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A free museum about Chikugo River
Price: 0 yen
Next to Yumetown in Kurume, there's a small riverside museum, plus it's free. It's the sort of place I imagine lots of elementary school students visit for field trips. I'm not sure what Usu means in this case, but the literal meaning is mortar, as in the container used to pound rice into mochi. I guess the building is sort of that shape, a round dome where we can literally walk in a big circle inside to see all the exhibits. The usu is along the Chikugogawa and on the northwest side of Youme Town. Right behind the building, there's a walkway and a great view of the river. There's also a pedestrian bridge connecting Hyakunen Koen (100 years park) with the YoumeTown side of Koragawa, right before it flows into Chikugogawa.
(It's worth it to walk along Koragawa in this area/the park during spring because there are tons of cherry blossoms.)
It only takes an hour or so to look around as it isn't very big, but sometimes events are held there. There are exhibits of photography and maps showing historical flooding of the river. There are also lots of aquariums showing the fish and other creatures that live in the river.
The first time we went, it was in January, and we could take free omikuji (fortunes). The information provided (about the types of fish, etc.) is mostly for children, so it's easy for foreigners to read if we know hiragana and katakana. We can see unagi, crazy crocodile nosed fish, and even feed koi.
Access is possible by bus, but most people go by car or bicycle, and it's right next to Youme Town. The closest station is Miyanojin on Nishitetsu Omuta Line, two stations before Nishitetsu Kurume, but it's a 20 minute walk from there.
Open 9:30-17:00, closed Mondays. No entrance fee. There's a little sign in spot near the entrance to note how many people are visiting and if you're from Kurume, etc. It's all in Japanese, so if you can't figure it out, it's probably fine to skip.