Take a trip to the town overlooked by Odawara Castle | Japan Highlights Travel, for sightseeing around Tokaido

Odawara City is a proud castle town, a major post town on the Tokaido, and with its lively Odawara Fishing Port, it is a modern fishing town, so to speak.
Why not visit Odawara and discover its countless charms?
The symbol of the city, Odawara Castle, had a major renovation completed in May 2016, and is now open to the public.
Your trip around Odawara starts from this shining white castle tower!

Odawara Castle won fame as an "impregnable great castle" during the Sengoku period. With the outer walls repainted during the major renovation, it now shines even more brightly as the symbol of the city. Lift up your head during a walk in the town, and enjoy the fine aspect of the castle from different angles.

  • Feeling like a feudal lord,looking out over the castle town facing Sagami Bay ... Where will you go next?
  • The major renovation of Odawara Castle, which the Odawara residents watched over
Follow the route through the exhibition
and discover the history of each period.
The seismic resistance of the inside of the castle has been improved and all aspects of the displays have been renewed. While following the route and learning from the information panels about the background to the different periods, you can appreciate displays related to the former lords of the castle - the five generations of Odawara Hojo - and other items related to Odawara Castle. What's more, a stylish atmosphere has been created through the use of interior design features such as color themes for each period. The top floor is the top highlight with its observation deck and installation space for a statue of Marici, which was recreated by Odawara craftsman using timber from Odawara. You can have fun learning about Odawara while immersing yourself in the atmospheres of the different periods.

Inside Odawara Castle after the major renovation

  • Odawara Castle regularly features in period dramas as the setting for the exploits of Sengoku samurai. At that time, the Hojo clan was the reigning power. Five generations of clan leaders left behind numerous achievements over the roughly 100 years starting when Hojo Soun moved into the castle with his vision for the ideal country. While they steadily grew in strength and came to dominate the Kanto region, they recruited many people to start building the castle town. They also developed politics, culture and industries and established the foundation of today's Odawara.
  • Another major reason Odawara Castle draws attention is that it was the "impregnable great castle" which repelled even Uesugi Kenshin and Takeda Shingen, among others. Known as the largest and strongest castle in the Kanto region, it is characterized by its "sogamae" enclosure which runs as long as 9 kilometers. This huge structure enveloped the town to provide protection, and remnants of it can still be seen around the town. Odawara Castle was a castle of interest to many famous Sengoku warriors, and its unfading charm attracts huge numbers of visitors even to this day. A journey envisaging the world of the Sengoku period is really quite a dramatic and wonderful thing.

updated on Dec 14, 2017