Osaka Castle is located about 4 km southeast of
Umeda and about 4 km northeast of Nanba.
It is one of the famous castles in Japan, along with Nagoya, Himeji and Kumamoto Castles.
It was built first in 1585 by Hideyoshi Toyotomi, who dominated the
whole Japan as a warlord.
It is said that the castle was very gorgeous.
But after the death of Hideyoshi in 1599, Toyotomi family was overthrown in 1615 by Ieyasu Tokugawa, the founder of Edo government and the 1st Shogun.
At that time, the castle was set on fire, and was be burned to the ground.
After that, Hidetada Tokugawa, the 2nd Shogun of Edo
government and a
son of Ieyasu, rebuilt the castle in 1629.
And Osaka Castle had been a government-ruled castle.
The castle tower was destroyed by fire by a stroke of lightning in 1665, but it hadn't been rebuilt.
In 1868 at the end of Edo period, Yoshinobu Tokugawa, the last 15th
Shogun, was living in this castle.
He run away to Edo before the troops to found new government came, but this castle was destroyed again by the attack by the troops.
This led to the beginning to new Meiji Period.
In 1928, Osaka mayor make a proposal to restorr Osaka Castle.
And Osaka citizens raised money for the castle, and it was restored in 1931.
In World War II, many buildings in this site were destroyed by air raids, but the castle tower remained fortunately.
In the site, there are several old gates and buildings including the
castle tower. They are designated as national important cultural
And many stone walls remain and the site is surrounded with wide moats.
The site is about 1 km from north to south and from east to west.
Around the site of castle, the parks are set up and some public
facilities are in the park.
The park including Osaka Castle is called "Osakajo-koen" (Osaka castle Park).