The Hatakeyama built up and fortified Nanao Castle so that in its prime it was one of the 5 strongest mountaintop castles in Japan. Eventually the castle fell to Uesugi Shingen in 1577 after a long protracted battle. This battle escalated the fighting between Oda Nobunaga and Uesugi. After the Uesugi were defeated and Maeda Toshiie took control of this area he built a new castle in Nanao city, but instead of making use of the ruins of this Nanao Castle he built one at Komaruyama, closer to the city center. Recent excavations show that Nanao castle was even larger than previously believed and they are considering expanding the historical site.
A very nice mountaintop ruin, signs and walking trails display all the major locations. You can easily see all the main structures of the castle and many stone walls remain. It's best to take a taxi and ask them to pick you up again in an hour or 2. There is a nice view from the Honmaru (central bailey) at the top so pack a lunch and enjoy the outdoors.
|English Name||Nanao Castle|
|Year Founded||1428/29 (?)|
|Castle Condition||Ruins only|
|Designations||Top 100 Castles, Top 100 Mountaintop Castles, National Historic Site|
|Historical Period||Pre Edo Period|
|Access||Nanao Sta, Nanao Line; 5km (take a taxi)|
|Location||Nanao, Ishikawa Prefecture|
|Coordinates||37° 0' 31", 136° 59' 2"|
|Visits||June 12, 2006|