Shurijo Castle & Kokusai Street
Local Sightseeing, All
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Approximately 4 Hours
Shurijo Castle is a UNESCO World Heritage Site. It shows strong Chinese architectural influence because Okinawa's ancient Ryukyu Kingdom was a vassal state of China. The castle is a unique mixture of Japanese and Chinese styles and 19 structures originally stood within its walls. It was the residence of the King and the seat of local government until 1879, when Okinawa was made a prefecture of Japan. The castle was obliterated during the Battle of Okinawa in 1945 but, to celebrate the 20th anniversary of the return of Okinawa to Japan, the Japanese Government rebuilt Shurijo Castle. It was opened to the public in 1992.
West of the castle stands the Shureimon Gate, which was used in times past to welcome the Chinese ambassador. It was rebuilt in 1958.
Then, enjoy a brief introduction to Naha's commercial heart with a drive along Kokusai Street. You'll pass hotels, department stores, restaurants and theaters and enjoy free time to stroll through this area that combines cosmopolitan flavor with genuine folk appeal. You will find souvenirs and other goods for sale in the local stores.
Photography is not permitted in the castle museum. Participants must negotiate steep steps and uneven surfaces. The castle is not wheel chair accessible. Not recommended for guests with limited mobility. Wear comfortable walking shoes. Shoes must be removed during the visit to main hall of Shurijo Castle. Bring local currency for purchases.