One of the best three castles in Japan, Osaka Castle/日本三名城の一つ、大坂城
I went to Kansai area from the end of February to beginning of March, 2007. During my stay in Kaansai area, I visited various sightseeing spots. Osaka Castle was the fisrt place I visited.
Osaka castle was build by Hideyoshi TOYOTOMI at the end of 16th century. But later, the castle was burned down and repaired by Tokugawa Shogunate. All Japanese learn about the castle at school and I had imagined a huge castle until I visited. My first impression was "It's not so big as I expected."
But its stone-base that forms its moat and stone wall were specutacular. Here below is a photo of the biggest rock named Takoishi, or Octopus Stone. It has a stain whose shape looks like an octopus. Hence, the rock was named Tako(Octopus)-Ishi(Stone). (Sorry, you can't see an Octopus stain in the photo below. But you can know how big the stone is.)
When I entered inside of the castle, the sight surprised me a lot. It was like a hotel lobby. You can go up to the donjon by elevator. High-tech utilities are equiped. However, you don't have to be disappointed at those things. Many interesting documents and products are on display and you surely enjoy them.
Akiko lives in a city next to Hakodate and loves to drive around Hakodate and surrounding area. I hope people who visit or live in the Southwest area of Hokkaido come to love the area, too. 函館の隣町在住で道南エリアのドライブ大好きAkikoです。道南を訪れたり、住んでいる人が土地を好きになってくれたらなぁ、と思います。