Matsuyama Castle 松山城
An imposing fortress that has withstood war and time
Located in the heart of Matsuyama in Ehime Prefecture , Matsuyama Castle offers a bird's-eye view of the area. And as one of 12 original castle keeps, it provides insights into the region as well as into the architecture and history of Japan.
- Seeing 200 cherry trees bloom on the castle grounds from late March to early April
- Catching beautiful panoramic views of the entire city and the Seto Inland Sea
- Experiencing feudal Japan through hands-on exhibits
How to Get There
How to Get There
You can reach the castle by train and then a walk, a tram, or a cable car.
Matsuyama Castle is perched on top of Mt. Katsuyama, and can be reached by ropeway, chairlift, or on foot.
Access to the area is about a five-minute walk from the Okaido tram stop. To get to Okaido tram stop, take the number five tram line from Matsuyama JR Station. From Matsuyama City Station, take the number two or three tram line, then the chairlift or cable car to the top of the mountain. Alternatively, you can walk from Ninomaru Historical Gardens or Shiroyama Park at the base of the mountain for a pleasant 15-minute walk.
One of the twelve
Matsuyama Castle is famed as one of 12 original castle keeps that have survived more or less undamaged since the Edo period.
Burnt down by lightning
Matsuyama Castle was first built in the early 1600s by Kato Yoshiaki. Later, it became home to the Matsudaira family and remained so until the end of the feudal era. The castle burned down in 1784, when it was struck by lightning, but it was reconstructed in 1852.
Shiroyama Park and Ninomaru Historical Garden
Shiroyama Park , at the base of Mt. Katsuyama, is a recreational park with expansive play areas and beautiful views of the castle. And with access to Ninomaru Historical Garden, Shiroyama Park is the perfect place to start or end your exploration of the castle.
Ninomaru Historical Garden originally served as the second most important area of the castle after the Honmaru. While none of the buildings survived, you can see the layout of the lord's residence and offices plus landscaped greenery and ponds.
A gateway to the city's history
Matsuyama Castle has numerous historical buildings, unlike many other Japanese castles. Throughout the various wings of the castle you can see exhibits on weaponry, haiku poetry, traditional construction methods, and more.
* The information on this page may be subject to change due to COVID-19.