Futamata Castle

From Jcastle.info



It is esimated that Futamata Castle was built in the early to mid 1500s by the Imagawa. It was ruked by the Futamata and Matsui as retainers for the IMagawa until it was taken over by Tokugawa in 1568. Futamata Castle was one of the main defenses for Hamamatsu Castle, the home castle of Tokugawa Ieyasu. In 1572 the castle was taken over by Takeda Katsuyori, but it was retaken by Ieyasu again in 1575. Like Suwahara Castle, this was retaken as Tokugawa used the momentum from his win at Nagashino to take back many lands that were taken by the Takeda.

In 1579, Ieyasus eldest son Nobuyasu was ordered to commit seppuku by Ieyasu (as per the wishes of Oda Nobunaga). Nobuyasu and his wife Tukiyama were accused of conspiring with the Takeda. Tsukiyama, one of Nobunaga's daighters, was also executed here.

The castle was abandoned when Tokugawa moved to Kanto.

Visit Notes

Convenient stop between Kakegawa and Hamamatsu. Beautiful scenery along the river, minimal ishigaki and an interesting history. They have a loud-speaker that plays the story of the castle on repeat to dramatic music.

History by Kris; photos by Kris and RaymondW


Castle Profile
English Name Futamata Castle
Japanese Name 二俣城
Alternate Names Nihara-jo
Founder Imagawa Clan
Year Founded around 1520
Castle Type Mountaintop
Castle Condition Ruins only
Designations National Historic Site
Historical Period Pre Edo Period
Features trenches, stone walls
Visitor Information
Access Futamatahonmachi Sta. (Tenryuhamanako Line); 10 min walk
Visitor Information
Time Required
Location Hamamatsu, Shizuoka Prefecture
Coordinates 34° 51' 44", 137° 48' 34"
Loading map...
Year Visited Viewer Contributed
Visits Viewer Donated
Added to Jcastle 2010

(5 votes)
Add your comment
Jcastle.info welcomes all comments. If you do not want to be anonymous, register or log in. It is free.



3 months ago
Score 0++

While there are much more interesting castle sites in the vicinity (Kakegawa Castle being a personal favourite), Futamata Castle is still worth a quick trip and easily combined with Tobayama Castle.

Especially the tenshudai (stone base where the main keep once stood) is nicely preserved, but sadly there are no views of the river from it. In general I was a bit disappointed: the location of Futamata Castle, near the river, is quite dramatic, but you do not get a good glimpse of it from the castle itself. From Tobayama Castle there is a nice viewing platform, though. The ruins of the main gate are also worth a look.

Another historical place near these two castles is an Edo Period ton'ya. Sadly it was closed when I was there (only opened on weekends and national holidays), but I think it might be worth a visit. Google 筏問屋田代家 for more information.


21 months ago
Score 0++
In addition to the tenshukakudai the otemon ruin had nice ishigaki. A chopped tree growing out of that ishigaki looked like an octopus climbing the wall. Between Futamata and Tobayama where the river use to run is now a quaint residential village where you can see the respective mountains of Futamata castle to the left and Tobayama castle to the right with the river to your back.


85 months ago
Score 0++
Small, not much to see besides the tenshu dai but it's interesting


87 months ago
Score 0++
It takes around 50 minutes from Kakegawa Station to Futamata Honmachi Station on a one-carriage train on a little local non-JR train line. The castle ruin is around a 10 minute walk from the train station. Only three of the baileys, Honmaru (Main Bailey), Ninomaru (Second Bailey), and Kita Kuruwa (Northern Bailey) are easily accessible, signposted, and well-kept. Around the Honmaru and Ninomaru, ishigaki (stone walls) remain as well as the stone base of the castle keep. The Kurayashiki Bailey, can clearly be seen across the dry moat from the Ninomaru, but I decided not to venture inside as it was seriously overgrown, and there were signs up warning about the presence of poisonous snakes. By not going into the Kurayashiki Bailey, I also missed the Minami Kuruwa (Southern Bailey) linked to and located below the Kurayashiki Bailey. Some of the smaller baileys located west and below the Honmaru can clearly be seen on the path down to the Tenryu River, but these small baileys are overgrown with bamboo. One of these western baileys was so overgrown that I could not make it out. Several dry moats around the castle ruin can also be clearly seen. Surprisingly, some of the maple trees still have plenty of red leaves on them in late December. My girlfriend and I were the only ones there during the whole 45 minutes or so that we spent wandering around this castle ruin. For me, this is a 1.5 star site in autumn with the colourful red leaves and for being undiscovered by tourists.


100 months ago
Score 0++

The best part about Futamata joshi is the area around it. The Tenryu-gawa is beautiful and the forested green hills are undeveloped; it really helped give me an idea of what the view from lots of castles would have been like back in the day. (Different from all those other views that encompass urban sprawl, at least). I accidentally got off at the wrong stop and decided to walk back – the one-man Tenryu train line doesn't come too often - the views from the bridge were nice too. The ruins of Toba castle on the adjacent hill are more extensive and have been turned into a park with a great view of the river; there is a super happy fun slide for children from the honmaru to the ni-no-maru.

The river itself played an important part in the 1572 Siege of Futamata. The castle was located on a cliff and the defenders relied on an intricate series of buckets to supply the castle with water. The Takeda forces sent large rafts down the river to crash into the tower, which weakened and collapsed, depriving the Tokugawa forces of water and leading to a prompt Takeda victory.