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Osaka Castle (大坂城・大阪城, Ōsaka-jō) is a Japanese castle in Chūō-ku, Osaka, Japan. Originally called Ozakajo, it is one of Japan's most famous castles, and played a major role in the unification of Japan during the sixteenth century of the Azuchi-Momoyama period.

The castle is situated on a plot of land roughly one kilometer square. It is built on two raised platforms of landfill supported by sheer walls of cut rock, each overlooking a moat. The central castle building is five stories on the outside and eight stories on the inside, and built atop a tall stone foundation to protect its occupants from sword-bearing attackers.

Osaka Castle from the outside of the castle walls.

One of the large gates.

Look at the size of this gate ... there is little bitty Ashley.

Osaka's main tower through another one of the gates.

The description of ...

one huge rock!

Either a demonstration or practice or something but kids and adults simulating swordplay in front of Osaka Castle.

A little something about Hideyoshi Toyotomi, original builder of Osaka-jo.

A miniature display of the Summer War of Osaka in 1615.

The description of the very detailed folding screen of the Summer War of Osaka.

Look at the detail!

These are full size replicas of the Tiger and Dolphins adorning the outside of Osaka-jo.

Gokurakubashi (Paradise Bridge)

Some of the moat with lots of moss ... there is water under it as we threw in a couple rocks! The castle fortress walls are also very impressive!

Japan's present and past together.

The inner moat castle walls.

 

The Tsutenkaku Tower  A tall tower skyscraping in the heart of the old downtown developed as an entertainment district called "Shin-Sekai" (lit. new world) more than 8 decades ago.  By modeling after the Eiffel Tower is Paris, the 64-meter tall Tsutenkaku Tower was built as the tallest tower in Asia in 1912 and it began to be recognized as a symbol of Osaka before long.  Following a fire accident in 1943, the tower had to be taken apart once during wartime and it was missed by locals for over a decade.  In 1956, reconstruction took a place and the Tsutenkaku Tower was brought back to the view of Osaka as a symbol of Osaka once again.  The tower boasts a height of 103 meters with contemporary features added to the design and is dressed up with some neon lights that make the tower glows in the night sky.  The observation deck is 91-meters high.

The Osaka NHK building ... very interesting.

The Tsutenkaku Tower in Osaka.

A view of Osaka Zoo from the observation deck of the Tsutenkaku Tower.

Views of Osaka from the observation deck of the Tsutenkaku Tower.

The top of an apartment building, very small and very interesting.

There's our car, 300 feet up in the air!

There it is ... the purple one.

 

A few more places we saw and went to in and around Osaka.

The front of Hard Rock Cafe Osaka.

The front of Hard Rock Cafe Universal City Walk Osaka.

Kashiwara is a town outside of Osaka known for it's grapes and vineyards.

This is the vineyard that Ashley and I visited to eat grapes.

Under a canopy of grapes!

Ashley cutting of a batch of grapes.

Now it is Jonathan's turn.

This is where Ashley and I sat and ate grapes.

A community garden near the vineyards.

We may start doing our taxes at Cow Cow Tax!

Wakayama Castle, from the window of our hotel.