Osaka Castle is enormous and one of the most impressive castles I’ve ever seen. Even the walk up to the castle is grand as it sits in a large park enclosed within giant stone walls and surrounded by a huge moat. My brother and sister had been talking non-stop about the castle in the run-up to our trip to Osaka and so I was really looking forward to seeing it for myself.
My first glimpse of the castle came at night, when we decided to take a night-time stroll over to the castle park, which was around the corner from our hotel. The castle is floodlit at night and the beautiful structure illuminated on high before us was incredible. It was hard to capture the sheer scale and beauty of the castle on my phone’s camera (below).
Two days later, we headed over to the castle for a closer look and to explore the museum within. The castle was destroyed and rebuilt a number of times over the centuries, and the present version of the castle tower opened in 1931. It was remodelled extensively in 1997 and is now home to a museum that recounts the history of Osaka, the castle and Toyotomi Hideyoshi, the general who founded the castle in 1583.
On entering the museum, you’re taken in a lift to the top of the tower where there’s a viewing platform from which you get splendid views across the sprawling city and the pretty park below. From there, you make your way down the tower and around the various displays in the museum. Among the artefacts on show are screens and prints that depict the military battles that took place in and around Osaka, letters, armour and some gorgeous items of clothing.
I didn’t really know anything about Osaka’s history or the castle before my visit, so I found the museum really interesting and I was fascinated by all the objects on display. It was really compelling and well worth the visit, and certainly lived up to my siblings’ hype.