Asakura’s own Archaelogical Park is perfect for history buffs, those wanting to know more about Japan’s Yayoi people and of course, people interested in the legend of Queen Himiko.
Hirazuka Kawazoe Archeological Park (平塚川添遺跡公園) is a lovely place for both adults and children. Uncovered in 1991, the park is a large-scale Yayoi settlement site. The ruins were designated as a national historic site in 1994 and in 2001 the park opened its doors to the public.
2000 years after the original village’s formation, it is humbling to see the reconstruction efforts pay such homage to the Yayoi people’s way of life.
The village was first formed around the beginning of AD and reached its peak in the late Yayoi period to the early Kofun period (2nd to 3rd century AD). Hundreds of people were living in the area at that point in history. We think that this village is related to the famous Yamatai Kingdom and the legendary Queen Himiko.
The park is located in a low lying area and stretches toward the Koishiwara River. It is surrounded by multiple water moats partially covered with water. As we know, most great civilisations began near a major water source, which is why many believe the kingdom of Yamatai originated at this spot.
The park is composed of two major spaces: the Experience Study Hall and the reconstructed village. In the Experience Study Hall, visitors can have a tactile experience handling ancient jewellery, pottery, hunting objects, and weapons. Authentic relics such as spears, arrows and fire makers are also on display and are particularly popular with children.
The park boasts both a large outdoor and indoor space where all these experiences can be had. A qualified staff members works on-site to explain the various uses of all the relics and will guide the tactile experiences. You don’t need to be a child to enjoy all those activities. All you need is a sense of curiosity and wonder to travel back in time to make pottery, create fire and handle ancient weaponry.
The restored village features a center a pit dwelling, a wooden girder bridge, a stilt warehouse, a “festival hall” and a meetinghouse (chief hall). The moat was has been refilled with water.
To fully experience the environment the Yayoi people lived in, the vegetation has been restored from the pollen, tree leaves, and acorns that were excavated from the site in 1991. Once there, you will get more than historic information, you will discover the lifestyle of the Yayoi, enter their houses, practice their daily routine and enjoy looking at the authentic wildflowers, insects, and birds from that time.
Hirazuka Kawazoe Archaeological Park is open from 9am -4:30pm.
During the summer months (June – August), the park operates from 9am – 6:30pm.
The park is closed on Mondays and days after national holidays.
From Fukuoka, take the take the train from Nishitetsu Fukuoka (西鉄福岡) station / Tenjin (天神) Station to Miyanojin (宮ノ陣) Station, then change to the local line heading to Amagi (甘木). Depart at Kamiura (上浦) station. Fro there, the park is just 12 minutes away on foot.
From Amagi Station, the park can reached by car or on foot (2.5km) taking approximately 30 minutes.