If you are fascinated by history, Matsumoto Castle is the place to go. Also known as
"Crow Castle" owing to its black exterior, Matsumoto Castle is designated as a National
Treasure. It is one of the oldest extant castles in the country. When it was built, most
of Japan's castles were constructed on hilltops or beside rivers, but this castle was built
From the outside, Matsumoto Castle has an impressive design. It appears to be made up of five stories, but it does in fact contain six. The top story offers a spectacular view of the city of Matsumoto and surrounding snowcapped mountains in the colder seasons. When I visited, I enjoyed taking photographs of the classic red bridge in front of the castle with the stunning Japanese Alps as a backdrop. In spring, the cherry blossoms in the garden are in full bloom, and their color contrasts with that of the black castle.
Information brochures about the castle are readily available, and there are English descriptions throughout. You can also enjoy free tours conducted by volunteer guides.
Name:Petchnapa Lunlalitsakul (Petch)
Bangkok District Office
Cabin Attendant Section
Address: 4-1 Marunouchi, Matsumoto, Nagano
HOURS: 8:30 a.m.–5 p.m.
ACCESS: About a 15-minute walk from Matsumoto Station (JR Shinonoi Line)