Kitsuki City, a typical castle town, in the northeastern part of the Kunisaki Peninsula, boasts unchanged townscape from the Edo period, featuring ‘suya-no-saka’ slope and ‘kitadai-bukeyasiki-dori’ street.
There runs east and west an old road franked with many time-honored shops in the heart of Kitsuki City, and old samurai warrior quarters on either side of this road are found over the hills. This district is said to be Japan’s best preserved castle town by many historians.
The first picture shows the distant view of the warrior quarter on the northern hill, called ‘kitadai-bukeyashiki-dori’, seen from the southern hill. The ascending road in the center of the picture is ‘suya-no-saka’, literally means a slope near a vinegar shop.
While in the second picture, samurai warrior’s old houses are seen along ‘kitadai-bukeyashiki-dori’ road, some of them are opened to the public.
As the old part of this city is with lots of ups and downs, unlike other old castle towns, most of the slopes were built for the convenience of going on horseback or by palanquin, that is, with a low difference in level and deep steps.
By Masahisa Takaki.
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