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Trip Report Bitchu-Matsuyama Castle Visit

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I told someotherguy I would report back after I visited the castle and compare the access walk/hike to Yamadera Temple.

I took the shared taxi that I had reserved the day before (I was the only passenger) for 500 yen. It goes to the upper parking lot. I knew I was in trouble when I saw the box of walking sticks at the path entrance. Japan-guide says it's 600 meters from the lot to the castle but it's 700 and I have the directional sign photos to prove it.

I found the walk extremely challenging and I'm in pretty good shape for a youthful senior citizen. As someotherguy said in his post of 3/15 it's steps, steps and steps with stretches of path in between.....and all slanting uphill. As I walked I was thinking if my trip insurance would air evac me down...lol....I was really out of breath from time to time and stopped to rest. It took me about half an hour. Inside the castle on the top floor was a small shrine where you could leave an offering and pray. I prayed for a successful downward trip....

It was definitely worth the hike as this was my 11th of 12 original castles. I had done 9 and 10, Maruoka and Inuyama, two weeks earlier. I thought Maruoka was a bit difficult as the inner stairs were so steep that there were ropes to haul yourself up with, but easy compared to this imo.

So to make a long story short, someotherguy, compared to the castle I think Yamadera is a piece of cake. The steps are concrete and not terribly steep and there is railing most of the time (which there wasn't most of the castle hike). I think you should do it easily if you were able to do the castle.

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