sells sweets. There are a number of these little pastry shops all along the street. There are cafes galore as well, including a Starbucks, if you need your fix.

Moving further along we find more things to check out.

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A very nice TEA shop!
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My girls are being told, “DON’T TOUCH ANYTHING!”
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Some traditional shapes for tea pots.
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And very reasonably priced tea cups too.

Inside the tea shop are all the different kinds of tea, and more upscale items that would not be put out in the arcade area. The shop is really classic, and very much part of a Japan we could see in the past. Drop in, browse, and if you have kids, you can yell at them like we do at ours.

Let’s keep going!

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There are a number of these kinds of carts out in the shopping arcade.
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Handmade items, old antique cloth, and classic prints and photograph materials too. Always something new to find.

As we go along we come across this very cool shop.

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This shop called “Hiinaya” sells traditional dolls.
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They also have a selection of fabric art.
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Very cozy and nice. The owners are a very nice couple.
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These are the “hina-matsuri” dolls for Dolls Festival
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t The lady who runs the shop also teaches classes for how to make different things using kimono-type fabrics. Very nice!

We checked out the prices, and they are very reasonable. You can see some things here that you will not easily find elsewhere. A nice place to browse!

Let’s continue on our way…

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A very nice active street. To the left is an import shop for wine and snacks. Just in case you need a taste of home.
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A donut truck! Heaven on wheels.
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The streets are decked with holly this time of year.
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As you keep going south you will cross the street into more of the arcade. Let’s go.
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For places to stop for lunch, these are easy places to grab a bite. The menu will have lots of pictures too, so just point to what you need! No problem!

As we go along we come to a very interesting place with some very unique items particular to Kagawa. Let’s head on in and take a peek.

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This is a shop that sells local handicraft, and also local vegetables. Enjoy the vegetables here, pack the souvenirs in your suitcase.
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A very nice selection of lacquerware items, including cool lunch boxes.
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More local crafts to check out.
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This is cool. These are presses to make pressed sugar snacks used for tea ceremony. Lovely, unique, and in many original shapes.
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This is also quite interesting. These are “temari”.
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Tamari is a craft originating here in Kagawa. They are called “thread balls” and are decorative, or used for juggling. All shapes and colors!
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You can even get some kits to try it out for yourself.

To learn a little more about the folk-art of “temari” check out this website: http://www.temari.com .

The last part of our shopping trip brings us to the newly renovated HUGE department store called “FLAG”. Flag is easy to find. The local “Kotoden” train stops there. The station is called “Kawaramachi”. If you arrive by train just exit the main gate and walk straight across the station lobby to the department store. Easy as pie.

We like the 7th floor because there are books for kids, and also lots of stationary type things there. I bought sumo-themed and ninja-themed greeting cards for family back in Canada. Nothing says “Happy Holidays” like two large sumo guys fighting, or sneaky ninja types hell-bent on sinister acts of assassination.

Check out Flag!

Thanks so much for coming along on our shopping trip. In the end we bought books and stationary stuff for kids, had lunch, met some nice shop owners who said they would love to have you come and visit, drank some coffee, and just enjoyed the day walking on the very friendly streets of Takamatsu.

Would love to have you come and visit. Let us know if this helped you. We will keep updating as we go along. In the meantime, thanks again, have a great day, and we look forward to hearing from you.

Mark, Kazuyo, and kids.

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