I have been to Japan so many times but it was actually my first time to have a tour in the Nijo Castle, a historical landmark in Kyoto. At first I was expecting that the castle would be look like the other huge castle in Japan. However, this one is different but it didn't disappoint me and I was quite impress.
|Ninomaru Palace of Nijo Castle|
Here's a little background:
Nijo Castle is constructed as the residence of first Tokugawa shogun, Tokugawa Ieyasu in the Edo Period and completed by his successor after 23 years. It is consist of five buildings with a total are of 275,000 sq. m. and features three gardens with ponds, brigades and various plants and trees. In the modern day, the castle is considered as one of the most interesting cultural and architectural sites in Kyoto and also recognized as UNESCO World Heritage Site.
The Nijo Castle is surrounded by massive stone walls and divided into three areas: the Honmaru or the main circle of defense, Ninomaru which is the secondary and the gardens around these palace. At the west side of the main entrance is the Karamon Gate which is the entrance gate of the Ninomaru Palace. At present, the Karamon Gate is underconstruction for its maintenance.
So sad that taking photos inside the Ninomaru Palace is forbidden. :(
|Tranquil pond in Ninomaru Garden|
Ninomaru Garden, located at the west of the Ninomaru Palace, is a circuit style garden. The arrangement of rocks, calm water of the pond, plants and trees make the place more wonderful. A very peaceful garden and absolutely beautiful.
Honmaru palace is a magnificent five story palace. Unlike the Ninomaru Palace, it is not open to the public unless there is a special occassion. Visitors are only allowed to walk in its garden.
Seiryu-en Garden, a mixture style of Japanese and Western garden, is designed by Kobori Enshu along with the Karamon Gate. It has two tea house and used as the reception facility in Kyoto.
Since there are many cherry and plum trees, Nijo Castle is a perfect destination every season of cherry blossom during mid March up to the third week of April. There is also a special illumination event at night in the castle ground during this season.
blogging with lots of fun,