Akita Rice Field Art Experience
Rice fields — nature’s canvas. Or at least they have been since 1993, when a village in Aomori decided to strategically plant different types of rice seedlings to create stunning artworks as the rice plants grew as a method to revitalize tourism in the region. It worked, and other Tohoku regions were quick to follow on the trend, including Akita.
Now in its sixth year, Akita’s special twist to the art is that the fields can all be viewed from a train. The art fields in Kita Akita and Senboku cities can be best seen riding on the Nairiku line going from Kakunodate to Takanosu, and the train has a special schedule with extra trips during the viewing period, which spans from July to September.
This year’s theme is “An Akita Dog and the Four Seasons”, where visitors can follow the prefecture’s fluffy symbol develop from a puppy in spring to an adult who has found love by winter. Those who wish the view the fields at their best are recommended to take a return trip, as one of the fields can be difficult to see if traveling one way from Takanosu to Kakunodate. Weekday and holiday free passes offer an affordable way of doing this.