Kawaga Prefecture - Sanuki City
A “Library Inn” to find peace of mind
In a small Setouchi port town
Umi No Toshokan (“Library of the Sea”) was an old-style Japanese house that has been renovated into a complex that serves as both a library and an inn. It is located in the small port town of Tsuda, Sanuki City, and it is situated just a 30-second walk from a one-kilometer sandy beach, which has been selected as one of Japan's “Top 100 Beaches.”
Umi no Toshokan houses two types of books: “The Sea Collection” and “The Drifting Collection (Books that have washed ashore).”
“The Sea Collection” consists of novels, picture books, and other literature that take place in the sea or in coastal areas.
“The Drifting Collection” consists of donated books from both within and outside the region, books that have drifted their way into Tsuda.
We are creating a system where books may drift in and out from all over the country by establishing collection boxes in restaurants, guesthouses, and other cooperating establishments in various locations.
In addition to Umi No Toshokan, we are currently working on creating collaborative locations in each prefecture with "The Drifting Collection" bookshelves. Our goal is to enable readers to return books they borrowed in Kagawa to a cafe in Tokyo or return books borrowed in Osaka to Hokkaido, allowing books to travel freely across different regions.
At Umi No Toshokan, we have set the lending period for books to be two years, allowing even our inn guests to borrow books with ease. (The typical lending period at regular libraries is two weeks.)
Pick up a book that piques your interest at the library,
Follow the road that opens into the sea,
Listen to the peaceful sound of waves,
And lose track of time as you read
What Umi No Toshokan aims to create for its visitors is “a day that is even just a little more peaceful and restful than usual.”
Originally, it was the residence and office of a deep-sea fishing ship captain. The ship’s name was “Yashima Maru,” and it was once renowned for having the highest catch of Pacific saury in Japan. From the house's central courtyard, to the winding corridors that wrap around it, to the glass used in the windows, you can see the intricate interior detailing that tells the history of a town that once prospered from deep-sea fishing.
Being an old traditional house, it may echo sounds easily, have chilly floors in the winter, or have sun burns/weathering on wooden areas. We understand that aspects like this may cause some inconvenience or discomfort, but we chose to preserve as much of the building as possible during renovation, as it serves as a historical artifact of the deep-sea fishing industry that once supported this town.
Umi No Toshokan is a being like the water’s edge for people who drift ashore to this town.
For those who wish to escape from daily life and leisurely read a book
For those who wish to explore the streets along the sea and enjoy the surrounding shops
For those who wish to experience life in Setouchi or life by the sea
For those who are considering moving or opening a new shop
And for those who have been tossed around by the rough waves of daily life, yet still fortuitously drifted ashore to this place:
Through your stay in this place and town, our aim is to provide you with a day that is just a little more peaceful and soothing than usual and to give you a boost for your journey to your next destination.
To all of you who are reading this, we eagerly await the day when you might drift ashore to visit us.