Senshu Park – An Unusual Castle Park in Akita City

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Just minutes away from JR Akita Station, the Senshu Park isn’t just another park that you can find in Japan. In the park, you will find a castle, a tea ceremony tea house, three shrines, a museum, an art gallery, and even a library! What is even more awesome is the castle has been recognised as one of the best 100 castles in Japan and the cherry blossom scenery in the park is also one of the top 100 cherry blossom spots in the country!

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Kakunodate Town – The Little Kyoto of Northeastern Japan

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Kakunodate Town or Kakunodatemachi (角館町), is a town in Akita Prefecture that is known as “Michinoku no ko Kyoto (みちのくの小京都)”, or “Northeastern’s Little Kyoto”. The town used to be the home for the Samurai stationed at Kakunodate Castle back in the Edo period (1603 – 1868). Even now, traces of the presence of the samurai remain a vivid reminder of their glory days during the Edo period.

Kakunodate is an escape from the big-city hubbub. The tranquil atmosphere will heal your tiredness from the exhausting daily grind. And of course, the delicious local cuisine is another reason why we love Kakunodate!

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Kenrokuen – Explore Japan’s Most Famous Garden

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Amongst the Three Great Gardens of Japan, Kenrokuen Garden (兼六園) is probably the most famous (with the other two being the Kōrakuen (後樂園) in Okayama Prefecture and the Kairakuen (偕樂園) in Ibaraki Prefecture). This National Places of Scenery Beauty is practically the symbol of Kanazawa if not, the entire Ishikawa Prefecture.

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Hirosaki Castle and Hirosaki Park – A Romantic Spot to Be

Those who know of Hirosaki Castle (弘前城) or Hirosaki Park (弘前公園) probably know them because of their reputation for stunning cherry blossoms. More than two hundred thousand people visit Hirosaki for its Cherry Blossom Festival (弘前さくらまつり) each year! No wonder why it was chosen as one of the top three cherry blossom viewing spots in Japan as well as one of the three most popular illuminated (at night) cherry blossom viewing spots in the country.

If you are a fan of the anime “Demon Slayer”, you may also want to see the tree that might have inspired Nezuko’s (Tanjiro’s sister) namesake.

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Himeji Castle – The Most Elegant Castle in Japan

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Nowadays, many Japanese castles have been included in the World Heritage Register. But, when it comes to the ranking determined by the Japan Castle Foundation, there can only be ONE castle that is ranked first place.

Himeji Castle (姫路城), also known as the White Heron Castle or Shirasagi-Jō (白鷺城) in Japanese, got its nickname as the castle’s white walls and white roofs are reminiscent of a heron gracefully expanding its wings. This castle with such an elegant appearance, together with some other factors, was again chosen to be the best castle amongst hundreds of castles in Japan in the Foundation’s latest release!

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