Taira no Kiyomori ordered a retainer, Oba Kagechika, to build Ganjaku Castle on the summit of Mt. Ganjaku. It was completed in 1158. After that, the castle changed hands frequently due to war. Once Hideyoshi conquered Kyushu, Ganjaku Castle came under the control of the lord of Kokura Castle. It was dismantled in 1615 under the One Castle per Domain law. The fact that it lasted so long attests to it's strategic value as a castle. The top of the mountain offers great views of the surrounding area, fresh water can be found in the castle, and the the rocky outcroppings and cliffs form natural barriers.
The site of the castle is really a sad thing. There isn't any explanation in english and i think the tenshukaku is nothing like it was. There are only 2 armors and the rest of the building is used as a local paintings-museum. Next to the Tenshukaku is a healthcenter, built as a goten on the outside, but very modern inside.
Photos and profile by Jcastle member Furinkazan
Though not pictured here, there are several horikiri, moats, earthen embankments, a well, and parts of stone walls scattered around the mountain. The main keep is a mock castle built by the city for about 7.5 million USD. For that cost I'd like to see them put some efforts into preserving the ruins of this important castle.(Jcastle).
|English Name||Ganjaku Castle|
|Founder||Taira no Kiyomori|
|Castle Condition||Reconstructed main keep|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Main Keep Structure||concrete|
|Features||main keep, trenches, stone walls, walls|
|Access||JR Soeda Station; walk 15 mins|
|Visitor Information||Admission Fee: Free Closed: Dec.29-31|
|Time Required||40 mins|
|Location||Soeda, Fukuoka Prefecture|
|Coordinates||33° 34' 17", 130° 51' 51"|
|Year Visited||Viewer Contributed|