The main tower of Kumamoto Castle reopened to the public June 28 after undergoing repairs following a pair of massive earthquakes in 2016.
The samurai fortress, first completed in 1607, is a popular tourist destination in Kumamoto city. It was scheduled to reopen on April 26, but the plan was postponed due to the coronavirus pandemic.
The contents of an exhibition in the main tower, rebuilt in 1960, have been updated to provide information on the extensive quake damage and repair work, according to the city government.
The six-story tower is part of Kumamoto Castle Park. The top floor of the tower offers a view of the entire park, where reconstruction work is continuing, as well as the landscape of Kumamoto. An elevator was newly installed.
The earthquakes, measuring the highest reading of 7 on Japan’s seismic intensity scale, caused roof tiles and decorative ornaments to fall off and other structures in the park such as stone walls to crumble or completely collapse.
The restoration of the whole castle park is expected to be completed around 2037.
Kumamoto Castle Park was partially reopened around the time of the 2019 Rugby World Cup, for which Kumamoto hosted two games. (Kyodo)