What girl hasn’t dreamed of being a princess? I got to live out this childhood fantasy at Osaka Castle, one of the most famous castles in Japan.
Ōsaka-jō, as it is known in Japanese, is surrounded by large rock walls that would have fortified the castle against any intruders. Also discouraging outsiders is a moat that surrounds the base of the wall. Even now there are lookout points on the perimeter where soldiers would have been stationed to defend the castle.
But, the similarity to European castles ends there. The castle structure looks distinctly Japanese with all the intricate carvings and golden accents. The castle itself spans many stories and has a museum that houses huge amounts of historical artifacts. In addition to this, there are videos playing that explain certain parts of the castle’s history. Too bad it’s all in Japanese. Still, it’s worth a bit of your time as the video shows close-ups of tapestry and artwork that are hard to see on the real items.
Best of all is the top-floor observation area where you can see 360 degrees of Osaka. The views of the city are amazing, and you can catch glimpses of the mountains on good days.