Chikuzen Sakata Castle
Sakatajō, a yamajiro (mountain castle), was one of 24 castles controlled by the Akizuki Clan during the Sengoku Period. Remains include earthworks such as ample terracing on the slopes of the mountainside, yokobori (lateral moats), dorui (embankments) and a large horikiri (trench built into the mountain's ridgeline). The ruin is now the site of the Akizuki-Hachimangū, a shrine to the God of War.
Sakatajō proved much more challenging than I first anticipated. First I climbed to the shrine to Hachiman. Up and down the hill I noticed terracing on the slopes which formerly, I must suppose, constituted small enclosures. At the bottom of the hill was a large and fetid tarn which, I knew from a map, separated me from a large trench. I tried to descend from the shrine and came across several kuruwa this way, but the wildlife was something like a jungle and rain had made the embankments slippery, causing me to slip and slide about. After crashing through the undergrowth and managing to claw my way out of the jungle, I descended the mount and made my way around it via paved roads. Eventually I came to a path which led to a tea plantation built on the hillside. Beyond this was the large trench I had been seeking spanned by the "tea moon" bridge. Nothing was signposted and everything was guesswork and exhausting dead ends on my part, so when I finally came upon the trench, the site's most obvious ruin, I was quite chuffed.
|English Name||Chikuzen Sakata Castle|
|Year Founded||Sengoku Period|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Artifacts||Baileys, Sub-baileys, Karabori|
|Access||Amagi Station on the Amagin Line; Bus to Akizuki|
|Visitor Information||24/7 free|
|Time Required||One Hour|
|Location||Asakura, Fukuoka Prefecture|
|Coordinates||33° 27' 49.00" N, 130° 41' 33.61" E|
|Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|
|Added to Jcastle|