Hello! It’s Tomocchi ☆
I recently took a trip to Higashi Sonogi! (Formally: Higashi Sonogi-gun, Higashi Sonogi-cho)
It’s a quiet and relaxed tea town set right next to Omura Bay in the middle of Nagasaki prefecture.
I went to Higashi Sonogi, which has been quietly growing in popularity recently, to get some shots of its photogenic views and other spots.
… But first, lunch.
◆Soba Shop Tateishi
Address: Higashi Sonogi-cho, Oonegoto 1783-1
Open: 11:00am to 10:45pm
Parking available for 10 cars
Along Route 205, next to an old-fashioned building, extends the Japan Railway line along the curving edge of Omura Bay.
This Soba Shop has a location to pull in anyone, not just train fanatics.
Guests can enjoy their meals while watching trains through the windows as they move along the rim of Omura Bay ♪
I definitely recommend checking train times before coming (they pass about twice an hour).
Kitsune-don with mini-soba (650 yen with tax)
This dish was brought back because of popular demand.
Fried tofu and shiitake in a sweet dashi sauce, a taste that brings relief to the weary.
The dish is accented by the pink sakura denbu. At 650 yen for this plus a mini-soba, it’s an amazing deal!
Now that lunch has been taken care of, the next stop will be some fields that grow that delicious Higashi Sonogi tea…
…If it weren’t for local employee from the local town hall who was being my guide wanting to stop suddenly at this seemingly unremarkable hill.
“What is he doing?” I thought.
He took a yellow ball out of the car and set it on the ground on an upward sloping hill on the side of the road.
I was wondering what was going on when…
…huh? There’s something up with this hill!!!
No matter how you look at it, the hill seems to be sloping upward… but somehow the ball doesn’t roll down the hill but rather back up it!
This hill appears to be rising from right to left but it’s an optical illusion!!
“A hill that balls run upward” is so weird, right!?! You’ve gotta grab a ball and check this out! Go go!
Where is it? Umm, well, I can’t explain exactly where, but it’s in the middle of Nagasaki Prefecture. It’s on the way to a tea field with an excellent view of Omura Bay (^∨^*)
You can use this tea field as a landmark (lol)
It’s like one big green carpet!! This is the kind of beautiful view you can only get in Higashi Sonogi, the land of tea.
Higashi Sonogi-cho is where around 60% of all the tea in Nagasaki Prefecture is produced!
The blue of the ocean and sky make the green tea fields stand out even more. I love to see gentle waves roll through the tea fields as the wind blows over them ヽ(*´∇｀)ﾉ
The vibrant yellow-green leaves of the first tea of the season turn these fields even more lively!
The Omura Bay Green Road is nearby so I definitely recommend this area for taking drives, especially with a special someone ☆
These beautiful green tea fields seem to go on forever (´∀｀*)
◆“Akagi Cha Danchi,” the largest span of tea fields in Kyushu◆
Access available from Higashi Sonogi Interchange, about 10 minutes off the highway towards Omura Bay Green Road.
I’ve gotten a bit peckish so I think it’s time to stop off at the Roadside Station, “Sonogi no Shou”. They have delicious, self-service Sonogi-cha (Sonogi green tea) available for free ☆
With my tea I’m having an Oban-yaki which is a tea cake shaped like an oval coin from Japanese history. This particular one is called a “cha-cha-yaki” and it’s 80 yen.
This treat earned the top spot for take-out foods in the Kyushu Jalan tourism magazine. It was the most popular out of 144 Roadside Stations in Kyushu and Yamaguchi according to a ranking they made!!
The inside is chock-full of sweet white bean paste (shiro-an) with Sonogi-cha added in!!
These cha-cha-yaki with their tea flavoring are the perfect companion to a cup of warm Sonogi-cha.
Tea time with treats is so relaxing (´∀｀*)
Here is the Sonogi-cha corner, with a selection of goods only possible in the town where the product is made.
There are products from 12 different local tea makers on offer.
At the Sonogi no Shou Roadside Station they not only have Higashi Sonogi’s famous tea but also sweets and vegetables.
They also have a rest area and a little corner for a snack on your journey ☆
◆ Sonogi no Shou Roadside Station
Address: Higashi Sonogi-cho, Sonogi-shukugou 747-2 (Along Route 205) (東彼杵町彼杵宿郷747-2)
TEL: 0957-49-3311 Hours: 7:00a-6:00p Closed: January 1st to 3rd