Akita: Senshu Park
After visiting one of the most devastated regions of Tohoku (due to the tsunami and earthquake of March 2011) I moved on to Akita Prefecture.
My first stop was Akita City before leaving to visit Kakunodate on the same day.
This post will feature my morning in Akita City in the Senshu Park.
The park is not too far away from the Akita JR station. You’ll come along a shopping district on your way. It’s possible to walk there in a few minutes (~10 min.).
Exploring Senshu Park in Akita
Senshu Park (千秋公園) means literally “thousand years park” is quite spacious and also features a few shrines and a castle!
Entrance to the park itself is free of charge.
On the right photo you can see that it says “Kubota Castle Ruins” (久保田城跡).
That’s why the park is surrounded by a typical castle moat.
You’ll access the main part of the park through the “Front Gate of Kubota Castle” (久保田城表門).
This wooden, two-story turret gate with tiled roof stood at the front gate protecting Kubota Castle.
From the front gate you have to walk through the whole park to get to the actual castle.
There are many other things to see such as beautiful ponds and shrines which I will show you later.
Being the castle lover I am, I wanted to go to the castle first, though.
Kubota Castle’s Osumi-yagura Turret (久保田城御隅櫓) served as both, a lookout and a weapons depot.
Kubota Castle was the home of the Satake family which ruled Akita. There used to be eight “Osumi-yagura” towers in the age of lord Satake.
In 1989 one of the towers was restored by the city on the occasion of the 100th anniversary of municipalization.
Inside the castle there is some historical material exhibited.
There’s also a miniature of the former castle area. Very interesting!
The top floor offers a nice panoramic view of the whole city.
As many castles this one is also located on a small hill.
I like those castles (“hill castles”) the best because I always enjoy the view I get from the top floor.
You’ll also have a nice view of the park from above where everything was covered with cherry blossom petals at that time!
There was a small waterfall right next to the castle.
You could also see it from above.
Cherry blossom petals everywhere!
Don’t you just want to lie down there or have a picnic?
As mentioned before there are also a few shrines in the park.
These pictures were taken at the Hachiman Shrine (八幡秋田神社).
Besides the normal omikuji they also had seasonal cherry blossom omikuji.
There was also an ema cherry blossom version. It says 合格 (goukaku) which means that students are praying to pass their exams.
There are a lot of waterways and ponds in the park. Of course all of them were filled with petals.
It was like walking through a pink dreamland!
This was by far the most beautiful pond I’ve ever seen! FULL of cherry blossom petals!
I wanted to jump into it, but I guess after that I would have looked like a pink mummy covered in petals. *g*
There were so many things to discover like this little cherry blossom petal boat! Isn’t it cute?
Koi + cherry blossoms = nice color mix!
Even the ducks enjoyed the cherry blossom bath! ^-^
… but then decided to leave after all! *g*
And then it was time to leave the park and Akita City to go to my next destination of the day: Kakunodate
Kakunodate is very popular during cherry blossom season and you’ll soon see why.
Stay tuned for more!
Thanks for reading.
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Events in Jan/Feb 2017:
- Jan 15: Matobakai (Kumamoto)
- Jan 15: Toh-shiya (Kyoto)
- Jan 17: Bonden-sai (Akita)
- Jan 28: Yamayaki (Nara)
- Feb 3: Setsubun (nationwide)
- Feb 3-12: Otaru Yuki Akari no Michi
- Feb 6-12: Sapporo Snow Festival
- Feb 7-12: Asahikawa Winter Festival
- Feb 15-16: Yokote Kamakura Festival
- Feb 17-19: Tokamachi Snow Festival
- Feb 18: Naked Festival at Saidai-ji (Okayama)