Have you ever heard Samurai era? Are you interested in? If you are into Sengoku period, there is a good place to have sightseeing!
Odawara City is situated in the south west of Kanagawa Prefecture (from central Tokyo around 1hour by fast train) and it is quite famous for Odawara Castle. Now Odawara is the hub of the transportation system, where major railways such as the JR Tokaido Shinkansen Line, the Odakyu Line, and Hakone Tozan Line all meet. The Route 1 also passes through Odawara. It is also the entrance to Fuji Hakone Izu National Park and is always busy with visitors and traffic.
Odawara initially flourished around the castle of the Hojo family, who ruled the area during the 15th century; the city further prospered during the 17th, 18th, and 19th centuries as a post town on the Tokaido Highway, which was the main transport artery that linked Edo (now known as Tokyo) and Kyoto. Odawara Joshi-koen Park (Castle Ruins Park) is well-known for cherry and plum blossoms. At the Honmaru Hiroba (square) of the castle, you can rent samurai clothes or Kimono.
Odawara Castle which was mentioned upper was as an impregnable castle owned by the fifth daimyo of the Hojo clan, the samurai family that governed Kanto area for about a century from the end of 15th century. From the Edo period, the castle became a reserve for Hakone and Tokaido and functioned as a cornerstone of defense in the Kanto region. The current castle tower was rebuilt in 1960. This three-layered, four-story castle tower has a tsuke-yagura (connecting tower) and a watari-yagura (hall turrets) on the top. A full view of Sagami Bay can be observed from the top floor.
Also food is very nice this area! Fresh seafood is brought into Odawara Harbor every day, and ‘kamaboko,’ steamed processed fish meat cleverly formed on a wooden block, is one of the representative marine products of Odawara. Other nationally famous special products of Odawara include pickled plums, paper lanterns, and lacquerware. Interesting? Please check it out!