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Bitchu Matsuyama Castle, Takahashi

(180+ reviews on the web)
Castle Historic Site
Look through the mists of time at Bitchu Matsuyama Castle. Perched high on a steep mountain, this is the oldest and highest surviving castle in the country, and one of only 12 mountain-top fortifications to have survived the post-feudal age. Consider a morning visit, when the castle seems to sit magically upon an ocean of clouds that stretch across the valley. You'll need to hike about 20 minutes from the end of the road to the top, or about an hour from the station, so be sure to wear comfortable shoes and bring along plenty of water. Our Takahashi trip builder makes visiting Bitchu Matsuyama Castle and other Takahashi attractions simple, and helps you make a travel plan personal to you.
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Reviews
TripAdvisor
  • It's a 20 min upward climb to the castle from the shuttle bus station (wear sneakers). The path can be muddy and slippery when wet. The scenery is very nice up the hill and the remaining buildings are...  more »
  • Great hike and the castle is cool. It was nice to go in and not many tourists at all. I would go just for the hike and to do something outside of the tourist traps.  more »
  • There is a sunken hearth in tenshu (keep of tower) which is rare for Japanese medieval castle. Notable as the castle with the highest elevation above sea level in Japan at 430 meters.  more »
Google
  • Beautiful, small castle with gorgeous views overlooking the city. Definitely on the list to visit if you're interested in original castles, as there are not many left. Also, probably due to the remote location, it's not very crowded and the hike up is steep. There are buses running that you can take. Cheap 300¥ admission.
  • Small, but adorable castle at the top of a mountain. You can take a bus about 4/5 of the way to the top, but it's a hike from there. Beware the steep steps within the castle.
  • Small mountain top castle with a great view. It's a bit of effort to get up to it but i'd recommend it as the castle itself has been restored beautifully and the views across the country side are great.
  • It's a very small castle (feels more like a house on the inside) but it's also Japan's oldest, and is located on top of a forested mountain rather than the middle of a city.
  • One of the few original castles of Japan and this one has spectacular views over the town from it. You will need to take a cab to get here from the train station as it is quite far.