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Hiroshima Castle

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Hiroshima Report - April 12, 2017
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Hiroshima Castle (L, Hiroshimajō), also called the Carp Castle, is a good example of a castle built on a plain in the center of a city as opposed to hilltop and mountaintop castles. Its main keep is five stories tall, and its grounds are surrounded by a moat. Also within the castle's precincts are a shrine, some ruins and a few reconstructed buildings of the Ninomaru (second circle of defense).

Hiroshima developed as a castle town, whereby the castle was both the physical and economical center of the city. Built in 1589 by the powerful feudal lord Mori Terumoto, Hiroshima Castle was an important seat of power in Western Japan. While it was spared the demolishment that many other castles met during the Meiji Restoration, like the rest of the city, Hiroshima Castle was destroyed by the atomic bomb in 1945.

Ninomaru

Thirteen years later, its main keep was rebuilt in ferro-concrete with an attractive, partially wooden exterior. Inside the keep is an informative museum on Hiroshima's and the castle's history and Japanese castles in general, while panoramic views of the surrounding city can be enjoyed from the top floor.

In more recent restoration efforts, some structures of the Ninomaru, the castle's second circle of defense, were reconstructed using original building methods and materials. They include the castle's main gate and two turrets adjoined by a long storehouse. Visitors can enter the buildings and view exhibits about their reconstruction.

View of the city from the top of the main keep

Access

The castle is a ten minute walk from Kamiyacho-nishi or Kamiyacho-higashi tram stop (12 minutes, 160 yen from Hiroshima Station by lines 1, 2 or 6). It is also a ten minute walk from Shukkeien or a 15-minute walk from the Peace Park.

How to get to and around Hiroshima

Hours & Fees

Main Keep

Hours

9:00 to 18:00 (March to November)
9:00 to 17:00 (December to February)
9:00 to 19:00 (during Golden Week and Obon holidays)
Admission ends 30 minutes before closing time.

Closed

December 29 to 31

Admission

370 yen (main keep), admission to the rest of the castle grounds is free

Ninomaru

Hours

9:00 to 17:30 (April to September)
9:00 to 16:30 (October to March)
Admission ends 30 minutes before closing time.

Closed

December 29 to January 2

Admission

Free

Hotels around Hiroshima

Recommended Hotels
Hotel Granvia Hiroshima
Its location adjacent to JR Hiroshima Station makes it a very convenient base.
Book:
Agoda Booking
Kurayado Iroha Hotel
Modern ryokan along the waterfront of Miyajima, just a short walk from Itsukushima Shrine.
Book:
Agoda Booking
Sheraton Hiroshima Hotel
Spacious four star hotel conveniently located next to JR Hiroshima Station
Book:
Agoda Booking

Tours and Experiences

Page last updated: April 26, 2016