Sendai Castle

From Jcastle.info

Sendai10.jpg

History

Date Masamune received increased lands around Sendai for giving his support to Tokugawa in the Battle of Sekigahara. Sendai Castle never had a large main keep like many castles of this time period. There are various theories why and some proof that there were plans to build a large 5 story keep though it was never carried out. Even without a large main keep it was still an impressive castle with three 3 story yagura and a great honmaru palace. Date Tadamune added the Ninomaru after he became lord of Sendai.

After the Boshin War, the honmaru was torn down. During a fire in 1882 most of the ninomaru was burned to the ground and the remaining buildings of the castle were destroyed during the bombings of WWII.

Date Masamune is one of the most interesting figures of his time period. Known as the "One Eyed Dragon" (he lost the use of his right eye to smallpox), he was feared by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and later became a deputy Shogun in the Tokugawa regime. Masamune actively promoted culture and industry. He built the Osaki Hachiman Shrine in Sendai and the Zuiganji Temple in Matsushima. He organized improvements to the rivers, forests and transformed the Osaki plain into a fertile rice field. Masamune also built a ship and dispatched his own men including Hasekura Tsunenaga to the Pope in Rome. Masamune was one of the most intelligent daimyo of his time.

Visit Notes

The otemon guardhouse in the picture above is a fair distance (10+ minute walk) from the honmaru and museum. Either find it on a map or ask for directions at the museum. I recommend taking the sightseeing bus to the main castle gate, visit the museum and grounds and then walk downhill towards this guardhouse. Then you can get back on the sightseeing bus from the nearby Sendai City Museum. The bus leaving the castle grounds tends to be very full and you may not get on easily from there.

Loading map...

Gallery



Castle Profile
English Name Sendai Castle
Japanese Name 仙台城
Alternate Names Aoba-jo
Founder Date Masamune
Year Founded 1600
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition No main keep but other buildings
Designations Top 100 Castles, National Historic Site
Historical Period Edo Period
Features turrets, stone walls, walls
Visitor Information
Access Sendai Station (Tohoku main line), 15 minutes by bus
Visitor Information
Time Required
Website http://www.sendaijyo.com
Location Sendai, Miyagi Prefecture
Coordinates 38° 15' 10", 140° 51' 21"
Loading map...
Admin
Year Visited 2003, 2010
Visits September 12, 2003; May 22, 2010
Added to Jcastle 2003


2.72
(29 votes)
Add your comment
Jcastle.info welcomes all comments. If you do not want to be anonymous, register or log in. It is free.


avatar

ARTHatamoto

22 months ago
Score 0++
I heard that Sendai in the Edo Period was big on forest agriculture and many people had trees planted in their backyards.
avatar

FurinkazanHatamoto

43 months ago
Score 0++
I went to this site today. The works are apparently done, because i didn't saw any. I took the Loople Sendai bus with a 1-day pass. With the pass you have some reductions at some sites. I visited first the Zuihoden mauseleum. After that i went directly to the castle. The route of the loople bus changed a little bit, but it still has a stop at the honmaru, but at the foot of the ishigaki. There is indeed not a lot to see, appart from the statue of Date Masamune. The Aoba-castle museum was open, but there isn't a lot to see. The fee is normally 700¥, but with the pass it's 500¥. You may take photos, but without flash. Then i went to the Sendai City museum. This museum was more interesting i found, with a lot of english explanations. Then i walked to the Waki-yagura. I realised that i missed the last loople bus and went to a city busstop. When the bus arrived, it was full. I walked to the station. It's about 3 km from the castle-site. My hotel is in the vicinity of the station.
avatar

JcastleHatamoto

59 months ago
Score 0++
Kei, Thanks for visiting and sharing the information. It's great to see progress is underway with a completion in sight!
avatar

Anonymous user #1

59 months ago
Score 0++

It's my first visit of this site. I was born in Sendai-city and like Sendai castle/ So I would write about reconstruction of this castle. Because of extremely big earthquake,the walls broke down.Now reconstruct this wall By the end of March 2015. For more information, please take a look at the following sites. http://www.sendaijyo.com/

http://www.c...kkyuu6_1.pdf
avatar

Anonymous user #1

63 months ago
Score 0++

I visited Sendai in October 2012.

At that time I've been told by guides that they are planing to reconstruct the pavilions of Masamune on the castle hill, because they still have some of the original features stored ( I think in museum). One thing that I really liked, but I think many foreigners will miss on, were the guides. They were 'in-character', dressed up as Masamune's vassals, giving the description of the castle and they spoke about their lord as if he's still alive! If it wasn't for my japanese husband translating (the guides also tried to help using some English) I think I would miss out a great fun! I wish they would do such tours in English...
avatar

RebolforcesAshigaru

69 months ago
Score 0++
Visited today. Followed in the instructions on leaving via City Museum. Good advice. Lots of road works on the way up. One section of wall still under tarpaulins and in repair. But all walls where the Castle Museum sits are intact and impressively curved.
avatar

Frank T.Gunshi

87 months ago
Score 0++
The view of the town is great, and I enjoyed riding around the area, but there's really not much to see of the original site aside from walls, large as they may be. If you're going to Sendai, by all means visit this site. Otherwise, there are other places more worthwhile.
avatar

JcastleHatamoto

92 months ago
Score 0++

I have a few notes on the following page about reconstruction efforts that I know of. If anyone has something to add please let me know. The regulations about rebuilding historical sites are much more strict than in the past so there will probably be fewer reconstructions now, but they will be of better quality.

http://www.j...tion-Repairs
avatar

Anonymous user #1

93 months ago
Score 0++
one question-are there any plans to rebuild the keeps on any of the sites where only the yagura and other buildings survived [i'd put a question mark, but there seems to be something wrong with my keyboard] Anyway, if you have any info on the possible reconstructions of keep-less castles, could you write them down here
avatar

LearoyPeasant

93 months ago
Score 0++
Visited this castle at night and there is basically just ruins there and a museum, which of course was not open. There is a great view of the city and also a great statue of Date Masamune
avatar

JcastleHatamoto

95 months ago
Score 0++
Thanks it's fixed. Links to external sites are so hard to keep updated.
avatar

KrisGunshi

95 months ago
Score 0++

BTW, link comes up 404. Not Found

The requested URL /kankokoryu/pointnojoho/point7.html was not found on this server.

Try http://www.s...0000002.html for info in English.
avatar

KrisGunshi

96 months ago
Score 0++
A person I knew from Sendai told me I wouldn't see any snow in March; my train pulled into the station as snowflakes started falling and although it was only a small snowfall I had the joy of being able to show photos of the stone walls of Aoba-jo harboring patches of snow in their shadows. The statue of Date Masamune was quite hard to photograph in the afternoon sun but there were great views and I was happy to finally see it with my own eyes. (I used to sing 'Aoba-jo koiuta' at karaoke just to see that statue). If you are in the area you should also see brightly-painted Zuihoden, Date's Mausoleum, on the adjacent hillside. I also went to Matsushima and Zuiganji, the museum has many items belong to the Date clan. I didn't have so much time because I was using 18-kippu; I'm planning on going there again with my brother. I went a while ago so it should be interesting to see how it has changed seeing as Masamune is more popular and marketable than ever.
avatar

UsagiAshigaru

96 months ago
Score 0++
If you are driving through Sendai, it is worth a quick stop. Small castle.
avatar

AlicemacgeePeasant

98 months ago
Score 0++
The view from the castle grounds is simply magnificent! I wish the castle could be reconstructed as it was originally built one day, though it would be a really tough task to do. But I'm glad they didn't carry out their initial plan of \reconstructing"the yagura that has never been there in the first place. Kudos to all the people who struggled against that plan and to the people who did the fine job on excavations and restoration of the castle walls."""
avatar

Anonymous user #1

103 months ago
Score 0++
I visited Sendai Castle and Odawara Castle this April. I found the Odawara Castle is far more attractive both in building and museum collections.(Sendai Museum closed during my visit, thus I can't give any comment.) In addition, some Date family related sites in Sendai city and nearby area are worth visit.
avatar

JcastleHatamoto

103 months ago
Score 0++
A famous Edo Period castle with a huge stone wall