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Himeiji
Kyoto

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Higashi-Honganji Temple | Kinkankuji (Golden Pavillion) | Ryoanji Temple and Rock Garden | Kiyomizu Temple | Himeiji

The White Heron Castle...

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Himeiji Castle is also called "White Heron Castle" because of it's color and archetecture. But I think that if the pigeons were bats, this view of Himeiji Castle could be a "haunted" house on Scooby Doo.

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This armor is much closer to what I imagine the warriors to have been wearing. Unfortunately the lighting was rather poor inside, so some of the incredible detail is lost with a picture.

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This was labled the "suicide quarters" on the map of the castle. It is set up almost like a stage with areas for people to assist in the samurai's ritual disembowelment (seppuku).

Unfortunately, suicide is considered an honorable redemption of oneself here in Japan.

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Like any decent castle, Himeiji has a moat. But instead of the moat being filled with impressive flesh eating creatures, it was stocked with what they call carp...but looked more like overgrown goldfish. Maybe they were a particularly dangerous breed of goldfish.

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Although dark, the inside of the castle was set up like a museum. The walls were covered with gun racks. I have to admit it's weird to think of samurais using guns.

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Under this grating and plant life is a well. It is said to have been used for washing swords and heads and other messy things that result from disembowlment and beheadings.

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This is a view from one of the many holes out of which samurais would shoot arrows, guns or throw stones.

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This is a view of the castle from where they kept the women who were probably ladies in waiting for the princess.