I traveled to Kumamoto using “Kyushu Fukko Wari” (Kyushu Reconstruction Discount Tickets). Since I was impressed with Kumamon (the local mascot character of Kumamoto Prefecture) at Yuru-chara Grand Prix 2016, I decided to visit Kumamoto to see how reconstruction has been moving forward after the strong earthquake. In this article, I will write about Kumamoto Castle as part of Day 2.
[Visit Places (series of articles)]
* Day 1: Departure for Kumamoto
* Day 2: Kumamoto Castle [This article]
* Day 2: Josaien
* Day 2: Kumamon Square
* Day 2: Kumamoto Night View
* Day 3: Kumamoto Suizenji
* Day 3: Kumamoto Station
* Day 3: Kumamoto Castle (Revisit)
* Day 3: Kumamoto Castle (Evening View)
2016.12.22 – 24
The 2nd day of my Kumamoto trip has started.
Breakfast at Dormy Inn Kumamoto
To begin with, I had a breakfast. Dormy Inn Kumamoto, where I stayed for this trip, provided a variety of breakfast menu including local cuisine.
Dago-jiru is one of the famous local food in Kumamoto.
Today, I chose mainly Japanese food.
After breakfast, I visited Kumamoto Castle.
What is Kumamoto Castle?
Kumamoto Castle is one of the three most magnificent castles in Japan. It was constructed in 1607 by Kiyomasa Kato. As you may know, there was a strong earthquake in Kumamoto Prefecture in April 2016, which has affected Kumamoto Castle.
Current status (as of 2016.12)
Due to the earthquake, visitors are prohibited from entering into Kumamoto Castle, but they are allowed to watch the castle from Ninomaru Park and Kato Shrine, which are located around the castle.
So, I walked around Kumamoto Castle.
Walking around Kumamoto Castle
First, I found the statue of Kiyomasa Kato.
Unfortunately, it was cloudy.
Josaien is a popular tourist attraction. The facility has not started yet, so I will come back later.
This is “Hitsuji Saru Turret”.
You can see that stone wall behind the turret has been destroyed.
Visitors are able to see the main castle tower.
This is Inui Turret and you can see stone wall has been destroyed.
Now I arrived at Kato Shrine.
From Kato Shrine, visitors are able to see the main castle tower.
You can see how the earthquake hit the castle.
Higashi-Juhachiken Turret and Kita-Juhachiken Turret. They are completely destroyed.
I stopped by Kumamoto Castle Inari Shrine.
I found a big Kumamon’s wall painting.
Then, I returned to Josaien and looked around it. I will write about it in the next article.
That’s it for the article about Kumamoto Castle as part of Day 2. When I saw the damaged castle, I felt sorry for the earthquake. On the other hand, however, I saw how the reconstruction has been advanced. So, I believe it was a good chance to visit Kumamoto.
In the next article, I will write about Josaien.