Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Welcome to Nijo Castle, Kyoto

In mid-November, I went to Nijo Castle (二条城) in Kyoto. Nijo Castle is a UNESCO World Heritage site as part of the Historical Monuments of Ancient Kyoto, and is protected by various Japanese designations such as being a National Treasure, and a National Special Historical site.

Nijo Castle, which was built in 1626, was where the Tokugawa Shogunate resided when they visted Kyoto.  The Tokugawa Shogunate ruled Japan from 17th century to the mid-19th century, and had a huge impact on Japanese history. For example, the Sakoku period (the 200 year period in Japanese history where Japan had almost no foreign relations), which I mentioned in my post about Kobe Ijinkangai and my post about Nagasaki, was established by the Tokugawa Shogunate.



No pictures are allowed inside the buildings, but there is a self-guided tour showing the purpose of each of the rooms. Getting a bit of knowledge on Japanese history and ancient culture may be helpful to understand, as there are different rooms for the castle inhabitants to meet visitors depending on the rank of the visitor.


I rented a wide angle lens for this day trip. It was a lot of fun to use, but a lot heavier than the prime lens that I am used to using. Not sure yet if I can commit to buying one, although I may rent it again!

In addition to the main castles, the gardens are also quite famous, and become quite crowded during the spring and the fall.

Hope you enjoyed my trip to Nijo Castle in Kyoto!

xoxo, K

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