11.11.2013 - 11.11.2013
We hadn’t planned very well for our free day so it took awhile to decide where to go (there’s so many options!). Finally we decided on Hikone Castle and took the train up there.
On the way we reserved seats for our trip back to Tokyo and the airport and then stopped to get tourist information. After a quick lunch at a shopping mall we walked to the castle. Early on we noticed a cute mascot all over town and quickly discovered it was Hikonyan, the town mascot!
Despite having visited a few castles already Hikone felt very different because it was complete and mostly original so we were walking through the actual twisting pathways to reach the top.
The castle was open for you to go up into it and it was really awesome (with a very steep staircase!) to see inside.
After trying to wait to watch the bell being rung (I guess we misunderstood the times or something) we headed down to the gardens at the base and enjoyed a stroll before heading back to Kyoto.