Odawara Castle

Medieval fortress close to Tokyo

Odawara Castle is a historic fortress located in the city of Odawara, just a short distance from Tokyo. Originally built in the fifteenth century, it served as the home base for the Hojo clan, who ruled over Odawara for over 100 years. Today, the castle is a popular tourist attraction, known for its well-preserved architecture, beautiful gardens, and fascinating history.

The castle keep, which is the main tower of the fortress, was rebuilt in 1960 based on diagrams and models from the Edo period. It stands three tiers high and has five stories, offering visitors a glimpse into japan‘s feudal past. The castle keep is open to the public and houses a museum showcasing artifacts and exhibits related to the castle’s history.

One of the highlights of Odawara Castle is its park, known as Odawara Castle Park. The park is famous for its stunning flora, including plum trees, cherry trees, and azaleas, which bloom throughout the year. Visitors can stroll through the gardens and enjoy the vibrant colors and fragrant scents of the flowers. The park also features a small amusement park with a mini train and a zoo, making it a great destination for families.

To fully immerse yourself in the castle’s history, be sure to try on some cosplay costumes during your visit. You can rent samurai clothes or kimono from the Honmaru Hiroba of the castle and wander the grounds, feeling like a true feudal lord or lady. This unique experience allows you to step back in time and imagine what life was like during the castle’s heyday.

Getting to Odawara Castle is easy, as it is just a 10-minute walk from Odawara Station. The station is accessible from Tokyo via the JR Tokaido Line, with trains departing from Tokyo Station. The journey takes approximately 90 minutes by regular trains and only half an hour by bullet trains. This makes Odawara Castle a convenient day trip from Tokyo, allowing visitors to experience Japan’s feudal history without having to travel too far.

In addition to its historical significance, Odawara Castle is also a popular spot for events and festivals. One such event is the Odawara Hojo Godai Festival, which takes place annually and celebrates the castle’s history and the Hojo clan’s legacy. During the festival, the castle grounds come alive with traditional performances, music, and food stalls, creating a lively and festive atmosphere.

Overall, Odawara Castle is a must-visit destination for history buffs, architecture enthusiasts, and nature lovers alike. Its well-preserved castle keep, beautiful gardens, and convenient location make it an ideal place to learn about Japan’s feudal past while enjoying the beauty of its natural surroundings. Whether you are interested in history, culture, or simply want to explore a different side of Japan, Odawara Castle is sure to leave a lasting impression.

Address And Maps Location:

6 Jonai, Odawara-shi, Kanagawa-ken

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