Saga Prefecture

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Saga Prefecture (佐賀県) is a Japanese prefecture located on the northwestern most corner of Kyushu. Bordered by both the Sea of Japan and Ariake Sea, the prefecture is best known for its ceramic and porcelain production. The capital of Saga Prefecture is Saga City.



The history of Saga Prefecture can be dated to the finding of Nabatake ruins in Karatsu, dated to the mid 6th Century BC at the end of the Jomon Period. Villages are known to have flourished throughout the Yayoi period in the area as well.

Recorded history picks up in 665 with the Battle of Baekgang. Saga’s role as a primary line of defense against mongol attacks on Japan in the 13th century resulted in multiple castles being built there and the presence of a strong military leader throughout much of the region’s history.

The Han System, when it was abolished, resulted in the merging of the Saga, Hasuikie, Kashima, Karatsu, Ogi, and Tsushima Provinces into Imari Prefecture. Imari Prefecture was later renamed to Saga Prefecture in 1872. Additional alterations to the prefecture’s borders were made in 1876, 1883, and 1889 before today’s current borders were settled on.


As the smallest prefecture in Kyushu, Saga is located in the northwest corner, bordered by the Tsushima Strait and Genkai Sea to the north and Ariake Sea on the south. It’s close position to mainland Asia has made it important for both trade and cultural transmission and defense in Japanese history.


Cities located in Saga Prefecture include the following:

Districts and Towns

Additional districts and towns located in Saga Prefecture include the following:

Sources of Income

Industries that provide for the citizens of Saga Prefecture include multiple agricultural fields such as onions, beef, and strawberries, as well as mandarin oranges and mochigome. Additional industries include forestry products and fisheries.


Located in Saga Prefecture are multiple universities including Saga University, Nishikyushu University, Saga Women’s Junior College, Saga Junior College, and Kyushu Ryukoku Junior College.


Saga Prefecture is well known for its array of annual events including:

The Saga International Balloon Fiesta – Held every November on the Kase River attracting competitors from around the world.

  • Karatsu Kunchi – Held in early November every year in Karatsu City, attracting more than 500,000 people annually.
  • Kashima Gatalympics – Held every May, this event involves multiple sports played in the mud of the Ariake Sea.

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