Tour of the ruins of a castle built by Kenshin Uesugi, a feudal lord who had never lost, and ruins of scattered forts
The ruins of Kasugayama Castle still leave the characteristics of a mountain castle (the castle wall was built at a mountain that is advantageous in terms of defense), such as trenches and outer bailey. The castle is also counted as the 100 best castles in Japan.
It is a popular castle as Kenshin Uesugi, a famous feudal load who ranks the top 10 popular feudal loads among feudal loads during the Sengoku Period, lived there. Kuruwa (small premise) that serves as the backbone for the castle which is called honmaru is a 20-minute walk from the side of Kasugayama Shrine by climbing a mountain path. The ruin of honmaru at a height of 180 m above sea level was intended to look down enemies who invade the castle, and a place with a view was selected to build honmaru. Therefore, it's fantastic as you can have a grandstand view of Joetsu City, Kubiki Plain, and the Sea of Japan.
Around Mt. Kasugayama are many forts (fortresses). It's good to confirm their ruins far away while checking them on a map, and if you actually visit them, you might be able to see the policy of Kenshin Uesugi who continued winning and the history of wars in this area. The forts within the range around 2-6 km away from the mountain are Banyaguchi Fort, Banya Fort, Nagasawa Fort, Nagahama Fort, and Jogamine Fort in the west, Okimi Fort in the north, Toyamine Fort, Utsuo Fort, and Takidera Fort in the southern complex landscape, and Nagaikeyama Fort, Tojo Fort, and Otate Castle on the eastern plain.
Basically, ruins of the castle and forts are scattered in wide-spreading mountain and nature, so you can have a stroll in nature while feeing historic romanticism. As the ruins are popular, you will encounter people who come and go for tour in all seasons.
Address: Nakayashiki, Joetsu-shi, Niigata
Phone: 025-526-5111 (Tourism Promotion Division of Joetsu City)
Directions: 5 minutes by car from Kasugayama Station (two and half hours from Tokyo) of JR Shinetsu Main Line