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Road to Sunomata Ichiya Castle. "Ichiya" means "one night," referring to how long it took to build the castle according to legend. Phone: 0584-62-3322, Address: 岐阜県大垣市墨俣町墨俣1742-1
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Gate to Sunomatawhich was also a post town along the Mino Road. Sunomata is accessible by Gifu Bus (W65 on Obusa Sunomata Route) from JR Gifu Station and Ogaki Station. Get off at Sunomata bus stop.
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Another gate along the path to Sunomata Castle.
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Way to Sunomata Castle. This path goes along the Nagara River.
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Sunomata Castle was originally built in 1561 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi supposedly overnight as part of Oda Nobunaga's strategy to conquer Mino (Gifu) Province.
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Sunomata Ichiya Castle was reconstructed in April 1991.
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Main bridge to Sunomata Castle. Gourds are prominent here.
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Sunomata Castle
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Sunomata Castle and gourd sculpture. The gourd (hyotan) was Toyotomi Hideyoshi's trademark as well as a symbol of this area.
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Sunomata Castle.
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Bridge to Sunomata Castle.
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Sunomata Ichiya Castle is open 9 am to 5 pm, closed Mon. (open if a national holiday and closed on Tue. instead). Admission 200 yen for adult, free for children below age 18.
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Statue of Toyotomi Hideyoshi in front of Sunomata Castle.
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Statue of Toyotomi Hideyoshi in front of Sunomata Castle.
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Golden pair of shachi atop Sunomata Castle.
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Entrance to Sunomata Castle.
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Near the castle entrance is this stone gourd pouring water.
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Small sculptures on the castle foundation.
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Side view of Sunomata Castle.
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Rear view of Sunomata Castle.
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Another bridge to Sunomata Castle. More picturesque, but almost useless as it goes to a road with heavy traffic.
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Stone foundatio.
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Roof
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Sunomata Castle has five floors. The first floor has this room introducing the nature and history of Sunomata.
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This room was also where Crown Prince Hiro and Crown Princess Masako rested during a visit to the castle in April 1995.
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When I visited the castle in 1995, the room still had the chairs and table the Crown Prince and Princess used. They have since been removed from the room. This photo was taken in 1995.
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Model of Sunomata which was a post town on the Mino Road between Atsuta in Nagoya and Tarui in Gifu.
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The castle is small, but nice. The stairway here.
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The second floor shows how the castle was built.
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Video screening area.
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Rest area.
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The 3rd floor shows how Toyotomi Hideyoshi rose to power and prominence.
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Toyotomi Hideyoshi
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Swords
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Matchlock guns
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Print showing the construction of Sunomata Castle.
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The fourth floor is a gallery. Pictures by local kids.
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"Hideyoshi" in kanji spelled out with small gourds.
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The 5th floor is the lookout deck. No veranda, but the windows are open for easy viewing and picture-taking.
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View of Nagara River.
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View of Sunomata and the main bridge to the castle.
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View of Sunomata-juku post town.
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On a clear day, Mt. Ibuki can be seen.
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Nagara River and Gifu Castle on Mt. Kinka on the upper left.
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Gifu Castle atop Kinkazan as seen from Sunomata Castle. Then called Inabayama Castle, Gifu Castle was one objective for Sunomata Castle and Hideyoshi.
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View of Shirahige Shrine
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Sunomata Castle marker.
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Marker commemorating the Crown Prince and Princess' visit in April 1995.
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Shirahige Shrine is next to Sunomata Castle.
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Next to Shirahige Shrine is Hokoku Shrine dedicated to Hideyoshi.
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Hokoku Shrine is called the home of the "God of Success" in reference to Hideyoshi's spectacular rise to power from humble beginnings.
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About Hokoku Shrine.
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Next to the castle is also this rack of gourds.
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Graves of those who died building Sunomata Castle.
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