IS JAPAN COOL? OKINAWA
1. Royal palace of the Kingdom of Ryukyu and the largest gusuku (Okinawan for “castle”) in Okinawa Prefecture.
2. In 2000, the ruins of Shuri Castle were designated as a UNESCO World Heritage Site.
3. Today, the remaining structures include the reconstructed Main Building and castle walls.
4. Unlike traditional Japanese fortresses, Shuri Castle shows the strong influence of Chinese castle architecture. Dragons are often used as design patterns on the red-painted gates and pillars, symbolizing royal power.
5. The Main Building opens up to a wide space once used to welcome emissaries of other nations, such as China. It is surrounded by the administrative North Building, ceremonial South Building, and Hojinmon entrance to the royal garden, within castle walls with entry gates.
6. Access: By foot or by bus from Shuri Station of Yui Rail.