Most viewed - Aizu-Wakamatsu 会津若松市
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Monument from Rome, Italy, given in 1928 by Mussolini. The column is from the ruins of a palace in Pompeii.244 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu (Tsuruga-jo) Castle, Fukushima Pref. The reconstructed castle tower (ferro-concrete) is based on the 5-story castle tower Kato Akinari built in 1639. "Wakamatsu" was named after a place in Hino, Shiga by Ujisato.234 views
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Stone marker for Tsurugajo Castle. Although the castle's official name is Wakamatsu Castle, it is popularly called Tsuruga-jo Castle within the city of Aizu-Wakamatsu. Outside Fukushima though, it is popularly called Aizu-Wakamatsu Castle.210 views
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Wakamatsu Castle, Fukushima. Totally modern on the inside (renovated in 2004), the castle tower is a history museum. It displays swords and portraits of the Byakkotai Battalion of teenagers who valiantly butneedlessly committed suicide on Iimoriyama Hill.182 views
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Byakkotai souvenirs178 views
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Monument from a German, Hasso von Etzdorf (1900 - 1989).161 views
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Entrance to Iimoriyama Hill, site of the Byakkotai "White Tiger" Battalion gravesite. In 1868, a unit of teenage warriors called Byakkotai (White Tiger Battalion) fought against the Emperor-backed Imperial forces encroaching their domain of Aizu160 views
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Family crests of all the warrior clans who occupied Wakamatsu Castle.158 views
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San-no-Maru entrance to Tsurugajo Castle 三の丸153 views
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Monument message in Italian. After WWII, the US Occupation authorities wanted this monument removed. But all they did was remove the engraved message (later restored).143 views
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Rokabashi Bridge 廊下橋140 views
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In 1591, Lord Gamo Ujisato (from Hino, Shiga) built a 7-story castle tower and renamed it Tsuruga-jo Castle. "Tsuru" means crane. A major earthquake in 1611 damaged the tower, so Lord Kato Akinari rebuilt the castle tower with 5 stories in 1639.127 views
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Tsuruga-jo Castle as seen from the rear.125 views
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Marker and side road to Lord Gamo (Gamoh) Ujisato's gravesite. Near Aizu-Wakamatsu City Hall. Gamo Ujisato (1556-1595) was a feudal lord from Hino, Shiga Pref. He built Tsurugajo Castle and named the town Wakamatsu, after a place in his hometown.124 views
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Graves of the 19 teenage Byakkotai warriors who killed themselves with their own swords.122 views
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About the monument from Rome.120 views
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Painting depicting Byakkotai suicide on Iimoriyama Hill120 views
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Sazaedo119 views
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Escalator to go up Iimoriyama Hill. Their tombstones are on this hill near where they killed themselves. Their story has become legend.118 views
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Byakkotai gravestones. Each one shows the name, age, and method of death called "jijin" (died with one's own sword 自刃).118 views
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Castle map. I recommend entering through the Kitaguchi entrance and exiting from the San-no-maru entrance or vice versa. Both entrances has a High-color bus stop nearby. The castle is too far to walk from Aizu-Wakamatsu Station, so take a bus.116 views
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Portrait of Lord Gamo Ujisato116 views
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Otemon Gate to Kitade-maru 大手門. The castle was first built by Ashina Naomori in 1384 when he built a structure called Higashi Kurokawa Yakata.112 views
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Byakkotai Gravesite. It is on a flat area which also has several other Byakkotai monuments including those from other countries.111 views
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Most next to Otemon Gate109 views
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Slope where they committed seppuku (hara-kiri). 自刃の地108 views
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Otemon Gate stonework. The castle was occupied by a number of clans. But it was Gamo Ujisato, originally from Hino, Shiga Prefecture, who made the castle great and established the castle town of Aizu-Wakamatsu.107 views
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Otemon Gate stonework with stairs, one unique feature of the castle. The castle was attacked by Imperial forces during the Boshin War in 1868. The castle was dismantled in 1874.106 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu manhole106 views
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Approach to the Byakkotai gravesite.106 views
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Wakamatsu Castle as seen from the rear.105 views
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Kotokuji temple105 views
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Foilage on the slopes of Honmaru104 views
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Byakkotai statue outside the Byakkotai Memorial Museum104 views
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Honmaru Uzumimon Gate and tenshukaku castle tower.103 views
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On the left of the gravestones, there is a monument for a poem composed by Lord Matsudaira Katamori, the last Aizu lord and whom the Byakkotai died for. 幾人の 涙は石にそそぐとも その名は世々に 朽じとぞ思う103 views幾人の 涙は石にそそぐとも その名は世々に 朽じとぞ思う
Ikutari no namida wa ishi ni sosogu tomo sono na wa yoyo ni kuji to zo omou
"No matter how many people pour their tears on these stones, these names will never fade from the world."
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In despair, the boys decided to kill themselves rather than die in the hands of the enemy. Photo: Escalator to go up Iimoriyama Hill.102 views
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The Byakkotai were outnumbered and forced to retreat. Twenty of them escaped to Iimoriyama Hill where they saw what looked liked a burning Tsurugajo Castle. Photo: Pay a small fee to take the escalator up the hill. Or climb up the steps for free.101 views
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Grave of Iinuma Sadakichi (Sadao) (1854-1931). His grave was built here in 1957 for the 90th anniversary of the Byakkotai's demise. 飯沼貞吉100 views
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Statue of a teenage samurai looking at Wakamatsu Castle.100 views
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Castle tower as seen from Honmaru Uzumimon Gate. In the lower right is the ticket office to enter the castle tower. Castle tower admission is 400 yen for adults. Or pay 500 yen to include the ticket to see the Rinkaku Tea House. Open 8:30 am to 5 pm.99 views
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Taikomon Gate where there was a multi-story turret which had a taiko drum used to signal the coming of a lord or for emergencies. 太鼓門98 views
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Inside Rinkaku Tea Ceremony House98 views
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Byakkotai statue at Aizu-Wakamatsu Station98 views
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On the right side are more gravestones. These are 31 Byakkotai members who died in battle. 戦死98 views
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Arrow points to Tsuruga-jo Castle.98 views
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Site where they committed seppuku (hara-kiri). 自刃の地97 views
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Another monument97 views
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Rinkaku Tea Ceremony House. Shoan, the son of tea master Sen Rikyu (who was ordered to committ seppuku by Hideyoshi), came here to practice tea in the late 16th century under the auspices of Lord Gamo Ujisato who himself was a tea expert. 茶室麟閣96 views
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This has become a national shrine, almost as important as Sengakuji where the 47 masterless samurai are buried.95 views
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Names of Byakkotai members, all 14 to 17 years old.95 views
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Sazaedo, a unique wooden, hexagonal structure which you will see when coming down from Iimoriyama.95 views
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Byakkotai Graves94 views
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Sazaedo94 views
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Byakkotai Graves93 views
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A short walk away is the grave of Iinuma Sadakichi, the only Byakkotai survivor who had slit himself, but was rescued by a villager passing by when everyone else had killed themselves.93 views
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Inside the Hashiri Nagaya corridor is a gift shop. This is connected directly to the castle tower and also connects to the reconstructed Hoshii Turret.. 走長屋90 views
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Sazaedo90 views
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Ujisato was married to Oda Nobunaga's second daughter Fuyuhime. He died at age 40. One theory says that he was poisoned by Toyotomi Hideyoshi. Entrance to Lord Gamo Ujisato's gravesite within Kotokuji temple in Aizu-Wakamatsu, Fukushima..89 views
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About Iinuma Sadakichi (later changed his first name to Sadao)89 views
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Byakko Kannon statue89 views
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These stairs on the castle's stone walls are called Musha-bashiri. They enabled the warriors to run up to the turrets quickly during attacks. It is one distinguishing feature of the castle. 武者走り88 views
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Monument for teenage samurai who died in battle.88 views
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Hand-painted candles87 views
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Entrance doors to Lord Gamo Ujisato's gravesite within Kotokuji temple which is a Zen temple of the Rinzai Sect.87 views
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Tombs of those Byakkotai who died in action.87 views
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Kitade-maru 北出丸86 views
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Rokabashi Bridge 廊下橋86 views
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Opened in 1956, the Byakkotai Memorial Museum has numerous artifacts related to the Byakkotai as well as the Shinsengumi. Photography inside is not allowed. Admission 400 yen.86 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu Station 会津若松駅85 views
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The 5th and top floor of castle tower has a nice lookout deck all.84 views
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Lord Gamo Ujisato's grave. This is a secondary grave, where his hair is buried. His main grave is at a temple in Kyoto where he died at age 40.84 views
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Monument on Kitade-maru 北出丸83 views
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Their names, age, and "senshi" 戦死 (died in battle) are engraved on the stones.82 views
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Statue faces Tsuruga-jo Castle which can be seen in the distance.82 views
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Uga Shrine 宇賀神社82 views
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Tsubakizaka Slope which is a bridge to the castle tower. 椿坂81 views
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Inside castle tower. This scene depicts a storage room for salt. Unfortunately, photography is not permitted inside the castle tower's museum area.80 views
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Grave of Iinuma Sadakichi, the only Byakkotai warrior who survived and told the story of this valiant teenage group.80 views
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Byakkotai enshrined in Uga Shrine80 views
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Tsubakizaka Slope which is lined with cherry trees. 椿坂79 views
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A warrior dummy shows how stones can be dropped through the stone hole on the floor.79 views
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Foilage and stone gate78 views
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Foilage on Kitade-maru 北出丸78 views
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Rokabashi Bridge 廊下橋78 views
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Grounds of Lord Gamo Ujisato's gravesite within Kotokuji temple. Since Ujisato was a Christian lord, it is ironic that he be buried in a Buddhist temple in Kyoto and Aizu-Wakamatsu.78 views
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Right beyond the Taikomon Gate is a tourist info office, cafe, restrooms, and benches.77 views
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Castle tower as seen from Honmaru Uzumimon Gate77 views
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Tombs of those Byakkotai who died in action.77 views
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On the west side is this Kurogane-mon Gate with steel doors. This is another way into the the main Honmaru grounds. During the Boshin War, the castle lord directed his troops from here. 鉄門76 views
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The gift shop also has a gallery of local crafts such as lacquerware.76 views
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Explanation of the kanji characters on the tombstone. From top to bottom, the characters are for "Sky, wind, fire, water, and earth."76 views
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Castle tower as seen from the west side full of cherry trees. Tsuruga-jo Castle Park is one of Japan's 100 Best Cherry Blossom Spots.75 views
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A recent addition is this statue of a teenage samurai looking at Wakamatsu Castle.75 views
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Wakamatsu Castle tower, called tenshukaku. In 1590, Gamo Ujisato became the castle lord and he built a 7-story castle tower completed in 1593. He renamed the castle Tsuruga-jo and renamed the town from Kurokawa to Wakamatsu.74 views
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Taikomon Gate stonework73 views
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The tombstone has five segments each with a kanji character. 五輪塔72 views
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A small room along the Minami Hashiri Nagaya Longhouse.71 views
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Inside the reconstructed Minami Hashiri Nagaya Longhouse. It is a long corridor with a few small storage rooms. 南走長屋70 views
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The castle tower was reconstructed as a ferroconcrete building in Sept. 1965 on its original site.69 views
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Tsurugajo Castle. The castle tower entrance can be seen.69 views
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Honmaru as seen from the top of the castle tower.69 views
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Stone-dropping hole.69 views
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Tsurugajo Inari Shrine69 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu Station 会津若松駅69 views
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Castle tower as seen from the west side in the Obikurawa 帯郭68 views
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Tsuruga-jo Castle tower. It is lit up at night.68 views
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A warrior dummy shows how a hole in the wall is used.68 views
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Castle tower as seen from the west side in the Obikurawa 帯郭67 views
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Honmaru Uzumimon Gate which leads to the castle tower. There was a turret here on the stone foundation. 本丸埋門67 views
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Inside the Kurogane-mon Gate is a mini theater.67 views
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An open window along the Minami Hashiri Nagaya Longhouse.67 views
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Rinkaku Tea Ceremony House. 茶室麟閣66 views
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Roof of nagaya longhouse.64 views
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Entrance to Rinkaku Tea Ceremony House 茶室麟閣64 views
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It took about 3 years to reconstruct this Hoshii-yagura turret using traditional construction methods. It was the castle's largest turret mainly used to store food.. 干飯櫓63 views
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Tourist info office below.63 views
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Looking east. These are cherry trees below.63 views
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This is over the Kurogane-mon Gate.63 views
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The nagaya longhouse corridor leading to the reconstructed Hoshii Yagura turret.62 views
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Sculpture near the Fukushima Prefectural Museum62 views
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Path to Lord Gamo Ujisato's gravesite62 views
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Kurogane-mon Gate on the left, connected to the castle tower on the right via the Hashiri-nagaya Longhouse which houses a gift shop 南走長屋.61 views
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Honmaru as seen from the top of the castle tower. 本丸61 views
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Lookout deck on castle tower. Great views all around.61 views
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Family crest on door. (Not the Gamo crest.)61 views
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Poem monument reads 限りあれば吹かねど花は散るものを心短き春の山風61 views
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Tsuruga-jo Castle tower60 views
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After entering the Kurogane-mon Gate, you can see the Hoshii-yagura turret 干飯櫓 on the left which is connected to the castle tower via the Minami Hashiri-nagaya Longhouse 南走長屋. Both were reconstructed in April 2001.60 views
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Numerous pine trees are planted within the castle grounds. At night, the castle is lit up.60 views
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Hi-color town bus, very convenient and cheap (500 yen for a day pass) to reach the city's major sights. It runs every 30 min. or so. ハイカラさん60 views
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Shopping street60 views
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Stone sink to wash the mouths of horses. A horse riding ground was nearby. 馬洗石59 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu Castle59 views
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Inside the reconstructed Minami Hashiri Nagaya Longhouse. Impressive reconstruction.59 views
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Upper floor of the Hoshii Yagura turret. It is used as an exhibition room. 干飯櫓59 views
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Entrance to pedestrian underpass in front of Aizu-Wakamatsu Station with Byakkotai (White tiger) painting59 views
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Fukushima Prefectural Museum59 views
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"Wakamatsu" means young pine.58 views
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Castle tower stonework58 views
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Alps58 views
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Stairs to go to the upper floor of the Hoshii Yagura turret.58 views
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Inside the reconstructed Hoshii Yagura Turret on the lower floor.58 views
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Hi-color town bus stop58 views
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Rokabashi Bridge connects the Honmaru to the Ni-no-Maru. Originally, this bridge could be cut down in the event of an attack. 廊下橋57 views
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Hashiri Nagaya Longhouse in the foreground, then the Kurogane-mon Gate, the reconstructed Minami Hashiri Nagaya Longhouse, and the reconstructed Hoshii Yagura turret at the far end. We can walk inside these structures as well.57 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu Station 会津若松駅57 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu Station57 views
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Lord Gamo Ujisato's grave.57 views
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Kojo no Tsukihi Poetry Monument dedicated to the poem "Kojo no Tsukihi" written by college student Tsuchii Bansui after he saw how the castle lay in ruins after the Boshin War. 荒城の月碑56 views
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Mt. Bandai is on the right.56 views
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Upper floor of the Hoshii Yagura turret. 干飯櫓56 views
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"Akabei" town bus which goes in the opposite direction of the Hi-color town bus. The same day pass can be used for both buses. あかべぇ56 views
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Kurogane-mon Gate on the left, Hashiri-nagaya Longhouse, and castle tower.55 views
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Stone foundation for Gosankai, a three-story building used as a secret meeting place. Before the castle was dismantled, this building was moved to Amida temple within the city.55 views
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Heads up view55 views
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Wakamatsu Castle has only these buildings standing. No other turrets, towers, or palace buildings remain.55 views
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Castle tower stonework with the characteristic stone steps.55 views
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The main Honmaru entrance55 views
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Looking toward Kitade-maru.55 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu City Hall 会津若松市役所55 views
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Tsukimi Yagura turret (Moonviewing Turret) 月見櫓54 views
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Top of Tsukimi Yagura turret (Moonviewing Turret). It was a two-story turret used to store weapons. It also offered a great view of the moon. 月見櫓54 views
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Honmaru 本丸54 views
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Aizu-Wakamatsu Station at twilight54 views
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Wakamatsu Castle and pine trees.53 views
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The castle tower was renovated on the inside in 2004.53 views
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Bus stop53 views
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Hashiri Nagaya Longhouse connects to the castle tower.52 views
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Stone foundation of castle tower52 views
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Ridge of castle moat on the south side.52 views
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Shadow of castle tower.52 views
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Entrance to pedestrian underpass in front of Aizu-Wakamatsu Station52 views
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Wakamatsu Castle as seen from Honmaru51 views
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Pine tree and Tsuruga-jo Castle. 鶴ヶ城51 views
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The castle tower (donjon) stands over 36 meters high. Its stone wall is 11 meters high.51 views
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Chatsubo Yagura turret (Tea Pot Turret). There was a two-story turret which stored tea ceremony implements and weapons. 茶壷櫓の跡51 views
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Entrance to Tsuruga-jo Castle tower (tenshukaku).51 views
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View from Chatsubo Yagura turret51 views
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Inside the Akabei town bus.51 views
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View of Wakamatsu Castle from Chatsubo Yagura turret48 views
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Castle most and Rokabashi Bridge 廊下橋47 views
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