Rice, Rice Baby: Inakadate’s Tanbo Art the modern marvel Wallabies fans must add to RWC bucket list

Albeit a humble and unpretentious grain, rice is and always has been a cornerstone of Japanese life and culture from historical, religious and economical standpoints, and was incredibly once used as the nation’s primary currency. It also provides the foundation for one of Japan’s most-marvellous wonders that simply has to be seen to be believed, which can be found in the quiet, out-of-the-way village of Inakadate, which boasts a modest population of just 8,000. Rice cultivation has been the bedrock of life in Inakadate for more than 2,000 years but in the last three decades or so it’s become so much more, transforming the tiny village into a hub for tourists from all corners of the globe. Hundreds of thousands make the trek to Inakadate, in the Aomori region, every year to lay their eyes on some of the most sensational, breathtaking works known to man - the villagers’ Tanbo art. ‘Tanbo art’ translates directly to ‘rice paddy art’ although that is a somewhat
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