五稜郭タワー Goryokaku Tower
- Around Hakodate
- Travelko Rating
- ClosedOpen Every Day
Beautiful historical site
Hakodate has a long and unique history standing out in Hokkaido, the former site of Goryokaku Fort is a symbol of its history and landmark. The site was designated as a Special Historical Site in 1952, the only one in Hokkaido even now, and is nicknamed as Goryokaku Park. Goryokaku Fort was completed in 1864 by the Tokugawa shogunate as the Hakodate Magistrate’s office which aimed to be the political, diplomatic and defensive base of Hokkaido. Goryokaku Fort was modeled after European citadel towns, therefore its shape is uniquely pentagonal style differed from Japanese castles. The fort was a battlefield between the remainder of Tokugawa shogunate and the new Meiji government at the beginning of the Meiji era during the so-called Hakodate war, after the war the Meiji government achieved stability.
Now the park serves as an oasis for citizens, it is surrounded by moat and mound with stone walls and there are about 1,600 cherry trees in the park which bloom in spring all at once! The park hosts Hakodate Goryokaku Festival in July, Hakodate’s Historical pageant in August and the Dream Pentagonal Stars (lit up by 2,000 lights) during the Winter.
Goryokaku Tower is adjacent to the park and provides the best place to look down at the park. The observatory of the tower consists of two stories, the elevator takes 30 people to the first floor of the observatory at the height of 86 meters in 30 sec, then you go up the stairs to the second floor at 90 meter high. There is the exhibition space on the second floor which provides the history of Goryokaku Fort, and especially the model of the Fort and the elaborate miniature figures representing the civil war are interesting.
If you have more time, Hakodate Bugyosho Magistrate’s Office inside the park is a nice place to visit too. You can access it by crossing the bridge over the moat. It was constructed in 1864 but was taken to pieces after the Hakodate war. In 1985 as a symbol of Goryokaku the restoration of the building was planned, and in 2010 it was recreated the same as the building 140 years ago under careful researches, excavations and traditional architectural technologies. You will be impressed by the beautiful wooden structure and Samurai’s workplace with traditional fixtures.
- * The information above is from the date of the review. Please be aware that some of the content may vary from the most recent information.
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