Against the backdrop of the northern Japan Alps and sprawling highlands, this castle stands magnificently as a symbol of Matsumoto city. Dating back to the late 16 century, this is Japan's oldest wooden castle and one of four castles listed National Treasures (the other three being Inuyama, Hikone and Himeji). Among 12 castle keeps existent in Japan, it is the only one built on plains, rather than on a hilltop.
The donjon, attached with three turrets, has walls mostly covered with black clapboards, earning it the moniker of "Crow Castle". Interesting features include openings to drop stones onto enemies, and a turret built for moon viewing. Cherry trees bloom gracefully in mid-April and peonies in early May. The huge moats are very beautiful with red bridges and koi carp.
Purposecherry blossom viewing,sightseeing
Airport/Sta.Toyama Airport (about 83.2km) Google Transit
We guide this spot.
5.0in the last week
The scenery here is truly breathtaking. Also breathtaking (in a more literal sense) are the crazy-steep stairs heading up to the top. I cannot imagine samurai going up and down those things in full armor. Gift shop had a guy dressed as a ninja outside for pictures. Just really cool all around!
5.0a month ago
One of the most beautifully preserved castles with a breathtaking alpine scenery.
You can visit the building from the inside but be aware of the following: shoes must be taken off and the wooden floor inside is really really cold! So be prepared if you visit it during Winter months. Also there are some extremely steep stairs inside, so only visit it if you have a good coordination and condition to climb these.
There are also local volunteers around if you need some help or guidance.
5.0a week ago
Easily accessible even on foot. Impressive size wooden building. History is radiating all over the place. It's a bit hard to climb inside the 5 floors on those very steep stairs.
5.02 weeks ago
Definitely worth a visit, don't forget to get a volunteer guide just before the entrance. They will guide you trough the castle for free and tell you everything you need to know 😉
5.02 weeks ago
This is one of the oldest remaining castles in Japan (possibly the oldest). My wife and I took some absolutely amazing photos there. In fact some of the photos looked even better than the actual sight. We paid the fee of ~¥610 each to go inside the castle which was really reasonable and well worth the spend. We would certainly recommend but it is free to view the castle, moat and bridge. This place has a rich history and is a must see especially when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom. Unfortunately we visited just before they got to full bloom. It was pure joy being there and taking in the sight.