Osaka Castle (Ōsakajō)
Osaka (大阪, Ōsaka) is Japan’s second largest metropolitan area after Tokyo. The construction of Osaka Castle (大阪城, Ōsakajō) started in 1583 on the former site of the Ishiyama Honganji Temple, which had been destroyed by Oda Nobunaga thirteen years earlier. Toyotomi Hideyoshi intended the castle to become the centre of a new, unified Japan under Toyotomi rule. It was the largest castle at the time.
The castle tower is now entirely modern on the inside and features an elevator for easier accessibility.
The tower houses an informative museum about the castle’s history and Toyotomi Hideyoshi.
The entire Osaka Castle Park covers about two square kilometers with open green spaces, sport facilities, a multi-purpose arena (Osakajo Hall) and a shrine dedicated to Toyotomi Hideyoshi.
The park is one of Osaka’s most popular Hanami spots during the cherry blossom season, which usually takes place in early April.
The beautiful moats and the stone walls are made of numerous huge stones and are symbols of the solid defense of the Tokugawa-built Osaka Castle. The moats are 70 to 90 meters in width.
A number of the stone walls stand at both sides of the moats, and are more than 20 meters in height.
The total length of the granite stone walls extends 12 kilometers and there are around 500,000 to 1,000,000 stones used in the structure of the walls.
The beauty of the magnificent stone walls and the moats frame the modern city and provide historic and cultural icon for locals and visitors alike.
Getting to Osaka Castle Tower
The recommended approach to Osaka Castle is through Otemon Gate at the park’s southwestern corner. The closest station is Tanimachi 4-chrome Station along the Tanimachi Subway Line and Chuo Subway Line.
The closest JR station to Osaka Castle is Osakajokoen Station on the JR Loop Line, a 10 minute, 160 yen ride from JR Osaka Station.