Photo of the day! The bridge at Odawara castyle

2 mins read

Photos by Matt S. 

I’m going to start a new feature where I share photos of my trips to Japan – God knows I take enough of them (I’ve got around 11,000 stored on hard drives), and I want to share my passion for the country, and everything within it. So, each day I’m going to share a photo from Japan and tell a bit of background story behind it.

I took this photo at Odawara castle, which is a little west of Tokyo. Samurai Warriors fans will recognise the name “Hojo,” and Odawara castle was that daimyo family’s seat of power. Unfortunately the original castle no longer stands; what’s there today is a precise replica, which offers tourists some spectacular views from the top, and a museum within, explaining the history of the Hojo family and the region.

But I actually like this shot of the bridge more than the castle itself. I have a deep love of the aesthetics of classical Japanese bridges. Particularly the shade of red they tend to use. It doesn’t matter what’s going on in the background, or how modern everything around the bridge is, a Japanese bridge does immediately remind you of the old Japan, and these structures have such a sense of tranquility about them, all by themselves.

I really recommend a trip to Odawara castle if you find yourself in Japan. It’s a couple of hours out of Tokyo (but still easy to do as a day trip), and all the castle grounds have been meticulously maintained. It’s a very large, and lovely park, with plenty of history and stories to tell, and plenty of stunning photo opportunities.

And Odawara itself is a city that not enough tourists visit; it’s really quite lovely.

– Matt S.
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