Visiting Time: December 22, 2014 This weekend, after the orchestra’s performance, I went on a two-day, one-night trip to Oita with my wife.
To Usuki, a castle town full of atmosphere
Even the snow in the morning seemed to have fallen only in the Yudaira Onsen area after all. When we got off the Yudaira Onsen and joined the national highway, we didn’t see any snow at all.
From here, we headed to a town called Usuki. It takes about one hour to drive. The route is via Oita city.
Park your car at the municipal parking lot and head to the Usuki Castle Site first.
The ruins of this castle were originally built on an island. The castle was built by Otomo Sorin, a famous Christian feudal lord.
歴史と文化 | うすき観光 http://www.usuki-kanko.com/?page_id=24
In the Edo period, the Inaba clan from Mino ruled the Usuki domain using this castle as their residence.
Incidentally, the castle was abandoned in the Meiji era (1868-1912) when the prefecture was abolished and the castle was torn down. This tendency must have been seen all over Japan. There is a point that it is inevitable on the policy that aims at modernization from now on, but it is a waste after all.
So, it was now a normal park.
And there was also a shrine dedicated to the clan lord Inaba.
Walking in the Castle Town of Usuki
Then, it is a castle town stroll. A stroll through the samurai residences. A slow stroll along a charming alley called Niouza.
Finally, we visited Inaba-ke Shimoyashiki, which is located right in front of the municipal parking lot. It was built in the Meiji era (1868-1912), but it is a splendid mansion that retains the samurai house style.
It was 14:00 at this point when I noticed. By the way, it was because we left late because of the snow in the morning. We wanted to have lunch in this town, but there were no shops at all. We found only one shop, but we couldn’t get in because the last order for lunch time was 1:30pm.
We’ll leave lunch until our next destination, Beppu. It’s another hour or so from here. After finding a restaurant beforehand, we decided to drive north again.