Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto And its Connection to Oda Nobunaga

Kyoto has a lot of famous sights, mainly temples and shrines, but sometimes you just want to get away from that and see something else.
But where to go? From Kyoto your day trip options are endless.
As part of a day trip itinerary you could visit Shoryuji Castle which I’ll introduce today.

Visited: April 5th 2013

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

Access to Shoryuji Castle

Shoryuji Castle (勝竜寺城) is located in Nagaokakyo City, Kyoto Prefecture.

The castle can be easily accessed from JR Nagaokakyo Station (~10 mins, 220 yen from Kyoto Station). The castle is a 10-min walk from the east exit of the station.


Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

Best Time to Visit Shoryuji Castle

I’ve only been there once, but judging by how beautiful the cherry blossoms were, I’d say early April is probably the most beautiful time to visit the castle.

Did you notice how lovely the fallen petals look in the castle moat?

There’s a great yearly festival called “Garasha Matsuri” in early November, so I suppose that’s also a good time to go.


Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

Shoryuji Castle’s History

Shoryuji Castle was built by Hosokawa Yoriharu in 1339.

The castle mainly served as stronghold to defend Kyoto, capital at that time.
During the Onin War, it became occupied by Iwanari Tomomichi and the western alliance. Oda Nobunaga conquered the castle in 1568, and handed it to Hosokawa Tadaoki, who fortified the castle and built a double moat around it. He occupied the castle until 1579.

About one week after Nobunaga’s death in 1582, Shoryuji Castle was used as a base by Akechi Mitsuhide in the Battle of Yamazaki.

In 1633, Lord Nagai Naokiyo wanted to reconstruct the castle that was in a poor condition at that time. But he had to leave the castle in 1649 and after that nobody took care of it anymore.

(Sources: Wikipedia, JCastle.Info)

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

Shoryuji Castle – Facilities

The main building consists of 2 floors. Admission is free.

In the first floor you’ll find a rest area, vending machines and a toilet. In the second floor are some related exhibitions.

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

You’ll even find a detailed miniature model of the castle.

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

There’s also a map (view from the south side) of the castle.

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

Inside of the castle grounds is a small park.

In the photo above you see the statues of Tadaoki Hosokawa and Garasha Hosokawa. The latter was the daughter of a samurai and a Christian convert. Her father, Akechi Mitsuhide, was actually responsible for Nobunaga’s death. Rumors say that Garasha was canonized as a saint in 1862 by the Vatican. (*source: Wikipedia)

The “Garasha Festival” I mentioned earlier is held for her.

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

The park is small, but offers a quiet and lovely atmosphere for hanging out, having a picnic and enjoying Japanese history.

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

In spring it is especially beautiful as you can see in the photos.

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

In the photo above you see the “sumi turret” (sumi yagura, 隅櫓).

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

View of the castle and the moat from a higher elevation.

Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto Shoryuji Castle in Kyoto

If you happen to be in Kyoto with some extra time on your hands, then this is a nice way to get out for just an hour or so.


Tourist Information:
Opening Hours:
9:00-18:00 (Apr – Oct); 9:00-17:00 (Nov – Mar)
Tuesdays, December 28th – January 4th
Entrance fee:
Time required:
10-20 mins
Take a train from JR Kyoto Station to JR Nagaokakyo Station. Take the east exist and walk for about 10 minutes.
Please note: Prices as well as opening hours / holidays are subject to change. Please make sure to follow the provided link to the official website to check out the latest updates.


And that’s it. I hope you enjoyed this blog post.
Please let me know in the comments below if you’d consider visiting or if you’ve already been there.


  • That’s some really incredible Cherry Blossoms and it somehow looks familiar. I wonder if Mangakas use it as reference in a lot of manga or Anime because it seems like I have seen that pathway with the trees lining it in several scenes, or maybe it was even in one of the Dramas I’ve watched…. Déjà vu. That whole Castle has a really calming look to it and its hard to imagine any combat in that beautiful pastoral setting. Great pics again! :D

    • Beautiful indeed. I really enjoyed it and relaxed in the park.
      I doubt that it’s specifically this one because in spring you’ll see a similar scenery almost everywhere. ;)

  • I can’t believe how old these Japanese castles are! Man, 1339!!!
    Another great photo reportage, Jasmine! Love to read the history facts in your photo posts.

  • Another sight in Kyoto? Hahaha this city never ceases to amaze me.. :)
    Makes me think of going there again even though I’ve been there twice :teary:

    • Yes, there’s so much to see indeed. ^___^

      Just be careful not to get things confused. This is not in Kyoto City, but in Kyoto Prefecture.
      It’s in Nagaokakyo City which is very close to Kyoto City, though. :D

  • Oh I see.. I thought it’s inside Kyoto city, because I never heard of it before! Oh well, it’ll be a while before I can go to Japan again though, so this could go to the list for now :)

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