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Travel bucket list idea:

Last updated: 30 July, 2023
Expert travel writer: Rob Goss

First brought to Japan from China in the 5th century, shodo, ‘the way of writing’, is one of Japan’s oldest art forms. A spiritual or meditative practice as much as an aesthetic pursuit, it was commonly practiced by nobles and samurai, and today every school kid in the land will dip a bamboo brush into sumi ink to learn the basics.

From calligraphic scrolls in temples and on ryokan inn walls to the annual public calligraphy demonstration broadcast on TV when Japan announces its kanji (Japanese character) of the year, shodo is very much alive and kicking in modern Japan.

With workshops available in English, it’s something travellers can experience for themselves for an authentic experience of traditional Japan.

Price from: £32
Minimum age: Any
Age suitable: 13+
When: All year around
Duration: 1-2 hours

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