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The Highest Quality Shogi Boards

The highest quality shogiban ( and also goban ) are made of Kaya wood

( Torreya Nucifera or Japanese Nutmeg-yew ), that grews in the Miyazaki

area in southern Kyushu.

It is believed that the ” Hon-Kaya ” ( i.e. the Japanese Nutmeg-yew ) is

superior to the ” Chinese-Kaya ” a similar tree that grows in the Yunan

province in China and that the boards made of the Chinese wood are

only second best ( maybe the Chinese think differently, I don’t know ).

The ” Hon-Kaya “, because of the environment ( significant temperature

differences, lots of rain and sunlight, rocky mountainous area so each

annual ring is very close and dense, is believed to be the ideal and best


Even the snapping sounds of the pieces and stones are the most

satisfying on these kaya boards.

In order to make a board, a large chunk of between 200 and 800

years old Kaya wood is needed ( the cutting down of natural

Kaya trees is now strictly forbidden in Japan ), not surprisingly

This 18,7 kg Hon Kaya Shogiban with legs is for example priced at 380000 JPY

the prices are quite steep.

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