Fukuchiyama Castle

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Fukuchiyama49.jpg

History

Akechi Mitsuhide built Fukuchiyama Castle under the orders of Oda Nobunaga to pacify the Tanba area. Mitsuhide established the castle town and also improved flood control of the Yura River. The "Akechi Yabu" a strip of land covered in trees along the Yura River was a flood break near the castle and is one such remnant of these works. It is often pointed out to demonstrate Mistuhide's interest not just in pacifying the lands but build up the castle town and infrastructure, making the region successful.

After the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600 Arima Toyouji became lord of the castle. He expanded and fortified the castle into the Fukuchiyama Castle we see today. Lordship of the castle changed hands a number of times until Kutsuki Tanemaki became lord of the castle in 1669. From then until the Meiji Restoration, 13 generations of the Kutsuki family ruled over Fukuchiyama.


Visit Notes

Fukuchiyama Castle is a bit out of the way from Kyoto but it can also be a fantastic day trip for castle fans. The castle itself is well worth the trip, but you can also cycle around the town to visit several temples with gates repurposed from the original castle or cross the river to visit Izaki Castle. Rent a bicycle at the Tourist Information Center just outside the train station.

The fascinating stone walls have many stones that were repurposed from graves and temples. Try to see how many you can identify in the walls and use the photos below to practice!

There is an art museum at the entrance to the castle that is made to roughly look like a Yagura, but it actually has nothing to do with the castle and is not a faithful mock structure of any kind. But, it is photogenic and provides some additional atmosphere for the castle.

Original Profile by RaymondW (2009) updated by Eric (2022)


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Gallery
  • Akaganemon Guard House - one of the rare extant guard houses
  • Akaganemon Guard House
  • Tsurigane Gate
  • Tsurigane Gate
  • Akechi Yabu
  • Akechi Yabu
  • Map of relocated gates
  • Relocated gate at Shosenji
  • Relocated gate at Shosenji
  • Relocated gate at Shosenji
  • Relocated gate at Shosenji
  • Relocated gate at Myokakuji
  • Relocated gate at Myokakuji
  • Relocated gate at Hojuji
  • Relocated gate at Hojuji
  • Relocated gate at Shoganji
  • Relocated gate at Shoganji
  • Relocated gate at Shoganji


Castle Profile
English Name Fukuchiyama Castle
Japanese Name 福知山城
Founder Akechi Mitsuhide
Year Founded 1579
Castle Type Hilltop
Castle Condition Reconstructed main keep
Designations Next 100 Castles, Local Historic Site
Historical Period Edo Period
Main Keep Structure 3 levels, 4 floors
Year Reconstructed 1985 (concrete)
Artifacts Original guard house moved to the Honmaru in 1985
Features main keep, gates, turrets, stone walls, walls
Visitor Information
Access Fukuchiyama Sta (Fukuchiyama Line); 15 min walk
Visitor Information Open 9am-5pm; closed Tuesday except Holidays when the following day is closed; closed Dec.28-Jan.6; 330 yen admission
Time Required 90 mins
Website https://www.fukuchiyamacastle.jp
Location Fukuchiyama, Kyoto
Coordinates 35° 17' 48.48" N, 135° 7' 46.27" E
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Admin
Added to Jcastle 2009
Contributor RaymondW
Admin Year Visited Viewer Contributed, 2021
Admin Visits November 5, 2021
Friends of JCastle
Malcolm Fairman Photography - Fukuchiyama Castle
Kojodan: Fukuchiyama-jo
Shirobito: Fukuchiyama-jo
Shiro Meguri Fan: Fukuchiyama-jo
Ken's Castle Storage: Fukuchiyama-jo


3.33
(15 votes)
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ARTShogun

9 months ago
Score 1++
oh, that museum is one for Mogi Monday then : 3
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ARTShogun

56 months ago
Score 1++
I got a nice panoramic view of this castle by climbing the hill behind the city hall, hokimaru park.
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DiegoDeManilaAshigaru

69 months ago
Score 0++
Visited 13 Nov 2016. A concrete castle, but a quite good-looking reconstruction nonetheless. Great views of the surrounding area. As described in a previous comment, there's a good number of ten’yōseki embedded in the tenshu base - possibly the densest concentration I've seen thus far. The Satō Taisei Memorial Art Museum at the foot of the hill was designed to look like a turret, and complements the castle quite nicely. https://with...vember-2016/
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SuupaahiirooAshigaru

72 months ago
Score 0++
The highlight here are the ten'yōseki (転用石) in the ishigaki. Ten'yōseki are stones that had some other function (stone Buddhist pagodas; millstones; lanterns) before they ended up in the stone castle wall. The oldest of these ten'yōseki bears an inscription from the year 1359. Apart from these man-made objects, only natural stones were used for the ishigaki; in others words, no stones were cut specifically for the wall.
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RaymondWHatamoto

137 months ago
Score 0++
I finally made it inside this castle. My first visit here, a couple of years ago, was on a day when it was closed. Visitors beware. This castle is closed on Tuesdays or if the Tuesday is a public holiday, it will open and then close on the following day. The staff was pretty stoked when they found that a foreigner came all the way up to northern Kyoto to visit their reconstructed castle. This is quite a nice castle to visit with an okay museum. Of course, a working knowledge of Japanese is a must if you want to understand the displays. No photography is allowed inside the museum except for one small tatami room where you may put on the fake samurai helmets there. There were three helmets when I went. Entry into the castle museum cost 210yen.
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FurinkazanHatamoto

147 months ago
Score 0++
Today i visited this castle.It's a really nice reconstruction. The interior is a modern one with little artifacts on show, but with a very nice lookout. If you come/go from/to Kyoto, prepare to take a picture on the train. You will pass not that far from the castle and it's the unique chance to take a nice picture from afar. I discovered it too late and tried to make a photo on the train to Osaka. Sadly this line is further away from the castle.