- A few facts
- A military castle
- Step inside for a small time travel
- Have a walk inside in castle town and get some good soba noodles
A few facts
The oldest castle tower in Japan has 5 tiers and 6 floors, and has been preserved in its current state for 400 years.
A military castle
Along with it’s impressive exterior, Matsumoto Castle is also built for military strategies and gun battles. It has fewer windows and more openings to accommodate gun barrels. Ishitosohi, or openings to drop stones onto soldiers climbing the stone walls, is another impressive feature of this castle. Th castle was made for both offensive and defensive military strategies.
Step inside for a small time travel
The first floor of the castle was a warehouse for food, weapons, and ammunition. There are no windows on the third floor, which was used as the conference room for military planning. It looks like the tower has only 5 floors from outside, but it actually has 6! You can’t tell it from the exterior, so it’s referred to as a secret room. The 4th floor was a room for the lords and the 5th floor was for meetings of the chief vassals. The top floor is an observation tower. It’s fun to see these rooms and imagine the military activities that took place there.
The 4th floor’s staircase is the steepest in Japan, at an angle of 61 degrees. Its purpose was to make it difficult for the enemy to ascend inside the castle.
We recommend visiting the Matsumoto city Museum, located inside the park. Admission is free with with your Matsumoto Castle ticket.
Have a walk inside in castle town and get some good soba noodles
After touring the castle, why not walk around the small castle town?
There are plenty of old fashioned shops like toy stores, cheap snack shops, and restaurants.
Nagano prefecture is also famous for its Soba noodles so you’ll find many soba stores and restaurants in the city. The texture of the soba noodle, its color, and the taste of the soup differs from shop to shop, so why not try out several and compare them? I ate soba twice for lunch and dinner.
4-1 Marunouchi, Matsumoto city