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Ozu Castle

HOME > Japan’s Local Treasures > Ozu Castle


Local sightseeing landmark and a fine illustration of civic commitment

KITA Management



Ozu emerged as a political fief during the late 16th century. By that time, renowned designer Todo Takatora had completed construction on a sturdy castle on a mound overhanging the Hiji River. A thriving castle-town soon materialized along its banks. The Kato clan, local daimyos since 1617, retained control over the Ozu Domain for 13 generations. Although the main keep was dismantled in 1888, the castle’s stone foundations, defensive walls, and four of the turrets have been preserved to this day. Furthermore, a civic movement was launched in the 1990s to recreate the castle keep. Respecting the original materials and techniques was an essential point of the blueprint. In 2004, four beautiful stories, clad in black timber boards and covered with chidori and kara gables, reappeared in Ozu’s skyline. The 19-meter timber tower was the tallest of its kind to be completed in post-war Japan. It represented a milestone in Japanese heritage management, requiring substantial amendments of building regulations. Today it stands proudly as a genuine example of Japanese medieval architecture rehabilitation. Stays are available.


How to get there


It takes 1 hour and 40 minutes from Haneda Airport to Matsuyama Airport. From Matsuyama Airport to Garyu Sanso, it takes 40 minutes on the JR Line. Get off at Iyo Ozu Station, and walk 20 minutes.


903 Ozu Ozu-shi, Ehime-ken


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