After a breakfast, included in the cost at the hotel, a short walk to Sannomiya Station and we boarded the 10.30 am train for the 1 hour ride to the City of Himeji at a cost of 1400 yen ( 11.64 euro ) each. On arrival at Himeji City there are many lockers to leave your case in for 600 yen (5 euro) for the day.
Himeji Castle was built at the beginning of the 17th Century, when Japan's unique castle architectural heritage had reached its peak. It was the first site in Japan to be registered as a UNESCO Wold Heritage Site, in 1993. It was also designated a National Treasure in 1951. It is called Hakuro-jo (White Heron Castle) because of its brilliant white exterior, and is thought to resemble a white Heron taking flight. My personal reason for visiting was that as an avid film buff I knew that the castle has been used in the making of many of the Japanese warlord films and that samurai films were also made with the castle as the main location.
Entry to the castle is set at 1,000 Yen (8.50 euro) for Adults but for an extra 40 yen ( 33 cents) a combined ticket will get you entry to Ko-koen Gardens which although not wonderful in January for the money is well worth the entry fee and the time to get round whereas in the spring and summer it would be magnificent especially with all the cherry blossom as pictures within depict.
There is a very good Himeji City guide book available which will point out many other sights to see and places to visit but this time we only had half a day before our journey to Osaka for the last leg of our Japanese visit so after a very good buffet meal it was back on the train.