Kochi Castle
Historic SitesPoints of Interest & LandmarksCastles
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Monday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Tuesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Wednesday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Thursday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Friday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Saturday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Sunday
9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
About
Constructed in the 1600s, this castle was originally named Otakasaka after the hill on which it resides. Built to defend the city below, the structure was partially damaged by a fire in the early 1700s but never faced a formal attack.
Suggest edits to improve what we show.
Improve this listing
Tours & experiences
Explore different ways to experience this place.
What is Travelers’ Choice?
Tripadvisor gives a Travelers’ Choice award to accommodations, attractions and restaurants that consistently earn great reviews from travelers and are ranked within the top 10% of properties on Tripadvisor.

Top ways to experience Kochi Castle and nearby attractions

Most Recent: Reviews ordered by most recent publish date in descending order.

Detailed Reviews: Reviews ordered by recency and descriptiveness of user-identified themes such as wait time, length of visit, general tips, and location information.


4.0
4.0 of 5 bubbles1,181 reviews
Excellent
429
Very good
612
Average
133
Poor
7
Terrible
0

ROCruiser
Claremont, CA4,655 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Mar 2023 • Family
This has to be the must-go place when visiting Kochi. From the cruise pier, we took taxis to the castle for cheaper than the $20 pp shuttles since we had 6 in our group. The taxis dropped us off right outside the entrance and we walked in for free. There's a lot of walking/hiking up to the top but it's beautiful and worth your steps. We took our time walking around before getting back down.
Written September 24, 2023
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

donavan94563
Orinda, CA212 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2016 • Family
Had one day in Kochi during a cruise. Traveling with a family of 4 with teens.

The main reason I believe the ships port here is to see the Kochi Castle because its known to be one the best preserved Shogun Castles. Kochi Castle (高知城, Kōchijō) is one of just twelve Japanese castles to have survived the fires, wars and other catastrophes of the post feudal age. It was first constructed between 1601 and 1611, but most of its main buildings date from 1748 when they were reconstructed after a fire.

The castle used to be the seat of the Yamauchi lords, who ruled over the surrounding region, then known as Tosa, during the Edo Period. The castle buildings have since been designated "important cultural properties", and now house local treasures and historical objects.

A unique feature of Kochi's castle is that its main tower (donjon) was not only used for military purposes, but also as a residence. In most other castles, the lords usually resided in separate palace buildings rather than in the castle keep. The castle's wooden interior maintains the appearance of it Edo Period origins, and the lookout point from the castle tower's top floor offers nice view of downtown.

The Kochi Castle (noted as a $79 per person excursion from the cruise) is easily accessible from the ship and no need to book through the cruise.

Cruise ships typically offer a free shuttle to the City Town Hall Bus Station. The Kochi Castle is only a 25 minute walk from the bus station, In addition, the walk takes you through many of the cities tourist attractions including: Kochi Yosakoi Information Exchange Center, Harimaya Bridge, Harimayabashi Shopping Street, Obiyamachi Ichibangai Shopping Street and Hirome Ichiba.

One block from the bus station is the Kochi Yosakoi Information Exchange Center which is dedicated to the Yosakoi Festival which is held in Kochi. The exchange center consists of the “Yosakoi Circle” of history and knowledge and the “Yosakoi Square” of evolutions and experiences. There is the “Yosakoi Theater” which runs films on the 60-year history of the Yosakoi Festival on a 150-inch screen. In the “Yosakoi Taiken (experience) Corner,” visitors can experience the “Seicho Yosakoi Naruko Odori” dance while holding traditional “naruko” bird clappers, or put on festival costumes and take commemorative pictures. There is also a special corner where visitors can make their own “naruko” clappers traditionally used to drive birds away from crops. Its free to walk through and worth an quick introduction to the culture of Kochi.

Located nearby the Kochi Yosakoi Information Exchange Center is the Harimaya Bridge. What makes it special is the love story behind it. If you don't read up on that, well, then it's just a small bridge. Nothing special, however if you're in the neighborhood you may want to take a picture.

Just across the street from the Kochi Yosakoi Information Exchange Center is the entrance to the Harimayabashi Shopping Street which connects to the Obiyamachi Ichibangai Shopping Street. These streets are covered and make for a very pleasant walk to the Castle (even in the heat of July). There are plenty of shops, cafes and banks/atms along the street and downtown area to occupy your time.

As noted above the walk to the castle is approximately 25 minutes from the bus station (cruise ship shuttle drop off point). If you are in Kochi in the summer months, I suggest going all the way to the Castle first in the morning to avoid the crowds and heat. There is plenty of time to do the shops on the way back. .

Once you get to Kochi Castle you will need to walk up the hill. This is a 5 minute walk up a paved road. Easily done, however could be unpleasant if hot. There are shady spots to stop and rest and take in the views. In addition, you can buy refreshments at the entrance. Once at the castle entrance there is a fee of around $4 and you will need to take off your shoes and put them in a provided plastic bag.

From the entrance you will wind your way up a series of wooden ladders/stairs to the top. Along the way up the exhibitions are well organized and documented in Japanese and English. Once up to the top, there is a magnificent 360 panoramic view of the city. Note:The series of wooden ladders/stairs become increasing steeper and narrower as you make your way up and the interior can be become quite hot, however the top level is worth the view and is much cooler..

After visiting the castle, we had lunch at Hirome Ichiba which is located next to the entrance back into Obiyamachi Ichibangai Shopping Street. Just look out for the large maneki-neko (fortune cat) sign. In Japanese, Hirome Ichica is ひろめ市場.

The market is food court style with a variety of food vendors serving ramen, yakatori, katsu and fish. The market is packed with locals and the vibe is great. Not a lot of english speakers (except for the tourist), however, the local vendors are really nice and will point and gesture. Grab a spot on one of the many shared tables.

We came here to eat the local specialty of seared bonito tuna (katsuo-tataki). One of the central stalls specializes in Katsuo tataki and can be easily identified by the high flame grill and long lines.

Katsuo tataki can be seared on a gas stove yet Kochi resident prefer it warayaki which means grilled over a straw fire. Fillets of bonito are wrapped in straw and cooked over coal fire so the outside is slightly charred and inside is still raw and tender. The short and intense burst of flames create a lightly burn crisp outside where most of the fat is located. Unlike other kinds of sashimi, the fish is sliced vertically into thick pieces instead of the traditional angled pulling motion. Served with rock salt, the amazing smoky flavour is best washed down with draft beer. Free cold tea is also available.

All in all, a great way to spend the day in Kochi with a family visiting the castle, having a great local lunch and strolling and shopping the streets. Even my teens enjoyed the day.
Written July 31, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

KodoDrummer
Buenos Aires, Argentina65,013 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
May 2019 • Friends
The castle was built between 1601 and 1611, and after a fire, rebuilt over the 1729 to 1753 period. It was rebuild using the same materials and design. Thus today, it looks very much as it did 300 to 400 years ago. The grounds also contain beautiful gardens.
Written May 19, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Greg M
Toronto, Canada107 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2018 • Friends
The review “Day Trip to Kochi/Kochi Castle from Cruise Port in Kochi” posted by donavan94563 on Trip Advisor on July 31, 2016 was excellent. It layout a great itinerary with lots of background information for a “Do It Yourself” ¾ day shore excursion while your cruise ship is docked in Kochi City. We followed Donavan’s suggestions when we went there during our August 2018 cruise on the Diamond Princess and had a wonderful time. I just want to update his review with some of our own experience and to include a map of the area to help you with your orientation.
First, there was no free shuttle from the port to the city. Diamond Princess charged U$10 per person for the shuttle. Our Princess shuttle drop-off was in Dentetsutaminarubiru Mae Station which is almost directly across from the Kochi Yosakoi Information Exchange Cente. From there, it was about a 20-minute walk to the Kochi Castle.
After we got off the shuttle, we crossed the street to visit Harimaya Bridge. It is not a big bridge, but has a couple of love stories associated with it. The Harimaya Bridge appears in “Yosakoi-bushi,” a traditional folk song in Kochi Prefecture. The lyrics partly read: “I saw a monk buy a hairpin near the Harimaya Bridge in Kochi of Tosa…” It was a love story between Junshin, a priest of the Chikurin-ji temple on Godaisan (Mt. Godai) in the eastern part of Kochi City, and Ouma, daughter of a tinker, set in an area around the Harimaya Bridge. The second story was a 2009 film “The Harimaya Bridge” made by American filmmaker Aeron Woolfolk. It was a story about an American man who traveled to rural Japan after his estranged son died there in a traffic accident. While there, he discovered some secrets his son left behind. It was a film about racism, forbidden love and forgiveness.
Just around the corner of the Harimaya Bridge was the entrance to the covered Obiyamachi Ichibangai Shopping Street帯屋町 and the Hirome Ichica market ひろめ市場. The shopping street is wide, clean and pleasant with many stores on both sides. One of the stores that we enjoyed shopping in Japan was the Daiso 1,000 yen store. Unlike Canadian and US Dollar Stores, the merchandise in Daiso are of quite good quality. Unless otherwise marked, all items are 1,000 yens. I especially like its cosmetic bags which I use to store my various electrical and camera stuff (chargers, adapters, batteries, flash memory sticks, memory cards, etc.) and packing cubes and shore bags (in the top floor) . These cubes or bags are great for packing, organizing and storing clothes in your suitcase while you travel. The zipper quality is not the greatest; but at 1,000 yen for a small cube and 1,800 yen for a medium one, they were great bargains.
Hirome Market was an interesting food court with more than 60 stalls selling a wide variety of local food, including seafood and wagyu beef. One thing not to be missed is the Katsuo tataki,明神丸, or skip jack cod loin seared with straw fire. The market gets busy during lunch. We had lunch there, but finding an empty table was quite a challenge.
Just across the street on the other exit of Hirome Market is the Kochi Castle. Before crossing the street, we found a number of hardware stores selling nail clippers, kitchen shears and knives. Japan is renowned for its high quality steel. The nail clippers were our prized souvenirs.
Kochi sits on the broad alluvial plain facing Urado Bay. This city in Shikoku takes its name from the great feudal castle that sits at its very heart. Completed in 1611, Kochi Castle was the seat of Yamauchi Kazutoyo 山内一豊, a noted warrior who supported Tokugawa Ieyasu 德川家康 in his successful quest to become Shogun. Tosa Province and Kochi Castle were Yamauchi's reward for faithful service. There is an historical irony here: 250 years later, a Kochi native son - a former low-ranked samurai and now ronin named Sakamoto Ryoma坂本 龍馬 - played a pivotal role in bringing the Tokugawa Shogunate to an end and restoring the Emperor of Japan to political prominence. The prize once awarded for faithful service became a hotbed of support for the Meiji Restoration.
Admission to Kochi Castle was free, unless you want to climb the Castle Tower (420 yen). There were a couple of beautiful statues – one of Yamauchi Kazutoyo on his famed warhorse, and another one of the war horse and his wife Chiyo 千代. Chiyo has long been considered as the ideal samurai wife. According to legend, she made her kimono out of a quilted patchwork of bits of old cloth and save pennies to buy her husband, Yamauchi, a magnificent horse on which he rode to many victories. Their love story was quite unusual among samurais. Yamauchi never took another wife or concubine even though Chiyo only gave him a daughter. Near Chiyo’s statue is a tablet by Yamauchi commemorating her death.
We visited the Kochi Yosakoi Information Exchange Center as our last stop before returning to ship. Yosakoi Festival in Kochi is one of Japan’s 10 largest festivals held each year from August 9 to 12 (and we just missed it). There was a “Yosakoi Theater” which ran films on the 60-year history of the Yosakoi Festival. In the “Yosakoi Taiken (experience) Corner,” visitors can experience the “Seicho Yosakoi Naruko Odori” dance while holding traditional “naruko” bird clappers, or put on festival costumes and take commemorative pictures. Free admission and nice clean toilets in the center.
Written September 19, 2018
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

CancunVoyager
Miami Fla.536 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Nov 2019
As in the movies, this was the opportunity to meet a samurai castle and not be disappointed. Although there are few original interiors left, the experience is great. First you will climb many stairs to reach the mountain where the castle stands, from there you will still climb to the last floor through very difficult, tall and small steps where many tourists get stuck on the road, but you will finally get to appreciate majestic views of the surroundings .
You will go back to the samurai era
Written December 31, 2019
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

SFBayAreaTrekker
San Francisco Bay Area (CA)565 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2016 • Couples
Kochi Castle was a surprise and welcomed add-on to our tour. The size is very impressive and massive. The views are beautiful picturesque.

To imagine this castle has withstood many years and numerous earthquakes. Both the structure and grounds are very well maintained.
Written September 14, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

drsheryl
Toronto, Canada172 contributions
4.0 of 5 bubbles
Aug 2016 • Friends
Visiting kochi castle on a hot August day is tough. Go as early as you can--I think that it opens at 10 but u should check that out of their website! Those with mobility issues should probably just view the castle from the distance. There are many steps leading up to the castle--it was built on a hill for protection from enemies. Once inside, they give you a recycled plastic bag for your shoes. I brought socks to wear. You climb approximately 5 or 6 sets of stairs with a break between each set. The stairs are steep---you need to really take a large step up--and the steps are narrow--made for tiny feet. I just fit under the rafters (5'4") so tall people must duck down. There is a great breeze at the top and you can walk outside at the top--but I'm afraid of heights so I didn't venture on the balconies!! Overall, not much different than matsue castle but I'm not a castle maven!!!
Written August 12, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

GBJ-Cookies
South Shields, UK1,582 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2016 • Family
Living in a part of the world where you are less than 1 hour drive to around 20+ castles, we thought it would be interesting to see how this one stacked up. We visited on a very hot dsy and the place was quite busy. It's a very steep walk up, with the steps getting bigger thr further up you go. There are several drinks vendors on the climb up and an ice cream seller. Before you start your ascent of the castle you must remove your shoes, its pretty cramped inside, one line up, one line down. Once at the top you can walk round outside to take in the view. If you are arriving via a cruise ship don't make the mistake of booking there excursion, the castle is easily accessible by public transport.
Written July 30, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

gonealot
Phoenix, AZ169 contributions
3.0 of 5 bubbles
Jul 2016 • Friends
What we could see from the ground looked amazing, but since it was an extremely hot humid day and a couple of us felt the climb would be too much we only saw what was visible from the first landing. One of our group did climb to the top and said it was worth the climb for her. She did not feel she could walk the long walk back to the bus station and needed to get a taxi.
Written July 26, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

0POPEY0
Brasov, Romania72 contributions
5.0 of 5 bubbles
Jun 2016 • Couples
A not to be miss place in Kochi . Is one of the best preserve Shogun Castle in Japan with access till the last flor of the construction from where you can see the best panorama of the city . Also a an architectural masterpieces having in mind that is made from wood without using iron pins to keep tight the joints of the structure .
Not to be miss.
Written June 29, 2016
This review is the subjective opinion of a Tripadvisor member and not of Tripadvisor LLC. Tripadvisor performs checks on reviews as part of our industry-leading trust & safety standards. Read our transparency report to learn more.

Showing results 1-10 of 156
Is this your Tripadvisor listing?
Own or manage this property? Claim your listing for free to respond to reviews, update your profile and much more.
Claim your listing

Kochi Castle - All You Need to Know BEFORE You Go (with Photos)

Frequently Asked Questions about Kochi Castle



Restaurants near Kochi Castle: View all restaurants near Kochi Castle on Tripadvisor


Kochi Castle Information

Excellent Reviews

429

Very Good Reviews

612

Kochi Castle Photos

1,732