[Touring] [Aichi Prefecture] Motorcycle trip to Nagoya Castle! Magnificent scenery and solo travel for castle lovers

Hello, this is _hiroyuki.ta. This time, I went on a tour to Nagoya Castle in Nagoya City, Aichi Prefecture. Nagoya Castle is one of the most important castles in Japan’s history and culture, and is famous for its shimmering golden roof decoration in the shape of a horsefish. In this article, we will introduce what Nagoya Castle is, how to get there, what kind of highlights there are, and information on parking if you go there by bike. Let’s enjoy a bike trip to Nagoya Castle together!


What is Nagoya Castle?

Nagoya Castle was built by Tokugawa Ieyasu after he established the Edo Shogunate, and was used for approximately 260 years as the residence of the Owari Tokugawa family, one of the three Tokugawa families. Nagoya Castle was a magnificent castle that used the most advanced technology of the time, and its large castle tower and Honmaru Palace were designated as national treasures, but they were destroyed by air raids during the Pacific War. Currently, you can tour the castle tower, which was rebuilt after the war, and the Honmaru Palace, which was restored in 2009. In addition, the Ninomaru Garden, a place of scenic beauty, and the corner turret are valuable structures that still exist. Nagoya Castle is designated as a national special historic site and is highly regarded as a representative example of Japan’s early modern castles.

Route to Nagoya Castle

I set out from central Tokyo on a Harley Sports Glide (FLSB). Nagoya Castle is about 350 kilometers away, but you can get there in about 5 hours by expressway. The route I took was as follows.

  • Drive along the Shuto Expressway from central Tokyo.
  • From the Shuto Expressway, enter the Tomei Expressway.
  • Proceed west on the Tomei Expressway.
  • Exit the Tomei Expressway at Hamamatsu Nishi Interchange.
  • Proceed north on National Route 1.
  • Enter Tokai Kanjo Expressway at Toyohashi Interchange.
  • Proceed west on the Tokai Kanjo Expressway.
  • Exit the Tokai Kanjo Expressway at the Marunouchi Interchange.
  • Proceed south along Castle Town Street.
  • Arrive at the parking lot in front of the Nagoya Castle main gate.

There are service areas and parking areas along the way on this route, so don’t forget to take breaks and refuel.

Highlights of Nagoya Castle

There are many things to see at Nagoya Castle, but I especially recommend the following three.

Honmaru Palace

Honmaru Palace is a building located in the center of Nagoya Castle, and was used for residence and government affairs of the Owari Tokugawa family. The Honmaru Palace is said to be a masterpiece of early modern castle palaces, with its gorgeous decorations, carvings, and wall paintings. Honmaru Palace was faithfully restored over a period of about 10 years after being destroyed in the war, and opened to the public in 2018. The tour fee for Honmaru Palace is 500 yen. Inside the Honmaru Palace, there are exhibits introducing the history and culture of the Owari Tokugawa family, so be sure to take a look.

castle tower

The castle tower is a building known as the symbol of Nagoya Castle, and its glittering golden shachi-shaped roof decoration catches the eye. The castle tower was rebuilt with reinforced concrete in 1959 after being destroyed by fire during the war. Inside the castle tower, the history and models of Nagoya Castle are displayed, and from the top floor you can see the cityscape of Nagoya. However, the castle tower has deteriorated and is currently not accessible. Plans are underway to restore the castle tower to a wooden structure, with completion expected in 2032. Until the reconstruction of the castle tower is completed, please enjoy just the exterior.

Ninomaru Garden, a scenic spot

Ninomaru Garden, a place of scenic beauty, is a garden located northeast of Nagoya Castle, and is the largest garden for a feudal lord in Japan. Ninomaru Garden, a scenic spot, was built during the Edo period, but was closed down during the Meiji period. It was then redeveloped in 2009 and opened to the public in 2016. The Ninomaru Garden, a scenic spot, has ponds, waterfalls, bridges, stone lanterns, and more, and you can enjoy seasonal flowers and autumn leaves. You can visit Ninomaru Garden, a place of scenic beauty, with just the Nagoya Castle admission fee, so be sure to stop by.

Nagoya Castle Motorcycle Parking Lot

Nagoya Castle has two parking lots: the “Main Gate Parking Lot” and the “Ninomaru Higashi Parking Lot.” Parking fee is 100 yen for 30 minutes. I tried to park my bike in the main gate parking lot,'' but the staff told me,You can’t park your bike here.” I was directed to the Ninomaru East Parking Lot,'' but I was in trouble because there wasn't enough space for motorcycles in theNinomaru East Parking Lot.” We would like to have more space for bikes, but we recommend arriving early.


This time, I went on a tour to Nagoya Castle. Nagoya Castle is a wonderful place where you can experience Japanese history and culture. There are many sights to see, such as the Honmaru Palace, the castle tower, and the Ninomaru Garden, a scenic spot. However, if you go by bike, be aware of parking issues. How was your bike trip to Nagoya Castle? Please give it a try!

The above was sent to you by _hiroyuki.ta. Look forward to the next tour!

*The English name for Nagoya Castle is “Nagoya Castle.”