Japanese Castles: Fushimi Castle Kyoto
Fushimi Castle 伏見城
Fushimi Castle, which is also known as Momoyama Castle or Fushi-Momoyama Castle, has had a chequered history. The castle was built as a fortified palace and a retirement home for Toyotomi and its main purpose is not purely defensive.
The first Fushimi Castle was destroyed by an earthquake two years after it was completed and was then rebuilt. Plum trees were planted at the site after the earthquake, which gave the mountain its name Momoyama (plum mountain) and helped defined the period as the Azuchi-Momoyama era after the names of Azuchi and Fushimi castles.
The castle, defended by Torii Mototada, was then destroyed again in a famous eleven-day-siege in 1600 and was dismantled under new regulations on castles drawn up by the Tokugawa regime in 1623. The Karamon Gate at Nishi Honganji Temple is taken from Fushimi Castle.
The Fushimi Castle you can see today was built in concrete in 1964 as a "Castle Entertainment Park" and this too was an unfortunate affair: the castle was closed in 2003.
Fushimi Castle interior is now closed to the public (though there are plans to reopen it) but was noted for the tea ceremony room decorated in gold leaf. It is still possible to visit the grounds of the castle.
The mausoleum of Emperor Meiji was built at the original site of Fushimi Castle in 1912.
Gold leaf tea room (chashitsu) at Fushimi-Momoyama Castle in Kyoto
The historic Teradaya inn in Fushimi, south Kyoto
Access To Fushimi
Take the Kintetsu Line to Momoyama-goryo-mae from Kyoto Station or the JR Nara Line to Momoyama Station. The Tomb of the Meiji Emperor is close by as is Nogi Shrine - dedicated to Count Nogi Maresuke (1849-1912), a general who committed suicide along with his wife committed after the funeral of Emperor Meiji. Also of historical incident is the Teradaya - an inn where Sakamoto Ryoma was saved by his future wife Narasaki Ryo running naked from her bath to warn him of approaching assassins. Visitors can still see a sword cut in one of the wooden pillars at the inn.
Tel: 075 622 0243
Admission: 400 yen
Map of Fushimi Castle
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