Things to Do | Visit Chiba | Latest update:2021/05/31
Famous all over Chiba as one of the best cherry blossom locations, Shiroyama Park wraps around the base of the high-seated Tateyama Castle. “Shiroyama” (lit. Castle Mountain) Park is aptly named, because as you stand at the base, one of the first things you’ll notice is Tateyama Castle peering down at you from above. You can make a bee-line for the castle and be treated to an excellent view of the area from the top, but there is much to explore in this park, and you’ll soon see why locals and visitors keep returning.
The base of the park has a cozy cafe next to a grassy field, where you’ll often see local farmers selling vegetables on weekends. There are two paths from here up to the top of the mountain, one leading to the barbecue area that’s popular in spring and summer, and one leading to the Japanese tea house and garden, as well as the plum tree grove beyond. Take either path to find more densely forested spots of the park, where you can take a few moments to bird watch and enjoy a variety of local species fluttering between trees. The views are always a treat here, as the colors of the flowers, shrubs, and trees within the park undergo breathtaking changes along with the seasons. The vivid pinks of late winter and spring, the dense green of summer that melts into the yellows and reds of autumn, and even the scarce beauty of winter all make for an invigorating day in nature.
The Japanese garden near the castle here is adorned with winding rock paths, and coated with a natural shade of green. The only sound is the rustling of leaves in the gentle breeze, and the flowing water from the stream. A stroll through here will lead you to the opposite end of the park away from the castle, and is sure to calm your spirit. If you want to enjoy the ambiance and scenery longer, you can stop in the traditionally designed tea house for sweets and green tea (inquire for hours of operation). The central room of the tea house is spacious and modestly decorated, filled with the homely smell of tatami grass mats that whisk you back to traditional Japan. The wood-framed sliding glass doors provide a picturesque scene of the outside garden from inside the room, unobstructed by anything steel or concrete.
The Tateyama Municipal Museum is a nice stop in the corner of the park, displaying both artifacts and art from the warrior days of Tateyama, as well as regularly changing exhibits from local artists. The second floor also has a section with traditional farming and household equipment, giving you a look at how people in the Boso area of Chiba lived in the past. This isn’t the only place to learn of Tateyama’s past however. The castle at the peak of the park is also a museum, largely dedicated to the Hakkenden epic novel that romanticizes the samurai warrior past of Tateyama Castle.
2239 Kamisanagura, Tateyama City
(10 minutes by car from JR Tateyama Station. )
351-2 Tateyama, Tateyama City
(Access via Shiroyama Park: 10 minutes by car from JR Tateyama Station. )