Nakijin Castle Ruins is a famous castle located in Nakijin Village, Kunigami-gun, Okinawa Prefecture. The history is old and the castle is said to date back to the 13th century. Inside the castle, you can see various relics such as restored walls, stone walls and gates. Furthermore, it is an attractive spot where you can view cherry blossoms and the sea.
Great Point of Nakijin Castle Ruins
Nakijin Castle Ruins is a precious castle that was registered as a World Heritage Site in 2000 as one of the “Gusuku Sites and Related Properties of the Kingdom of Ryukyu”. Furthermore, six years later, it has been selected as one of Japan's top 100 castles.
The Nakijin Castle Ruins are the same size as the Okinawan Shuri Castle, which has a vast area of about 5 ha.
How to Enjoy the Architecture
Nakijin Castle Ruins is a vast castle ruin consisting of seven districts. There are more than 12 view points including the outline, gates, and uneven marks. Among them, “Shijimajokaku” is at the back gate of Nakijin Castle and is a valuable spot that remains in its original form. The stone wall at the border with the castle draws a beautiful curve using the topography.
In addition to the sophistication of the stone wall, you can not miss the superb view from the castle. It is said that there was a northern shrine surrounding "Umya" in the middle of the castle. “Uchibaru”, located one step higher than the north shrine, is the best view spot in the castle. You can see the whole Nakijin village, Kunigami mountains, and on a clear day, you can see the remote island Yoron Island in Kagoshima, and overlook the sea.
Explore Facilities Related to Nakijin Castle Ruins
If you want to see the Nakijin Castle ruins, stop by at related facilities. First of all, at the rest area in the Nakijin Village Gusuku Exchange Center where you can buy tickets, you can see a video commentary on World Heritage sites and Nakijin Castle ruins. From there, follow the route and you will be able to appreciate the "Outdoor Model of Nakijin Castle Ruins". Here, check the location of the ruins in the castle and the places where you worship gods.
After visiting the Nakijin Castle Ruins, you should visit the Nakijin Village History and Culture Center, which is past the Nakijin Village Castle Exchange Center. It is possible to appreciate materials such as ceramics excavated from Nakijin Castle Ruins and ruins excavated in Nakijin Village.
Famous Festival held at Nakijin Castle Ruins
“Nakijin Gusuku Cherry Blossom Festival” is held at Nakijin Castle Ruins from late January to early February. During the period, you can enjoy the traditional performing arts of Nakijin Village and experience the traditional costumes of Okinawa at the Heiromon Plaza and the Center Plaza in front of the Castle Exchange. In addition, the castle walls are lit up at night, creating a fantastic scene. Also check out the event of the illumination of the approach from Heiromon to the castle with candlelight.
Famous Flower in Nakijin Castle Ruins
Nakijin Castle Ruins is famous as a cherry blossom spot. Prunus campanulata is in full bloom on the 753 stairway from Heiromon to Ushimi. The flower is characterized by its colorful pink and you will be amazed by its beauty.
About Nakijin Castle
- Construction year: 13th century
- Festival Cherry blossom viewing around Nakijin Castle Ruins, Nakijin Gusuku Cherry Blossom Festival: late January-early February
- Nakijin Castle Ruins Tanabata Festival: Early July
- Spot name: Nakijin Castle Ruins
- Street address: 5101 Nakijin Village, Kunigami-gun, Okinawa Prefecture 905-0428
- Access: Naha Airport → [Yanbaru Express Bus] Approximately 2 hours and 30 minutes → Nakijin joseki-iriguchi ... 15 minutes on foot
- Wi-Fi: Available (Yanbaru FreeWi-Fi)
- Language: English, Chinese, Korean
- Ticket Purchase: At acceptance
- Credit cards: VISA, MasterCard, JCB, American Express