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  1. Shibushi Castle

    Castle Shibushi Castle

    Shibushi Castle (志布志城 Shibushi-jō) is a mountain castle (山城 yamajirō) located in Shibushi City in eastern Kagoshima (former Hyūga Province 日向国). A thriving port engaged in trade with foreign powers, the feudal lords of southern Kyūshu fought intense battles for its control in the Nanboku-chō...
  2. Obi Castle

    Castle Obi Castle

    Obi Castle (飫肥城 Obi-jō) is located in the city of Nichinan, in the south of former Hyūga Province (日向国, modern-day Miyazaki). The Shimazu and the Itō clans contested this area and its vital trade port of Aburatsu (油津) in a fierce conflict that could almost be called a "Hundred Years War". In the...
  3. Miyakono Castle

    Castle Miyakono Castle

    Miyakono Castle (都之城 Miyakono-jō) was a mountain castle (山城 yamashiro) located in Miyakonojo City (都城市) in Miyazaki Prefecture. It was also known as Tsurumaru Castle (鶴丸城 Tsurumaru-jō) and has been designated a Historic Site. Miyako-no Castle was built by Hongō Yoshihisa (北郷義久), the second...
  4. Kamo Castle

    Castle Kamo Castle

    Kamo Castle (蒲生城 Kamou-jō) is a mountain castle located in Kamou Town, Aira City, about 7 kilometres northwest of the innermost part of Kinko Bay. It is located on Mt. Ryuga (龍ヶ山 Ryūgayama, lit. "Dragon Mountain"), which overhangs to the north, across the river of the city. It is a typical...
  5. Kiyoshiki Castle

    Castle Kiyoshiki Castle

    Kiyoshiki Castle (清色城 Kiyoshiki-jō) is a former hilltop castle located in Irikicho, Satsumasendai, Kagoshima Prefecture. It is not clear when Kiyoshiki Castle was constructed. It is assumed that it was built sometime after the Shibuya clan moved from Sagami to Satsuma, following the Battle of...
  6. Kagoshima Castle

    Castle Kagoshima Castle

    Kagoshima Castle (鹿児島城, Kagoshima-jō), also known as Tsurumaru Castle (鶴丸城), is located in Kagoshima City, Kagoshima Prefecture, and was the headquarters of the Shimazu clan. In 1601, one year after the Battle of Sekigahara, the 18th head of the Shimazu clan, Tadatsune (島津忠恒, 1576-1638)...
  7. Ei Castle

    Castle Ei Castle

    The ruins of Ei Castle (頴娃城跡 Ei jōseki) are located in Minamikyūshū, Kagoshima. The castle site was designated a Historic Site of Kagoshima Prefecture in 2005. History Driving through the southern part of Satsuma Penisula from Makurazaki to Ibusuki, there is a 2-kilometre wide short corridor...
  8. Chiran Castle

    Castle Chiran Castle

    Chiran Castle (知覧城, Chiran-jō) is a former castle complex in Chiran, Kagoshima Prefecture. Chiran was a town located in the Kawabe district. Chiran and the towns of Kawabe (川辺) and Ei (頴娃) were merged into Minamikyūshū (南九州) city in 2007. As seen in the aerial picture above, Chiran Castle was...
  9. Izaku Castle

    Castle Izaku Castle

    Izaku Castle (伊作城 Izaku-jō) is a castle complex in the town of Hioki, Kagoshima Prefecture, that was constructed in the 13th century. It served as the headquarters of the Shimazu clan until 1536 when Shimazu Takahisa relocated his base to Ichiūji Castle. (一宇治城) History: Izaku Castle itself...
  10. Ichiuji Castle

    Castle Ichiuji Castle

    Ichiūji Castle (一宇治城 Ichiūji-jō) is a former castle complex located in Hioki City, Kagoshima Prefecture. At the beginning of the Kamakura Period, Ki no Shiro Tokikiyo (紀四朗時清), also known as Ijūin Tokikiyo (伊集院時清) was appointed governor of Ijūin County. He constructed Ichiuji Castle where he...
  11. Kajiki Castle

    Castle Kajiki Castle

    Kajiki Castle (加治木城 Kajiki-jō) was a mountain castle in former Ōsumi Province (modern-day eastern Kagoshima Prefecture) which had been used from the Nanboku-chō Period (1336-1392) to the Sengoku Period. It is located on a plateau which pushes out southwest towards the Kajiki Plain (加治木の平), the...
  12. Matsushiro Castle

    Castle Matsushiro Castle

    Matsushiro Castle (松代城 Matsushiro-jō) is a "flatland castle" (平城 hirajiro) located in the south of the Nagano Basin, between two arms of Chikuma River. Fans of Takeda Shingen and Uesugi Kenshin might be more familiar with its moniker "Kaizu Castle" (海津城 Kaizu-jō). Shingen constructed Kaizu...
  13. Komoro Castle

    Castle Komoro Castle

    Komoro Castle (小諸城, Komoro-jō) is a hirayama-style castle located in Komoro, central Nagano Prefecture. It is unique as it is situated lower than the surrounding castle town. Komoro Castle is therefore known as Ana-jō (穴城, "Hole Castle"). The lowland along Chikuma River was fortified land...
  14. Tatsuoka Castle

    Castle Tatsuoka Castle

    Tatsuoka Castle (龍岡城 Tasuoka-jō) is located in Saku, Nagano Prefecture, and is the site of a pentagon-shaped bastion constructed in the Bakumatsu period, the final years of the Tokugawa shogunate. There are only two star-shaped fortresses in Japan, the other one being the Goryōkaku (五稜郭) Fort in...
  15. Taguchi Castle

    Castle Taguchi Castle

    Taguchi Castle (田口城 Taguchi-jō) is located in the Saku District of Nagano Prefecture and was the base of local Taguchi clan. The castle came under the rule of Takeda Shingen after his invasion into Saku in 1546. Taguchi Nagayoshi (田口長能) tried to resist the Takeda but was defeated in the Battle...
  16. Hiraga Clan Castle

    Castle Hiraga Clan Castle

    The Hiraga Clan Castle Site (平賀氏城跡 Hiraga-shi-jō seki) is located in Saku City, Nagano Prefecture. It was the residence of the local lord of the Saku district. At the end of the 12th century, Minamoto Moriyoshi, a son of Minamoto no Yoshimitsu (源義光, 1045-1127), became the lord of Hiraga Village...
  17. Uchiyama Castle

    Castle Uchiyama Castle

    Uchiyama Castle (内山城 Uchiyama-jō) is located in the mountains east of Saku City, Nagano Prefecture. The castle was most likely constructed in the early 16th century by the local Ōi (大井) clan who ruled the Saku district. When Takeda Shingen (武田信玄, 1521-1573) invaded the Saku district in 1546...
  18. Toishi Castle

    Castle Toishi Castle

    Toishi Castle (戸石城 or 砥石城) is located in modern-day Ueda City, Nagano Prefecture. The hilltop castle is known for being the location where Takeda Shingen (武田信玄, 1521-1573) suffered his greatest defeat, the "Toishi Rout" (砥石崩れ Toishikuzure). History It is not known when the castle was...
  19. Sanada Residence

    Castle Sanada Residence

    The Sanada Residence (真田氏館) was the headquarters of the Sanada clan before Ueda Castle was constructed. The site is located in the centre of Sanada Village, approximately 7 kilometres northeast of Ueda Castle. The village was also home to other hill-top castles, Toishi Castle or the Sanada Main...
  20. Ueda Castle

    Castle Ueda Castle

    Ueda Castle (上田城 Ueda-jō) is located in central Nagano Prefecture. It was the stronghold of the Sanada clan (真田氏 Sanada-shi) and withstood the onslaught of Tokugawa Ieyasu's armies twice. History Sanada Masayuki (真田安房守 昌幸, 1547-1611) built Ueda Castle along a branch of the Chikuma River in...
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