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Shuri Castle

There are places you go to for a cultural immersion; to exercise or mesh with traditions. There are places you go to for an adventure, random or not. To a far distance or just around the corner. There are places you go for an event. So many places you go to for fun, or whatever it is your heart desires. Some arequiet; a nature wandering or a beach walk perhaps. Some are spectacular. You go to some places for some or for solely for the experience, familiar and foreign or unique. And there are these places you go to that are simply significant that you can’t just let it pass.

I am halfway through my stay here in Okinawa, Japan. When a false alarm that my stay here may cut short, I immediately dragged a friend so I can hit this historically important place.

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I have walked through these grounds. I have entered the rooms and passageways where the royalties and its citizenry once were. I was admiring the majesty of the castle – the architechtural designs, its garden, the gate entrances, down to the courtyard and up to the intricate roofs and displays.  I relished in the priviledge of setting foot in its court that were used for gatherings and where its troops practiced and performed Karate, the martial arts the whole world knows about. I have touched its walls that protected the Kingdom of Ryukyu.

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Visiting Shurijo Castle is for its signifance. Tangibly, it’s purely sightseeing. Spiritually, it is a lot of things.

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The castle’s history is the Ryukyu Kingdom’s history itself.

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And for these mere reasons that I wanted to visit this place. That I just couldn’t leave Okinawa without seeing it. I feel more connected with the island much more than ever. I have been to the very soul of Ryukyu Islands, the birthplace of Karate, and what is now called Okinawa.

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It may not be as eventful but the satisfaction of visiting Shuri Castle lies for its historical and cultural significance.

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Last Call…

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For more of details about Shuri Castle.

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48 Comments

  1. Glad you got to see this place – it’s beautiful, your photos awesome! ~SueBee

  2. Jay Dee says:

    Beautiful place. I’d planned to go to Okinawa around 5 years ago, but it didn’t pan out. I’m still in Japan, though. I need to get there someday. I would love to see Shuri Castle.

  3. Ingrid says:

    Thanks for sharing your stay in Japan. This is indeed a very interesting building. I also love that you’re featuring a different blog in your posts. Enjoy the rest of your time in Okinawa :-)

    • rommel says:

      It takes extra time for me to feature a blog. I’m glad I finally had a little bit extra time to do it with this post. Thanks for the compliment, Ingrid.

  4. Angeline M says:

    Love the detail in your photos. The angles of the roofs are excellent.

  5. So loving the pictures.as always

  6. Amy says:

    The photos shows the majesty of the castle and tells the glorious history through the details. I’m so glad you had a chance to explore the place before you leave. Thank you for taking us there, Rommel!

  7. Lucid Gypsy says:

    How amazing, your photos as always are brilliant, especially the dragons. A stunning place, I love the little details you’ve captured. Forgive me but it also looks like the setting for a sophisticated computer game!

    • rommel says:

      Ahihihi…. Didn’t think about that… but it is so true. According to my friend Wiki, it was used to base on for a game portion of Call of Duty. :D

  8. Oh my goodness, I remember visiting Shuri castle when I was a kid living in Okinawa!! These beautiful pictures brought back memories. Thank you so much for sharing. The castle is certainly magnificent, but it looked monumental to an impressionable 8-year-old.

  9. Paula says:

    I will probably never get there so I am grateful for this virtual immersion. Enjoy it, Rommel, and have a safe flight home!

  10. Wow, the buildings are all red. Great captures of those architecture designs! I hope you had the best of times in Okinawa.

  11. Sun says:

    gosh, i just love the clean look from this culture. that last photo with just the room and floor mat – was it once living space? love the minimalist look and that reminds me… i must throw out a bunch of junk! so glad you found some time to visit this historical place – thanks! ☺

  12. Sun says:

    oh, and the Old Woman on a Bicycle blog – what a great find. she definitely is inspirational!

  13. Hey Rommel, how’s the weather in Okinawa these days? We have a few weeks free in January, and trying to find some warmer than Seoul options. :)

    • rommel says:

      Not too shabby. :D I just did kayaking then took a swim afterwards last week. The rain comes from time to time. but overall it’s warm during the day then a little bit chilly at night. I don’t know about January though. It shouldn’t be of a drastic change than what we have now.

      • Really, wow! Cuz I’ve been checking temp, and it says about 23 degrees as a high. Is it really warm enough to swim? Cuz the pictures I’ve seen of the waters around Okinawa are soooo beautiful! I definitely want to go when we can take a dip!

  14. johanesjonaz says:

    What a beautiful architecture ! The evidence of high quality of art and beauty if Japan’s dynasty.
    You did a great job with this writing, as always!

    • rommel says:

      Thank you. Actually, the restoration is a mixture of what was then and blended with what Okinawa has acquired or has been continue from when it was during RyuKyu period.

  15. themofman says:

    Rommel, thank you so much for showing this. For those of us karateka we hold a tremendous amount of respect for the traditions and origins out karate.

    • rommel says:

      I remember you were the one who knows and mentioned about Okinawa being the birthplace of karate. Glad you liked Shuri Castle as it’s very associated with that.

  16. Rommel it’s been sooo long since I’ve last visited your site! Still fresh photos and words! :)

  17. I’m really glad you didn’t miss such a spectacular place. It is sometimes difficult to gauge the size of a building in a photo, but it looks really large to me. Is it? It’s very impressive. I can sense that you really connected to this landmark Castle, and Okinawa as a whole appears to be such a unique and culturally rich place! Your photos of the detail on the Castle are really nice!

    • rommel says:

      The whole area is really spacious. The castle is bigger than my apartment :D but not so big, I guess, compared to others. Not visiting Shuri castle is like going to California without going to San Francisco, LA or San Diego. ;)

  18. Awesome pics of this amazing place, Rommel. The sense of history when visiting here, must be almost tangible. Those dragons are really special. They would make nice pets, I think. :)

  19. poppytump says:

    What a place Rommel ! So pristine and such views over the city by the looks of it . I can hear from your all words this trip has been something special to you .
    Love your golden dragons shot :-)

    • rommel says:

      It’s special because Japan is very associated with castle and temple. Sadly, There are only a few here in Okinawa. So really, visiting Shuri Catle is a must for me, especially they turned down my request of going to Tokyo and Kyoto. :( Oh well, I’ll make the best out of Okinawa.

  20. restlessjo says:

    From one amazing place to another, Rommel! Your photos are a joy! :)

  21. WordsFallFromMyEyes says:

    So so neat, clean. And it looks so peaceful. Just beautiful. Great experience, Rommel – & wonderful photos.

  22. Madhu says:

    Looks and sounds like an amazing place Rommel! Thank you for showing us a Japan that we will likely never see.

  23. LuAnn says:

    You can tell just be looking at your photos that there is a spiritual feel to this setting, something I very much appreciate about the Eastern ways. Enjoy your remaining time in Japan Rommel.

  24. […] The most prominent one, because it was reconstructed after World War II, is the palace of Shuri. […]

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