Himeji - Japanspecialist
Himeji has about 500,000 inhabitants and known for its beautiful white castle. It is easy to get to by bullet train and is located between Hiroshima (about 70 min.) and Kyoto (about 60 min.).
Himeji Castle - a 400-year-old beauty
Himeji’s old samurai fortress is over 400 years old and became known worldwide as the castle featured in the TV series Shogun. The UNESCO-protected castle has survived wars and natural disasters and is considered Japan's most beautiful original castle. It is also called the "White Heron Castle", as the elegant white structure is supposed to represent a flying heron. The castle reopened in 2015 after being closed for restoration for six years and is a very popular attraction. We recommend visiting the castle as early as possible in the morning to avoid queuing and to see the whole area. Next to the castle are Kokoen gardens, nine different gardens in the traditional Edo style. One of the attractions here is a tea house where you can participate in a traditional tea ceremony and watch the special green tea being carefully prepared with minutely prescribed movements.
Other attractions in Himeji
Mount Shosha can be reached from Himeji city centre by bus and ropeway (about 30 minutes). The mountain is home to the 1000-year-old temple complex Engyoji with the beautiful wooden temples Mitsunodo and Maniden. You do to walk a bit to see it all, but it's worth the trouble! Many films have been filmed here, including the Hollywood movie The Last Samurai.