Himeji Castle

As promised, here's the second part of my Himeji Trip, you can read about the first part here.

Going to the castle, you can either use the street right outside Himeji station or walk through the shotengai if you feel like window shopping before reaching the castle. I didn't regret not choosing to ride the bus (around ¥100-200) as the 15-20 mins walk is really normal for me. I walk 15 mins from our station to our house everyday! Haha


Japanese and their art. There are many sculptures around the area. Oh, how I love Himeji! 


The entrance to Himeji Castle grounds.


I was freaking out! I can't believe I made it. I am here. I was here. Alone. I did it! But I'm just starting yet.

You know you're entering Japan's finest and a UNESCO world heritage site when there's an automated ticketing machine, kidding. I was giddy-like-a-kid to use the machine because this is apparently my first time. Among the Japanese castles I visited, Himeji Castle was the only castle with a ticketing machine.


Ticket (adult) costs ¥1,000. Luckily, no lines at the ticketing area. I heard it takes forever to get in when it's Cherry blossom season and Golden Week.


I visited Himeji right after the Golden Week, the longest and busiest week-long holiday in Japan. The plan was to go here during the Sakura's peak season last March-April but my pollen allergy, which is prevalent in Japan during Spring, easily got the best of me. I usually get sick during the start of Spring season.

My favorite part: you have to bow down your head to enter. I'm pretty small so this was a piece of cake!


Here, I was taking photos from the castle's second floor. Most of Himeji Castle's windows while mostly open, have this protective strings on them though. Pardon my window shots with string silhouette.

Third floor


Look at that roof. That view. 


Most of the area though well-lit, the source of light is usually just the sunlight straight from the windows. Overall, it was still dark for the camera to process. Thus, I didn't really take much photos while inside and if ever I did, most of them just turned out blurry! Haha

Hilltop


Taken while I was on the hilltop

Taken down the hilltop


The Shachis

While the Japanese are familiar with Gregorian Calendar, yes. Most of them do not follow the Gregorian Calendar's year. Instead, the Japanese years are based on eras. For example, today we're in Heisei era. Heisei starts from 1988. So 2017 - 1988 = 29. (As of writing) Today is May 11, Heisei 29.

The Shachi of the Heisei period


Goodbye Himeji Castle! It's time to shop for souvenirs.



In front of the castle grounds is a rest area where you can find souvenir stores, restaurants and comfort rooms.

Himeji Castle Loop Bus

If you've been traveling in Japan, you've probably run into different mascots quite often. Most character mascots represent a specific prefecture (state/province) and sometimes companies in Japan. Two of the best examples are Kumamon and Domokun, which are not only known locally but also worldwide. Kumamon is from Kumamoto Prefecture while Domokun represents NHK, Japan's national broadcasting company.

Meet Shiromaruhime! Himeji's character mascot.


Souvenir Himeji magnet and warrior biscuits



While walking back to Himeji station, I passed by Satchan's House.




Satchan is another popular character mascot of a food company in Himeji


Somebody needs to buy a selfie pod, I swear. Haha! Luckily, there was a huge mirror perfect for ~*selca*~

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