Hikone Castle is a Japanese Edo-period castle in the city of Hikone, in Shiga Prefecture. It is considered the most significant historical building in Shiga. Hikone is one of only 12 Japanese castles with the original keep, and one of only five castles listed as a national treasure.HistoryHikone Castle traces its origin to 1603 when Ii Naokatsu, son of the former daimyō Ii Naomasa, ordered its construction. The keep was originally built in 1575, as part of Ōtsu Castle, and was moved to Hikone by the Ii clan. Other parts of the castle were moved from Nagahama Castle. Hikone Castle was completed in 1622. Naokatsu's lands had been taken from him in the interval by the Tokugawa shogunate, and when his brother Naotake assumed control of the area around Ōmi Province, he was able to complete the castle by collecting stones from the former Sawayama Castle.When the Meiji era began in 1868, many castles were scheduled to be dismantled, and only a request from the emperor himself, touring the area, kept Hikone Castle intact. Today it remains one of the oldest original-construction castles in Japan. The main keep of Hikone Castle was designated a National Treasure by the Ministry of Education, Science, Sports and Culture in 1952. Hikone Castle also has several parts which are designated Important National Cultural Assets: Umaya (Stable), Tenbin Yagura (Balance Scale Turret), Taikomon Yagura (Drum Gate Turret) and Nishinomaru Sanju Yagura (West Bailey Three-story Turret). It couldn't be easier to arrange your visit to Hikone Castle Museum and many more Hikone attractions: make an itinerary online using Inspirock's Hikone trip builder tool .
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Hikone Castle Museum Reviews
The Hikone Castle Museum located halfway between the JR Hakone Station and the Castle. Worth to pay a visit there in order to know more information and view the artifacts about the area in the past..... more »
Great castle but sadly no description in other languages. Staff friendly and tried to be helpful.. The museum was very enjoyable and empty of tourists. It has a lovely wooden building showing how... more »
Excellent museum. I particularly liked the reconstruction of a Daimyo residence including descriptions of rooms small gardens. A bonus was an exhibition of 16th and 17th centuries samurai swords from renowned sword smiths.
The best value tourist attraction even in the castle. There are detailed explanations about the history of Hikone(which said it belonged to Ishida Mitsunari by the way, before the Ii family razed it and rebuilt it), tea rooms, medieval artifacts... and it's clean and well maintained. You might need a good command of Japanese to fully enjoy it though as English introductions are not too thorough.
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