The reconstructed Sumoto Castle at the center of Awaji Island is a significant historical site in Sumoto City, located on the east coast of Awaji Island. This city, the largest on the island, has a rich history and is home to several historic sites that date back to pre-modern japan. Among these sites, Sumoto Castle stands out as a prominent landmark.
To reach Sumoto Castle, the best mode of transportation is by car. However, there is also a bus service available from Kobe City on mainland Honshu to Sumoto City. Additionally, Sumoto City operates an electric bicycle rental scheme, allowing visitors to explore the island more thoroughly.
Sumoto Castle is situated on Mt. Mikuma and has a history that spans several centuries. It was constructed in 1526 by the head of the Kumano Suigun marine troops. Throughout various regime changes, the castle maintained its strategic importance. Although it was abandoned in 1642, the castle town continued to thrive.
Even though the castle itself no longer exists, visitors can still find remnants of the castle period on Mt. Mikuma, including stone walls and other relics. In 1928, a mock keep was built, offering panoramic views of Sumoto City, Awaji Island, and the Seto Inland Sea.
At the foot of the castle, the remains of the Inada family residence can be found. The Inada family once governed the area, and nearby are several merchant houses dating back to the Edo period (1603-1867). Another notable site is the Sumoto Hachiman Shrine, which is said to have been founded over 1,000 years ago. The castle town atmosphere has been well-preserved, allowing visitors to experience the historical charm of the area.
Sumoto City is not only known for its historical significance but also for its natural beauty. The city is surrounded by stunning landscapes, including mountains, forests, and the sea. Awaji Island itself is renowned for its scenic views and is often referred to as the “Island of Flowers.” Visitors can enjoy various outdoor activities such as hiking, cycling, and fishing.
Furthermore, Sumoto City hosts several events and festivals throughout the year, attracting both locals and tourists. One of the most popular events is the Sumoto City Summer Festival, held in August. During this festival, the streets come alive with traditional performances, food stalls, and fireworks displays.
In addition to its historical and natural attractions, Sumoto City boasts a vibrant culinary scene. The city is known for its fresh seafood, especially its famous Awaji Island onions. Visitors can indulge in a wide range of local delicacies, including sushi, sashimi, tempura, and traditional Japanese sweets.
For those looking to immerse themselves in the local culture, Sumoto City offers various cultural experiences and workshops. Visitors can learn traditional crafts such as pottery and weaving or participate in tea ceremonies and calligraphy classes. These activities provide a unique opportunity to learn about Japanese culture firsthand.
Sumoto City is also an ideal base for exploring the surrounding region. Located between mainland Honshu and Shikoku, the city serves as a gateway to both regions. From Sumoto City, visitors can easily access other popular destinations such as Kobe, Osaka, and Kyoto on mainland Honshu, as well as Takamatsu and Matsuyama on Shikoku.
In conclusion, Sumoto City and its reconstructed Sumoto Castle offer a glimpse into Japan’s rich history and cultural heritage. The castle’s strategic location and the remnants of its past reflect the importance of Awaji Island as a connecting point between mainland Honshu and Shikoku. Visitors can explore the historical sites, enjoy the natural beauty of the island, indulge in local cuisine, and experience traditional Japanese culture. Sumoto City is a must-visit destination for those seeking a unique and authentic Japanese experience.
Address And Maps Location:
1272-2 Orodani, Sumoto-shi, Hyogo-ken