Kakegawa: Hilltop Castle of Kakegawa (掛川城)
The Kakegawa Castle (掛川城, Kakegawa-jō) is a hilltop castle that can be found in Kakegawa City, at Shizouka Prefecture. Unlike most castles in Japan, the Kakegawa Castle is slightly smaller in size. But despite of its build, this castle can easily capture the eyes since it is atop the hill. Tourists love to stop by the castle, since it is also near the Kakegawa Station.
The castle, may be humble in size, is very rich in history. Its fortifications were reinforced in 1470. Several feudal lords and clans took control over the castle throughout the years. Even though the original structure was partially destroyed twice by earthquakes, reconstruction through same traditional methods and materials was made possible to return the castle back to its grandeur when it was originally built.
The main tower in the castle was transformed into a museum wherein artifacts such as wardrobe and weapons that were existent during the period the castle was build were displayed. On the topmost part of the castle is the observation deck where the whole city of Kakegawa can be seen in its splendor, along with other towns in Shizouka. Even Mt. Fuji can be spotted when the skies are clear. At the bottom of the castle, the Ninomaru tea room, garden and museum.
The palace may not be as majestic at first glance, but still it is worth visiting for its very scenic structure. It is said that the Kakegawa Castle is one of the best castles in Tokai region. Not only the castle itself is rich in history, but also the town that surrounds the palace has been existing for so many years. Walking through the castle town brings a whole new experience of Japan, the quiet and serene side of Japan. The Kakegawa Castle is worth visiting, especially during the bloom of Cherry blossoms, where the castle just glows even lovelier.
¥500 (Includes Kakegawa Museum pass)
From Kakegawa Station, the Kakegawa Castle is about one kilometer walk (15 minutes)
It’s easier to rent a bike (or borrow from a friend) when going to the castle. It’s much safer, faster, and you’d appreciate more the countryside feel of the place.