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Himeji Castle to Mt. Shosha

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Atlanta, Georgia
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300 posts
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Himeji Castle to Mt. Shosha

My teen son and I plan to make Himeji a full day trip from Kyoto so we should have plenty of time to do the castle, Koko-en gardens, museum, and Mt. Shosha.

Can anyone give me detailed directions on how to get to Mt. Shosha once we have done the castle area? Is it better to do the castle first and then Mt. Shosha or the other way around?

Thanks for any help or tips.

Nashville, TN
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for Himeji, Kobe, Osaka
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1. Re: Himeji Castle to Mt. Shosha

I strongly suggest going to Shosha first. The main reason is that it's easier to get there from the station; the bus leaves from right across the street from the station. Just ask which one (though it says, in English, Mt. Shosha). Then, on the way back, just look for the castle and push the button that tells the driver to let you off at the next stop.

The bus takes you straight to the cable car station; if you like hiking there is a trail too/from the top. I've never done it, but I've heard it's a nice trail.

Since your making a day of it, here are some other suggestions for Himeji.

Senhime Shrine - Actually I like this more for the view from the top of the hill (Otokoyama). There are a lot of steps, though (Around 200; I lost counting in my attempts to breathe); go up one side and down the other. I can detail the route if you want; it's about a ten minute walk from the station.

Himeji Zoo - Full disclosure: this zoo is pretty pathetic. I love Himeji and if I could fix one thing about the city it would be the zoo. BUT, it's cheap and easy to get to. Plus you can go through the zoo and exit near the museums.

Museums - Himeji has two museums that are worth going to: the Museum of Art and the Museum of History. Are they world class? Probably not. But again, you're there, and they're close. If you face the castle. they are on the right side, towards the rear. And they're cheap: adults are 200 yen (students are less).

Tegarayama - This is probably a bit of a stretch; it's nowhere near the castle and the only toursists I've ever seen there were locals who always wondered what was on that big hill. Well, there's a castle-like structure (looks Eastern European; a reconstruction, of course) that is fun to climb around on (depends a lot on your son). There's an aquarium that is really cheap (200 yen). It's a quirky travel site; the aquarium, like the zoo, is small, though not nearly so pathetic. And the views are really nice. The downside: it's hard to get there. A taxi from the South side of the station is easiest. Cheapest is to take the Sanyo train to Tegara station and walk; you'll know where you're going because you'll see these spires of to the West on top of a hill. You could also rent a bicycle and ride there; there's free bicycle rental on the south side of the station. There are signs, but you can ask the JR attendant for more information.

These links should help:

http://www.himeji-kanko.jp/en/index.html

…blogspot.com/2006_07_01_archive.html

I truly enjoy Himeji; it's a small city, but it perfectly illustrates that a small city in Japan feels very much like a big city in the US. Enjoy!

John W.

Atlanta, Georgia
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300 posts
9 reviews
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2. Re: Himeji Castle to Mt. Shosha

Thanks so much for all the details!

I don't want to overplan the day but it's nice to have some additional "to-do" items if time permits.

I read in another post that the History Museum has a presentation on Samurai armor at various times during the day......sometimes volunteers even get to dress up. Is it possible to find out what those times might be? (My son would be very interested!)

Ontario
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3. Re: Himeji Castle to Mt. Shosha

One of our most memorable experiences in Japan involved returning from Mt Shosha to Himeji. We met a mother and daughter at Enkyoji who reminded us about the time of the last cable-car (aka "ropeway") departure in the day. Late in the afternoon we were the sole remaining visitors at the temple. We caught the cable-car all right, but when we reached the bottom mother and daughter were waiting with their car to make sure we had indeed made it. They had taken an earlier cable-car, and must have been worried about us. Then they insisted on driving us back to the station. Such concern and kindness!

4. Re: Himeji Castle to Mt. Shosha

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