Katsuren Castle 勝連城
stone walls
Picture Donated by Terry P.
Founder Katsuren Aji
Year early 14th Century
Type Mountaintop
Condition Ruins
Admin's Rating ★ ★ ★ ☆ ☆
Historical Site National Historic Site
Historical Value UNESCO World Heritage Site
Location Uruma, Okinawa Pref.
Map Google Map
Access Bus from Naha Bus Terminal
Website Gusuku Sites - Katsuren
Notes Pictures donated by Terry P.
History The 10th lord of the castle, Amawari Aji, is the last and most well known lord of Katsuren Castle. He is famous for fostering prosperous international trade and many shards of Chinese pottery and tiles were found on the site of Katsuren Castle. He was also a cunning and deceiving lord. It is said that he pushed the 9th lord Mochizuki Aji off the top of the walls when he tricked Mochizuki to come up there one night and thus assumed lordship of the castle. Mochizuki was considered to be a tyrant so Amawari was a savior to the people of Katsuren. As his strength grew, Lord Gosamaru was moved to Nakagusuku Castle to keep Awamari in check. Awamari deceived the king in Shuri that Gosamaru was the bigger threat and got his support to defeat Gosamaru. Later, he also planned to seize control of the whole kingdom and overtake the king at Shuri, but this time the king was warned in time and Amawari was defeated. Some stories say it was Amawari's wife (the king's daughter) found out about the plot and warned her father in time. After Amawari, no powerful lords rose from Katsuren Castle.

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  • Okinawa Budo Kai    May 06, 2012 at 11:20 AM
    One should see the play of Amawari and Gosamaru to understand this Site.
  • Frank T. on My Page    September 21, 2011 at 11:56 AM
    Strictly speaking, I don't think this can be considered a "Japanese" castle site, and I don't find Japanese castle ruins that interesting given the abundance of sites with actual buildings, whether original or reconstructed. However, these sites in Okinawa are worth a visit for the sake of understanding Okinawan history and culture. The view from the top of the ruins is good, too.
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Uruma, Okinawa Pref.
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