Katsuren Castle

From Jcastle.info

Katsuren03.jpg

History

The 10th lord of the castle, Amawari Aji, is the last and most well known lord of Katsuren Castle. He is famous for fostering prosperous international trade and many shards of Chinese pottery and tiles were found on the site of Katsuren Castle. He was also a cunning and deceiving lord. It is said that he pushed the 9th lord Mochizuki Aji off the top of the walls when he tricked Mochizuki to come up there one night and thus assumed lordship of the castle. Mochizuki was considered to be a tyrant so Amawari was a savior to the people of Katsuren. As his strength grew, Lord Gosamaru was moved to Nakagusuku Castle to keep Awamari in check. Awamari deceived the king in Shuri that Gosamaru was the bigger threat and got his support to defeat Gosamaru. Later, he also planned to seize control of the whole kingdom and overtake the king at Shuri, but this time the king was warned in time and Amawari was defeated. Some stories say it was Amawari's wife (the king's daughter) found out about the plot and warned her father in time. After Amawari, no powerful lords rose from Katsuren Castle.


Visit Notes

Pictures donated by Terry P.


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Gallery
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • stone walls
  • History and Cultural Museum at Amawari Park
  • History and Cultural Museum at Amawari Park
  • Model of Katsuren Castle


Castle Profile
English Name Katsuren Castle
Japanese Name 勝連城
Founder Katsuren Aji
Year Founded early 14th Century
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition Ruins only
Designations Next 100 Castles, UNESCO World Heritage Site, National Historic Site
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Features stone walls
Visitor Information
Access Bus from Naha Bus Terminal
Visitor Information
Time Required
Website http://www.wonder-okinawa.jp/002/001/e kat.html
Location Uruma, Okinawa Prefecture
Coordinates 26° 19' 49.76" N, 127° 52' 43.93" E
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Admin
Added to Jcastle 2008
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed


3.17
(6 votes)
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RaymondWHatamoto

6 months ago
Score 1++
Eric, the model of Katsuren Castle is not just visually impressive but also very informative. Around the model on three sides, just in front of where the people are standing in the photo, there are many bilingual information panels in both English and Japanese about the various aspects of the castle. The model also shows very clearly the Eastern Bailey with a moat protecting its eastern side. Unfortunately, the Eastern Bailey is off-limits to visitors. Hopefully, they will restore that bailey and the stone walls there and open it to visitors in the future.
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RaymondWHatamoto

6 months ago
Score 1++
Eric, the museum is mainly about Katsuren Castle and the history and culture of the places that make up the modern-day Uruma. I don't recall seeing much information about gusukus elsewhere in Okinawa.
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RaymondWHatamoto

6 months ago
Score 1++
I have just uploaded three photos of the Cultural and History Museum at Amawari Park, opposite Katsuren Castle. One of the photos shows a model of Katsuren Castle inside this museum.
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EricShogun

6 months ago
Score 1++
I love the model, it looks great! Glad to see this WHS get a museum and it will definitely be high on my to-do list whenever I finish all the castles on Honshu :). Does the museum contain information about other gusuku sites too?
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RaymondWHatamoto

6 months ago
Score 1++
I finally made it to this magnificent Ryukyuan castle perched on top of a 90m high hill at the end of 2021. It is a fortress with four linear baileys with each one getting progressively smaller as it leads to the main bailey at the top of the hill. One interesting feature of this castle are the curved paths of stone stairs leading from the Fourth Bailey to the Third Bailey, and again from the Second Bailey to the Main Bailey. It is designed in such a way as to expose potential attackers to long periods of defensive fire while they ascend parallel across the northern wall of the bailey overlooking the stairs. Unlike Furinkazan, I opted for the faster and more expensive taxi option from Tedako-Uranishi Station, the final station on the monorail line at the opposite end to Naha Airport. It cost 5,000yen and took around 40 minutes. By taking a taxi, it gave me enough time to re-visit two other gusukus on the same day. Across the road from Katsuren Castle is a new museum, which opened on 14th October 2021. It was free to enter until 3rd January 2022. It has a detailed model of Katsuren Castle and lots of other information about the castle and the local area’s history. I would have happily paid 1,000yen for the castle and the museum combined, but both were free when I visited on New Year’s Eve of 2021. After 3rd January, the combined castle and museum ticket costs 600yen. This castle ruin is worthy of its WHS status, one of five Ryukyuan gusukus which have earned this distinction.
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ARTShogun

72 months ago
Score 1++
I was looking at aerial pictures of these Okinawan castles. The castle walls are very bumpy and curved, following the contours of the land, much less angular than Japanese castle walls. The stone masonry was very different from on the mainland and strongly bespeaks a separate culture and architecture. Okinawa is in modern Japan so these \Gusuku"come under the purview of \""Japanese Castles\"" but I have to admit I don't know much about them. I've never been to Okinawa and it seems there are many differences to research. """
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FurinkazanHatamoto

90 months ago
Score 0++
After Nakagusukujô i went to this castle. I went to a different busstop and i was lucky when i arrived the bus came in. I got off bus #30 at Koza and went to the busstop for bus #52. This bus stops right at the foot of Katsurenjô. The name of the busstop is Katsurenjôatomae. The site is like Nakagusukujô with some subtle differences. There are signboards all over the place with english translations and QR-codes for some extra explanations. The site has free wifi. The view from the top is outstanding, but beware of the wind. After visiting the castle i went inside the building on the parking lot. It's an informationcentre and shop. Some small artifacts are on show. There is a nice model of the castle like it was in its heyday. There is also a leaflet in english. Some parts of the castle are under reconstruction. The site is free of charge. To get back to Naha it's easy. The bus#52 goes all the way to the centre of Naha. I payed 1190¥, but I got off at the kokusaidôri. This was my last castle on Okinawa. Tomorrow i'll be elsewhere.
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Frank T.Gunshi

134 months ago
Score 0++
Strictly speaking, I don't think this can be considered a \Japanese"castle site and I don't find Japanese castle ruins that interesting given the abundance of sites with actual buildings whether original or reconstructed. However these sites in Okinawa are worth a visit for the sake of understanding Okinawan history and culture. The view from the top of the ruins is good too"