Explore the imposing Matsuyama Castle with harmonious panoramic top views
One of Japan's twelve original castles that have survived the post-feudal era since 1868 more or less undamaged, Matsuyama Castle in Ehime Prefecture is an important gateway to the city's as well as Japan’s history and architecture. First built by Kato Yoshiaki in the early 1600s, the current three-story castle keep dating from 1854 displays many items of the Matsudaira family like samurai swords, old palanquins and armor, making it an excellent example of a feudal castle in Japan. As perched on top of Mt. Katsuyama, Matsuyama Castle provides a bird's-eye view of the city and the Seto Inland Sea, and visitors can easily reach the structure by a ropeway and a chairlift system. Another highlight of any visit is Shiroyama Park, a recreational park with about 200 cherry trees on the castle grounds. Around late March to early April each year, this park becomes a lovely cherry blossom spot alluring many local people and tourists.