When we plan a vacation, Tim usually researches the shopping (electronics) and I research the historical sites. With the shopping out of the way, we are free to explore other things.
On Tuesday, we headed to Shuri Castle. We took the monorail to the end which is the Shuri stop. Then, there are signs to walk there. It only took about 15 minutes.
The first entrance has steps, but we took it anyway because we didn’t see the handicapped entrance until we were leaving. There were a few gates to walk through to get to the visitor center to buy tickets for entry. Clarissa and I walked up the steps and Tim carried the stroller.
It was fun trying to explain to Clarissa why they might need so many steps or gates to protect the castle. I think she was also expecting to meet a princess as she was disappointed when I told her that no one lived there anymore.
The complex reminded me a bit of some of the palace complexes in Seoul. The big courtyard in the middle surrounded by buildings on all sides. The palaces in Seoul don’t usually have a stone wall around them though.
This building was really the start of the tour. You had to take your shoes off to walk through. The first building was the old residence and mostly wooden walls and a few small gardens.
The next building had some really cool artifacts that we weren’t allowed to take pictures of. The outside of the main building was being repainted but the inside was interesting. They let us take pictures in a few of the rooms.
The first room was the throne room. This is where a lot of the private ceremonies took place. Clarissa didn’t like the crown because it didn’t look anything like Elsa’s…
The next room showed where a lot of the meetings with other rulers took place. Also, Clarissa was fascinated by the floor. They showed the stones for the old castle that was burnt to the ground during World War 2. They decided to build it higher when they rebuilt it.
The last building had models to show things like coronations by the emperor of China.
It was interesting to see the history of having a relationship with the emperor of China and then being taken over by the Japanese.