Japanese Castle Explorer

by Daniel O'Grady

The Baur Collection: Japanese Sword-Fittings and Associated Metalwork Imjin War book cover

Yuzuki Castle

Images: Daniel O'Grady

Yuzuki Castle is classified as a flatland castle (its layout: Teikakushiki), and is located in Ehime Prefecture. During the pre-modern age, it found itself within the borders of Iyo Province. It is associated with the Kōno, Ogasawara clans. Dates in use: 14C - 1587.

The days of Yuzuki castle actually resembling a castle are well and truly over, it is now a very public park. Remaining are two ringed streams, formerly the moats, and also preserved are sections of earthen mounds which were once part of the castle's defences. Excavations of the site revealed the locations & dimensions of a pair or Samurai residences which have been rebuilt along with their yards & open plumbing. To be honest though, it all looks a little try hard. (Sorry Matsuyama.)

Located within short walking distance is perhaps Japan's most famous hot-spring, Dōgo Onsen. Keeping a lid on the simmering spring is a large, old building of a lot of character. This very building was where the title character of the famous novel Botchan (by Natsume Sōseki) would chilax. It is also said to have formed the basis of the fantastical bath house in the Miyazaki Hayao film, Sen to Chihiro A.K.A. Spirited away.

Google Map Views (グーグルマップ)

Best view ベストビュー
Orbit view 軌道ビュー


14C Fortifications were established by the Kōno clan.
1585 The castle fell to HToyotomi Hideyoshi's forces.
1587 The castle was decommissioned.
1602 The fortifications were dismantled & then used in the construction of Matsuyama castle.
2002 The site was designated a National Historic Site.

Historical recognition

SiteNational Historic Site