Tsumago Castle

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The origins of Tsumago castle date to the Muromachi Period when it was most likely built by the Kiso clan. The Battle of Tsumago Castle in 1583 is considered a part of the series of battles known as the Battle of Komaki and Nagakute. The Kiso sided with Hideyoshi and fought off Ieyasu's forces who were trying to push Hideyoshi out of the Shinano (Nagano Pref.) region. In 1600, the castle was renovated for the Battle of Sekigahara and used as a launching point for attacks against the Mino domain (Gifu Pref.) The castle was decommissioned in 1616 under the One Castle per Domain edict.

Visit Notes

Very little remains here. It is not well maintained but there are some simple signs in English. Visiting Tsumago the same day is highly recommended. The castle is more of a bonus castle to visit while being in Tsumago than the opposite. Nice view of Tsumago from the Honmaru. There is a tourism center at Nagiso station for more information.

photos and profile by Etienne J.


Castle Profile
English Name Tsumago Castle
Japanese Name 妻籠城
Founder Kiso clan (?)
Year Founded Middle of the Muromachi period (1337-1573)
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition Ruins only
Designations Prefectural Historic Site
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Features trenches
Visitor Information
Access From Nagiso station very few buses to Tsumago (300Y); or take a taxi (1350Y, 10mins), then walk 1km from Tsumago OR 3km walk from Nagiso station
Visitor Information Free, always open
Time Required 20 min
Location Nagisomachi, Nagano Prefecture
Coordinates 35° 35' 4.74" N, 137° 35' 44.23" E
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Added to Jcastle 2013
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed
Admin Visits Viewer Donated

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60 months ago
Score 0++

Tsumagojō (Tsumago-juku) 妻籠城 [妻籠宿]

Tsumago Castle is a ruin located on a hillside overlooking Tsumago-juku, a famous post-town along the Nakasendō (Interior Trunk Road). The castle has some identifiable features such as horikiri (trenches) and a central bailey, the flattened portion of the hilltop. Although there is a dobashi (earth-piled bridge), this was made by villagers in modern times; originally it was a trench with a small wooden bridge spanning it. Tsumagojō makes for a nice park and is easy to climb. From the main bailey one can also get a view of the town and its surroundings, although Kōtokuji in town is much more accessible and offers a more intimate, if partial, view.