The original Fushimi Castle was completed in 1594 but was destroyed two years later by an earthquake. It was quickly rebuilt, and then under the control of Torii Mototada, a vassal of Tokugawa Ieyasu, in 1600, the castle fell in a famous and significant siege by Ishida Mitsunari (the commander of the Western Army at the famous Battle of Sekigahara).
Nearly two million people live in Fukushima. The majority of the prefecture – the third largest after Hokkaido and Iwate – was untouched by radiation, while many areas that were impacted have reached levels below what is reported in many cities around the world. Visitors need not worry about eating the produce or drinking the water. The bigger concern is whether everything Fukushima has to offer can be packed into a single trip!
Layered between the civic surface of Tokyo’s landscape lie scores of dedicated shrines and graves dotting the city, each one offering a much more intimate view of the samurai. Home to vengeful spirits, ninja protectors and aristocratic war heroes, here are five resting places of Tokyo’s legendary warriors.
Shimane Prefecture sits on the southwestern portion of Japan's main island, and is the perfect spot to visit if you're looking for an off the beaten path travel experience. Often overlooked by visitors in favor of better known destinations, the region has culture, nature and history by the bucketload – just without the massive crowds to battle!
Manufacture of the katana using traditional methods, along the lines of those practiced by legendary swordsmiths such as Muramasa from the 15th century onwards, is a highly complicated and time consuming process.
There are plenty of restorations, but if you want to stand at the castle gate and see the same feudal keep that stood centuries before, you’ll have to make a special trip to one of the twelve. Matsue city, capital of Shimane prefecture, is home to one such castle, built in 1611 by Horio Yoshiharu.
Tons of Flashbacks were triggered haunting my memory in the search for remembering the origin of my familiarity with the word Namamugi. As the train slowly progressed to Tsurumi station, which was my final destination, I struggled hard to get rid of my superstitious misgivings starting with ‘what if in my previous life, Namamugi was…’.
Besides getting to know more about Japan through major cities like Tokyo or Osaka, Japanese culture also can be seen from historical prefectures, such as Ishikawa Prefecture, located in Japan's central Honshu. To visit Kanazawa, capital city of Ishikawa Prefecture, is to explore the well-preserved Edo Period districts, samurai culture as well as Japanese handicrafts products and beautiful nature.
Located in the north of Saitama Prefecture, Gyoda City is an ideal place to spend a day for history nerds, park enthusiasts, those wanting to learn about Japanese culture – in fact the list is endless, as it is a great day out for anyone!
Four hundred years later, the blood of samurai families serving Tokugawa Ieyasu still remains in four temples throughout Kyoto Prefecture: Yogen-in, Shoden-ji, Genko-an, and Hosen-in.
The small town of Chiran is located right at the bottom of Kyushu, in Kagoshima Prefecture. Despite the town's location, it remains a popular tourist destination for those looking for something a little different and off the beaten track.