Hirosaki Castle Park
Hirosaki castle Park, located in the heart of Hirosaki, was originally a Tsugaru familiy for generations of residence, which was ruled Hirosaki clan in the Edo era(17st~19st century).
Tamenobu Tsugaru, is the Hirosaki clan founder lord, had unified in 1588. Then, Tamenobu decided to build a new castle in order to govern the Tsugaru region.
He has selected the current Hirosaki in 1603. At the time, this land was called Takaoka. Five-layer castle tower of “Takaoka-jo” was completed in 1611.
This castle that is located in the far corner of the Tohoku region was the unprecedented scale as the residence of the small feudal lords.
In 1627, the Five-layer tower of the castle was destroyed by fire caused of a lightning strike. And the next year, the castle town was renamed from “Takaoka” to “Hirosaki”.
In 1810, Hirosaki clan renovated the tower of three layers. That’s the keep of a castle in those days. In other words, this is why the tower of Hirosaki Castle remains now.
Currently, all the preserved buildings in the park have been designated as an important cultural property in Japan.
Now, Hirosaki Castle tower has been moved to the temporary tower base of the main enclosure for restoring the stone wall of the main enclosure.
Cherry Blossom Festival
Best season of Hirosaki Castle Park is the period of the Cherry Blossom Festival that is held in late April-early May every year. The park is the most famous place for cherry blossom in Japan.
There are about 50 kinds of cherries, about 2,600 cherry trees in the park. Cherry blossoms of the park are based on about 1,000 cherry trees planted by the former samurai in 1882.
In addition to “tunnel of cherry trees”, there’s the Japan’s oldest Yoshino cherry tree (1882 planting), and Japan’s largest stem circumference of the Yoshino cherry tree (about 5m15cm).
Since flowering time of cherry trees changes every year, you have to check before coming to the park.
Please note that it’s a little hard to stay hotel in Hirosaki, and the park will be filled with tourists in the period cherries are full bloom .
Autumn Foliage of Hirosaki castle park
It’s also highly recommend that autumn foliage of the park in late October-early November.
There are about a thousand Japanese maple trees in the park. The trees are lit up until 9PM at this period.
There’s also a famous ginkgo called Neagari Icho(ginkgo) at the west side of the park.
The tree is age of more than 300 years and has unique bare roots.
You can see the fabulous view of Japanese maple trees as burning . It’s worth visiting.
Snow Lantern Festival in the park
Snow Lantern Festival is held on around February 10 every year.
There are about 200 snow lanterns and snow sculptures in the park.
They are lit up until 10AM at the season.