The surprising size and scale of the Saga Castle main keep. Structures found there truly instill a sense of its long history.
The city of Saga in Kyushu is the seat of the Saga prefectural government. It faces the Ariake Sea on the south and is home to Saga Airport. In the center of the city is the Saga Castle History Museum, which also serves as the city’s symbol. The castle itself is no longer standing, but the main keep has been reconstructed, resulting in one of the largest wooden structures in Japan. Its size and scale are quite surprising, and inside can be found a 45-meter-long ‘tatami’ corridor and a 320 ‘tatami’ mat hall (about 528 square meters). Near the history museum is the Saga Prefecture Office, and from the observatory hall on the 12th floor, you can enjoy a magnificent view of a part of moat running through the castle, as well as the entire city.
In addition, from around the end of October to the beginning of November, the Saga International Balloon Festival is held. The main site is located along the Kase-gawa River, and every year nearly100 hot-air balloons join in and more than 1 million people gather to enjoy the spectacle.
The Ariake Sea, located in the southern part of the city, features the largest dry beach in Japan, and is a well-known habitat of unusual fish and shellfish. Enjoy famous seafood featuring ‘mutsugoro (mudskipper)’ and shellfish such as ‘tairagi (jumbo mussels),’ or feast upon a high quality Saga beef steak.