Most viewed - HYOGO 兵庫県
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Himeji Castle tower, a National Treasure. 大天守547 views
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Road to Himeji Castle. From Himeji Station, the main road leads to the castle which can be seen in the distance.421 views
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Warrior armor displayed on second floor of Himeji Castle tower414 views
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Since Jan. 2010 is the 15th anniversary of the Kobe earthquake that struck on Jan. 17, 1995, I decided to upload these photos for the first time. I visited Kobe 10 days after the killer quake struck. Had to take a hydrofoil from Osaka to reach Kobe.383 views
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I was amazed to see Mos Burger back in business so soon. It was another sign of a very progressive recovery.350 views
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Nu-no-mon Gate (Important Cultural Property). This is the way out.347 views
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Okiku's Well. Subject of a famous ghost story called "Banshu Sara Yashiki," about a castle servant named Okiku.327 views
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Fukae Shopping Center300 views
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Kitanozaka slope goes to the Kitano-cho area of Western homes built in the late 19th and early 20th centuries. Many are very well-preserved and open to the public. This one has Starbucks. 北野坂(奥に北野物語館)298 views
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Harakiki Maru. Square where the samurai committed harakiri or seppuku. The well seen in the upper right may have been where the head was washed. The building on the right was actually a defensive post.296 views
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Twin turrets of Akashi Castle286 views
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Earthquake tourists getting their picture taken.269 views
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Santica building near Sannomiya Station had a middle floor crushed. As I walked around the devastation, I could see common ways in which the buildings collapsed. High rise buildings commonly collapsed on a middle floor.258 views
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Model of castle250 views
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Osakabe Shrine on top floor of Himeji Castle. This shrine was already on the hill before the castle was built. The shrine was moved when the castle was built, but it was brought into the castle after some "curses" occurred.235 views
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Barrels of sake displayed for Toka Ebisu inside Hanshin Nishinomiya Station.235 views
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Otemon Gate, Main gate to castle. Reconstructed in 1937. 大手門226 views
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Hishi Gate, Important Cultural Property. Pass though this large gate to proceed to the Ni no Maru compound. 菱門204 views1 comments
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Castle tower, a National Treasure. 大天守199 views
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The family crest of the resident warlords who repaired the castle are displayed. The warlords include Hashiba (later Toyotomi) Hideyoshi, Ikeda Terumasa, Honda Tadamasa, Matsudaira Tadaaki, Matsudaira Naomoto, Sakakibara Tadatsugu, and Sakai Tadazumi.197 views
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Castle view from San no Maru.193 views
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Path to Harakiri (belly-slitting) Maru on the left or to Ri-no-mon Gate straight ahead.192 views
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Wooden framework of castle tower191 views
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Family crest on roof tiles. The family crest of the resident warlords who repaired the castle remain on the roof.190 views
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Uchibori Inner Moat185 views
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Castle tower closeup. 大天守184 views
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Himeji Station179 views
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Kobe manhole179 views
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Road to Himeji Castle. Otemae Boulevard (Symbol Road). 大手前通り175 views
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World Heritage Site marker. 世界遺産 姫路城173 views
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Path to Hishi Gate. 菱門168 views
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Take off your shoes before entering.168 views
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Main castle tower (donjon), called Tenshu. 大天守160 views
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Castle moat159 views
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World Heritage Site marker. 世界遺産 姫路城157 views
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The family crest of the resident warlords who repaired the castle remain on the roof.154 views
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Weathercock House, built in 1909, is one of the main Western homes open to the public in Kobe's Kitano-cho. 旧トーマス住宅154 views
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Mizu-no-ni Gate, Important Cultural Property153 views
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Akashi Castle seen from the train platform of Akashi Station.152 views
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Path to Otemon Gate, the main gate to the castle. 大手門150 views
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Weapon racks called bugukake. 武具掛150 views
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Path to Ha-no-mon Gate はの門148 views
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Weapon racks called bugukake. 武具掛147 views
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Inside Ni-no-mon Gate. A bottleneck gate designed so not many enemy soldiers can pass through at one time.146 views
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Sangoku Moat in Ni no Maru, 三国堀145 views
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First floor145 views
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Sword exhibit145 views
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Ho-no-mon Gate (lower left)145 views
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Mizu-no-san Gate145 views
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Ni no Maru. After passing through Hishi Gate, this is what you see.144 views
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Castle tower viewed from Bizen Maru (Honmaru) 大天守144 views
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View of Honmaru (Bizen Maru) and shachihoko roof ornament. The shachihoko ornament on the roof ridge guards against fire and natural disasters. Eleven of these are atop the castle.144 views
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Ro-no-mon Gate (Important Cultural Asset) ろの門143 views
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Map of Akashi Park143 viewsThe castle is now only a small part of the park.
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Castle roof underside142 views
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Special Historical Place marker141 views
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Chi-no-mon Gate in the distance. On the left partially hidden is To-no-ichi Gate. ちの門141 views
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View from He-no-mon Gate141 views
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More exhibits141 views
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Ni-no-mon Gate (Important Cultural Asset) にの門140 views
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Koshi Kuruwa storehouse (Waist Quarter) for salt and rice.140 views
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Chi-no-mon Gate (after passing through)140 views
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Nishi no Maru and Sangoku Moat in foreground140 views
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Castle tower 大天守139 views
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Himeji Station139 views
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San no Maru. This area is ringed by cherry trees. 三の丸広場137 views
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Inside storehouse137 views
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Mizu-no-ichi Gate, Important Cultural Property.137 views
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Castle ticket office and entrance. Admission is 600 yen for adults. Hours are 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. (September through May) or 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.(June through August).136 views
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I-no-mon Gate (Important Cultural Asset) いの門136 views
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First flight of stairs136 views
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The Japanese tile roof makes the home top-heavy, making it more vulnerable to horizontal swaying and eventual toppling.136 views
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View of Honmaru (Bizen Maru), main road to Himeji Station, and Nishi-no-Maru135 views
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He-no-mon Gate への門133 views
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Nishi no Maru and Hishi Gate (lower right)133 views
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View from the right of Hishi Gate132 views
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Sign for bugukake weapon racks. Most explanatory signs are also in English.132 views
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San no Maru cherry trees. The stone marker says that Himeji Castle is one of Japan's 100 Best Cherry Blossom Sites.131 views
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View from the right of Hishi Gate131 views
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Well Turret sign. The turret is to defend the rear of the castle. It has three rooms, one of which has a 16-meter deep well. 井郭櫓130 views
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Top floor of castle tower130 views
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Inside Weathercock House.130 views
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"Sama" hole for dropping stones, throwing spears, etc.129 views
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Kobe City Hall buckled at the middle floor.129 views
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Path to Ni-no-mon Gate128 views
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Castle tower stone foundation128 views
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Mizu-no-go Gate. 水五門128 views
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Well Turret. The well is 16 meters deep with water 1 meter deep.127 views
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Mizu-no-roku Gate door127 views
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Moegi no Yakata or Sharp residence 萌黄の館(シャープ住宅)127 views
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Storehouse126 views
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To-no-ichi Gate との一問126 views
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Bizen Gate entrance to Honmaru, also called Bizen-maru. Notice the coffin stone on the right of the gate. (Important Cultural Property) 備前門126 views
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Stone coffins at Bizen Gate. Due to a shortage of stones during the castle's construction, many stone coffins unearthed from the tumulus on the hill of the castle were used in the rock walls. The stone coffins were replaced by real stones during the c126 viewsDue to a shortage of stones during the castle's construction, many stone coffins unearthed from the tumulus on the hill of the castle were used in the rock walls. The stone coffins were replaced by real stones during the castle restoration in the 1960s.
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Path to castle tower entrance126 views
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To top floor126 views
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Koshi no Kuruwa storehouse for rice and salt125 views
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Another major house is Uroko no Ie which has an art museum as well. 旧ハリヤー邸(うろこの家)125 views
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Nihon Seimei Bldg. collapsed at the middle, near Sannomiya Station. It's hard to imagine what would've happened if the quake struck during working hours with people working in this building.125 views1 comments
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Gun racks called bugukake. 武具掛124 views
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View of Honmaru and main road to Himeji Station, Otemae Boulevard (Symbol Road). 大手前通り124 views
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Fifth floor123 views
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Inside storehouse122 views
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Shopping arcade122 views
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Inside Mizu-no-roku Gate120 views
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British House 英国館120 views
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Toka Ebisu banner inside Umeda Station.120 views
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Mizu-no-go Gate door119 views
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Akashi Castle seen from the train platform of Akashi Station.119 views
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He-no-mon Gate in the distance. As seen from Chi-no-mon Gate.118 views
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View of castle tower from Chi-no-mon Gate118 views
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Akashi Station118 viewsOn the JR Sanyo Line.
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No, my camera lens is not distorting this picture. That building is actually tilting a lot, but they still allowed traffic on the road below.118 views
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Mizu-no-roku Gate117 views
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Tilted buildings near Sannomiya Station. It took only 15 sec. to wreak all this damage.117 views
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One end of To-no-ichi Gate116 views
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Castle tower viewed from Bizen Maru (Honmaru). 大天守116 views
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To second floor116 views
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Photo gallery115 views
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Hammack which Ben slept on.113 views
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The expressway that supposed withstand such quakes collapsed. It was a major scandal. The shinkansen bullet train tracks also had broken concrete columns which revealed pieces of scrap wood mixed in. 113 views
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Going back down111 views
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Video of Toka Ebisu at Nishinomiya Shrine, Hyogo.111 views
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View of Shirotopia Memorial Park. Site of the Shirotopia Expo held in 1989 to celebrate Himeji city's centennial. シロトピア記念公園108 views
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View of Honmaru107 views
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Inside Moegi no Yakata107 views
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Interesting contrast between buildings which fell and didn't fall.107 views
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Near Kobe City Hall along Flower Road was this office building which had also collapsed at a middle floor.105 views
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Kobe Shimbun newspaper offices near Sannomiya Station was in shambles.105 views
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Sogo Dept. Store cracked vertically in the middle. This building was later torn down and replaced with a new dept. store building.105 views
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Weapons racks called bugukake. 武具掛104 views
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Castle moat104 views
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Entrance to Akashi Park104 views
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Ben's House104 views
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Castle wall102 views
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The engineers said this would be strong enough, but they were dead wrong.102 views
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Going down101 views
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View looking east100 views
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Hitsujisaru Turret (坤櫓)99 views
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Garden of Musashi 武蔵の庭園99 viewsNear the park entrance is a Japanese garden designed by Miyamoto Musashi, famous warrior.
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Animal rights activists will love this house.98 views
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View from Hitsujisaru Turret97 views
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By this time, the tuna was dry and solid as a rock. It was impossible to stick on more coins.97 views
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Damage to Sannomiya Station building.94 views
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Castle moat93 views
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In front of Sannomiya Station is Sogo Dept. Store.93 views
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Toka Ebisu ad inside Hanshin Line train.93 views
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Inside Hitsujisaru Turret92 viewsRoof tile ends on display.
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Inside Hitsujisaru Turret90 views
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The main square in Kitano-cho. Most of the homes charge admission. It's cheaper to buy a set of tickets to see multiple homes. Most of the major homes have a ticket booth selling these ticket sets.90 views
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Crushed car90 views
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Coins stuck on giant tune at Nishinomiya Shrine Toka Ebisu.90 views
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Hanshin Nishinomiya Station.90 views
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Tatsumi Turret (巽櫓) (not open to visitors)89 views
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Statue of Nakabe Ikujiro (1866-1946) 中部幾次郎88 viewsA pioneer in building up Akashi's fisheries industry. Also a philanthropist who donated money to build schools in Akashi.
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Another common way in which buildings collapsed was the 1st floor giving way like this small hotel.88 views
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Tatsumi Turret (巽櫓)87 views
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Hitsujisaru Turret (坤櫓) is open to visitors.87 views
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They also had a giant maguro tuna fish on display as an offering to the shrine from a fishing cooperative.87 views
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Twin turrets of Akashi Castle86 viewsThe left turret is called the Hitsujisaru Turret (坤櫓) and the right one is called the Tatsumi Turret (巽櫓).
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Tatsumi Turret (巽櫓)86 views
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Steps to turrets85 views
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Expressway pylon broken.85 views
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The building next to Washington Hotel scraped against the hotel as it fell.85 views
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Where the tail is cut off.85 views
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Stairs inside Hitsujisaru Turret84 viewsUnfortunately, the upper floor is bnot open to visitors.
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Shop shutters along Ikuta Road are tilted due to the crushing weight.84 views
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Something unique is this upside down kadomatsu decoration flanking Nishinomiya Shrine's Haiden Hall.84 views
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Tatsumi Turret (巽櫓)83 views
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Shrine maidens selling fuku-sasa branches at Nishinomiya Shrine's Toka Ebisu.83 views
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Statue of Nakabe Ikujiro (1866-1946) 中部幾次郎82 viewsA pioneer in building up Akashi's fisheries industry. Also a philanthropist who donated money to build schools in Akashi.
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View from castle81 viewsThe train station can be seen in the distance.
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Castle wall and Hitsujisaru Turret (坤櫓)81 views
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Sannomiya Station81 views
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Inside Hitsujisaru Turret80 views
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Cracked Sogo Dept. Store in Sannomiya.79 views
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Sherlock Holmes room in British House, Kobe Ijinkan78 views
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Path to turrets77 views
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Distribution place for relief goods. Ten days after the earthquake, the initial fires, confusion, and pandemonium had subsided. It was pretty calm by then, but the damage was still visible.76 views
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Inside Hitsujisaru Turret75 views
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Kobe Port. Most of the people entering Kobe during this time were relatives and friends of Kobe residents, bringing relief goods.75 views
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Hankyu Railways' Sannomiya Station being torn down.75 views
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Fallen clock which stopped at the time of the earthquake.73 views
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Amid the rubble of a collapsed building, a yakisoba stall sold yakisoba noodles.73 views
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Crushed car73 views
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Crushed Audi.73 views
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Castle tower foundation72 views
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Hitsujisaru Turret (坤櫓) and castle tower foundation72 views
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So named because of a weathercock (rooster) on the spire.71 views
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Employees are removing merchandise from Sogo Dept. Store.68 views
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The 1st floor is totally flattened.68 views
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The next day, I again visited Kobe, this time by train to Ashiya Station. See gravestones overturned.68 views
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Nihon Seimei Bldg. collapsed at the middle.67 views
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Collapsed shopping center near Ashiya Station. That's the 2nd floor which now looks like the 1st floor.67 views
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Store in shambles.66 views
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People eating yakisoba amid the rubble.66 views
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One hotel guest escaped by using bed sheets as a rope.66 views
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Backstreet destruction.66 views
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Ashiya Station66 views
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Houses along the train tracks in Ashiya. Basically, Japanese-style homes with heavy tile roofs collapsed easily, while concrete homes withstood the quake better.66 views
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A mess inside a restaurant.64 views
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Selling omikuji fortunes.64 views
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A building owner stands by her destroyed building.63 views
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I really felt sorry for the people who had just bought a house or condo with a 35-year mortgage and the house or condo was destroyed by the quake. They are stuck paying off the housing loan and also have to pay monthly rent at a new place.63 views
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Vending machine62 views
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Water station62 views
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Bus for Ashiya Station, the furthest that trains could go at the time. Trains weren't running within Kobe.62 views
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This house stood firm, while its neighbor collapsed.62 views
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Rhine House (free admission) 旧ドレウェル邸(ラインの館)61 views
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The emergency stairway got torn off this building whose first floor got crushed.61 views
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Line for the bus headed for Ashiya Station.60 views
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When you look at these toppled homes, you cannot help but think that they do look flimsy with thin walls. The problem is, such cheaply-made homes are very common in Japan.60 views
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Jazz sculptures accent the Kitano-cho area.58 views
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Ashiya Station platform.58 views
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The famous scene of the expressway collapsed on its side was completely gone 10 days after the quake. They had cleared the collapsed section (about 600 meters) of the road.58 views
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Weathercock House, built in 1909, withstood the quake.57 views
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Sign saying they are okay.56 views
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The collapsed expressway was so embarrassing that they made it a priority to clear it ASAP.56 views
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Truck carrying relief goods.55 views
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Not a good idea to live in a house standing right next to another building.55 views
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Something they needed the most was torn off the building. If you live in a high-rise building in Japan, have ropes ready in your veranda in case your stairway is destroyed like this.55 views
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