Honmaru Goten Palace (Kawagoe Castle) Show mapShow gallery

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Domo arigato.
  • Honmaru Goten - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten Palace (Kawagoe Castle)

  • Honmaru Goten Garden - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten Garden

  • Honmaru Goten Garden - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten Garden

  • Honmaru Goten Feudal Lord and his Vassels - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten, Model of Feudal Lord and His Vassals

  • Honmaru Goten Fusuma - Kawagoe Castle

    Inside Honmaru Goten, Fusuma

  • Honmaru Goten Samurai Armor - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten, Samurai Armor

  • Honmaru Goten Hallway - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten, Hallway

  • Honmaru Goten Interior Fusuma - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten, Interior

  • Honmaru Goten - Kawagoe Castle

    Honmaru Goten, Black and White

  • Honmaru Goten Japan map with top 100 castles

    Honmaru Goten, Map with the Top 100 Castles in Japan

  • Honmaru Goten Palace Entrance Ticket

    Honmaru Goten Entrance Ticket

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Facts & Figures

Honmaru Goten (Inner Circle Palace) is the last remaining part of the Kawagoe Castle and is a designated cultural property of the Saitama Prefecture. It is a typical flatland castle and easily accessible from Tokyo. It belongs to the Top 100 castles in Japan. The size of the former castle area was 8times bigger than what you see today. Honmaru Goten consists of a reception and entrance hall and the chief retainers office. The current building has only one-sixth of the size of the original structure. I really enjoyed the architectural style of the large rooms with tatami mats and the beautiful garden.

  • Honmaru Goten:
  • Opening Hours - 9:00 am to 5:00 pm - (Tuesday - Sunday, last entry at 4:30 pm)
  • Closed - on Mondays, if its a holiday then the following Tuesday is closed
  • Closed - 29th of December till 3rd of January
  • Closed - every 4th Friday of the month
  • Admission Fee - Adults: 100 yen, Students: 50 yen, Children: free

History

Kawagoe Castle´s history is dating back to 1457. It was constructed by Ota Doshin (1411 - 1495) and his son Ota Dokan also know as Sukenaga (1432 - 1486) under the order of general Ogigayatsu Uesugi Mochitomo. Shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu (1543 - 1616) saw Kawagoe Castle as an important defence line for the capital Edo (Tokyo) against attacks from the north. Daimyo Matsudiara Nobutsuna (1596 - 1662) extended and improved the castle in 1639. In the end the castle ground area reached a size of 326000 square meters incl. Honmaru (main bailey - living quarters), Ninomaru (second bailey), Sannomaru (third bailey), Kuruwa (castle walls), 13 gates and 3 watch towers.

During the Edo time (1603 - 1868) in total 21 daimyos (feudal lords) served at the castle under the guidance of the Tokugawa clan. The residence for the lord of the castle is called Honmaru Goten and was constructed in 1848 after a huge fire. Its 16 roofs covering an area of 3388 square meters. The entrance area and the main hall were used as waiting rooms for daimyos (feudal lords) who came for important missions. In 1870 the castle was demolished after the Meiji Restoration. The Government of Saitama designated Honmaru Goten Palace in 1967 as a Tangible Cultural Property. It was listed as one of Japan's Top 100 Castles in 2006. In 2011 after a long renovation phase Honmaru Goten Palace was reopened to the public.

Location Show map

Honmaru Goten Palace is located within the city Kawagoe in the Saitama prefecture.
Address: 2-13-1 Kuruwamachi, Kawagoe, Saitama Prefecture

How to get to Honmaru Goten Palace (Kawagoe Castle)?

  • 10 minute walk from the Warehouse District. The Kawagoe City Museum is located just across the street.

Sightseeing spots

Top:

Nakanomon Moat - It is one of the outer moats of the castle and the old location of the Fujimi Turret.

Realistic dolls - Three period-dressed models of a feudal lord (daimyo) with his vassals are on display.

Top 100 castles stamps - It is a unique chance for collectors to see all 100 Meijo stamps at one spot.

Aoi Crest - Look out for the crest on top of the roof. It is the sign of the Tokugawa clan.

Festival & Events (dates can change without notice)

October

Kawagoe Festival (17th/18th)
Appr. 1 Mio. tourists enjoy the biggest event in Kawagoe every year. The traditional Japanese matsuri (festival) is dating back more than 360 years. It last for 2 days and the parade of 29 floats (Dashi) is the absolute highlight. In 2016 something important happened to the Kawagoe Hikawa Festival. It made it on the list of UNESCO Intangible Cultural Heritage as an outstanding float festival in Japan.