Hirosaki Castle [弘前城]
Hirosaki Castle in winter
Hirosaki Castle is in the center of Hirosaki city.
It is located about 2 km west of JR Hirosaki station.
The whole site is Hirosaki Park.
The castle was built by Tsugaru Tamenobu and his son Nobuhira in 1611.
They were the feudal lords in this area.
The Tsugaru clan was based at this castle, and had governed this area until 1871.
After Meiji modern government started, this castle was abondoned in 1873.
Then it was opened to the public as a park in 1895.
The site is about 500 meters from east to west, and 1 km from north to south in width.
There are a main castle tower, three defensive towers, and five castle gates in this site.
Entrance gate of Hirosaki Castle
Hirosaki Castle in spring
The first castle tower was burnt down due to a lightning strike in 1627.
It had not been reconstructed for a long time, but the current castle tower was built in 1811.
This is the northernmost original castle tower in Japan.
It is a three-storied tower, and the height is 14.4 meters.
Now, it is open to the public as a museum.
Since 1903, about 2,600 cherry trees have been planted in this site, so the cherry blossoms are really beautiful.
The cherry trees are in full bloom at the end of April.
At that time, we can see the cherry blossoms in full bloom only in this area in Japan.
So, many tourists visit here.
How to get here
By route bus, get off at "Shiyakusho-mae" stop.
About 15 minutes from JR Hirosaki station.