Hagi is a beautiful city located in the North area of the Yamaguchi Prefecture, well-preserved until today with a beautiful history and culture behind that you will find yourself immersed in.

Hagi is well-known for its ruins and castle town, also for high-quality crafts, known as Hagiyaki Pottery.

The town has been maintaining its old charm and appearance since the Edo Period and nowadays there are quite a few tours around the place that you can join.

Besides being able to dress up in a samurai outfit or kimono and sightsee or rather, be a part of this magnificent picture, you can also try out seeing the town by riding a rickshaw! That would be a unique and fun experience and you will be able to see a lot of the splendid places in Hagi.

Below are some other things I recommend doing or seeing while visiting the former castle city:

1. See the ruins of Hagi Castle (Shizuki park)

The castle was built in 1604 by Mori Terumoto and in 1967, it was listed as one of the UNESCO World Historical Sites on the National register. The place also looks amazing in spring, so if you plan on seeing the cherry blossoms, I recommend putting it on your list.

2. Visit Gokokuzan Tokoji Temple

The temple of Zen Buddhism built by the third lord of Hagi, Mori Yoshinari has more than 500 stone lanterns facing the tombs of the Mori Clan that are buried here. It is quite an impressive view and same as many other places in Yamaguchi Prefecture, Tokoji Temple is also one of the Important Cultural Properties listed on the National Register.

3. Visit the Shoin Shrine and its surroundings

The Shoin Shrine is located in eastern Hagi and has been dedicated to the great scholar of Edo, Torajiro (Yoshida Shoin). Nearby you will also find the birthplace of Yoshida Shoin, along with Ito Hirobumi's Old Residence (Hirobumi was Japan’s first prime minister) and Shokasonjuku Academy, where Torajiro gave lessons for approximately a year.

4. Make Hagi-yaki Pottery

As I said, Hagi is popular for its fine crafts and there are quite a few tours that offer it. You can also buy the pottery online from Hagiyakiya if interested. The Hagi Uragami Museum has many of this lovely town’s ceramics and is one of the best ranking attractions in the Yamaguchi Prefecture.

5. Visit Kikuya Residence (Kikuyake Jyutaku)

The Kikuya Residence was a merchant’s house and it was built in the Edo Period. The merchant called Kikuya used to work for the Hagi Clan and the building has stunning architecture and has been well-preserved until now. Its kitchen house even occupies a place on the National Register of Important Cultural list.

If you plan on visiting Hagi, you can also go to the Kikugahama beach, known for its white sand and discover many surreal sceneries while strolling around the town and having a taste of old Japan.

You should also pay a visit to the Hagi Museum for more information regarding the place’s nature, culture and history, explore the ancient houses and discover samurai residences from Edo along with the Hagi Castle town area and the shrines and temples around.

Enjoy your trip and don’t forget to have a taste of the local cuisine and Yamaguchi's sake while there.

By - cinnamonellie.