Himeji Castle (pronounced Himejijō in Japanese), is considered Japan's most spectacular castle for its incredible size and beautiful design. It's also known as White Heron Castle (Shirasagijo) with its elegant, white appearance. It's very well preserved for a castle built in the 1400s and contains some very complex castle grounds.
Both a national treasure and a world heritage site, Himeji Castle stood the test of time, both surviving the war and numerous earthquakes and fires.
The castle went through a series of renovations and fully re-opened in 2015, making it a perfect time to go visit the area!
Wabisuke is about a 5 min walk from Himeji Castle on the north-western side of the moat. The restaurant is inside a tradtional old-style Japanese house and gives it an authentic kind of feel. If you're heading here for lunch budget for around 1500 yen.
The set meal for lunch is full of value, with a selection of traditional but creative cuisine, including Japanese style rice, pickles, sashimi, grilled chicken, salad, soup, and dessert. It costs 1500 yen but for that price you get plenty to eat!
It's all in the name here. Tamagoya means "Egg store" in Japanese - so it's easy to see why they are crazy about eggs. Quite a popular place in Himeji for lunch, they serve up great dishes with a focus on fresh eggs. Budget is around 1000 yen here for lunch. It's directly opposite Sakuramon entrance on the southern end of Himeji Castle park.
If you're coming here, I'd recommend to try the eel and pork bowl with a fresh egg and green onions. The idea is to mix in the egg with the rice which cooks the egg. Yum!
Located in the southwest corner of Himeji Castle grounds, Koko-en, is Kassuiken, a lovely traditional Japanese restaurant serving up some amazing local dishes. Open for lunch during the opening hours of the gardens, Kassuiken is a wonderful place to sit back, relax, and enjoy some terrific Japanese meal.
The recommendation here is the Grilled Eel! It's a specialty in the area and well worth a try. If you want a little more try the soba noodles, or if you want to go all out get the Kaiseki lunch which comes with a large number of small dishes! Budget for around 1500-2000 yen per person.
Legare is located just opposite the Sakuramon entrance of the Himeji Castle grounds on the southern end of the park. There are number of things to get in Legare but I have heard the Oden is a top dish to try here! Open from 10am - 3:30pm, come here for lunch. Budget for up to 1000 yen.
If you're still a little hungry after your lunch head downstairs and grab one of the many ice creams available. You won't be disappointed either. There are plenty of unique flavours to try!
Shoan modern little cafe is traditionally looking building located on the western side on Himeji Castle within a 5 minute walk. The owners focus on fresh, locally sourced food, and present it with a Japanese modern twist. Well worth a visit! Budget is around 1000 yen.
Open from 11am - 6pm its a perfect place to enjoy a light lunch full of fresh vegetables like this croquet meal set above. Soy bean and pork soup, heart shaped egg and carrot cakes, caprese salad, beef and noodle croquet, and locally grown brown rice. Come here for a healthy lunch!
Take a trip down to Himeji Castle! Only 80 mins from Osaka!