Goryokaku Tower and The Star of Hakodate

24 August 2016

I’ve visited many observatory decks around the world, but the view from Goryokaku Tower in Hakodate, Hokkaido remains one of the most unique I’ve ever seen.

So much so that when I recently saw a tourism poster of it at the station, I paused to admire how pretty it was and fondly recalled my own visit… ahem, two years ago… when realized I haven’t written about it!

Well, you must be new to my blog if you think I’m going to be all apologetic about the incredible lapse. “TWO YEARS?! People can give birth to two kids and be making their third in the time you took to write this post!” Nope, I’m going to be all nonchalant and steamroller on, flattening all your judgemental thoughts you’re shooting my way.

So yes, Goryokaku Tower.

The tower stands at just 107 meters

Don’t mind the height. The view’s what’s most impressive.

The tower overlooks Goryokaku, a star-shaped fort.

During spring source

During spring

During winter source

Winter illumination

TELL ME THIS ISN’T BREATHTAKING! (actually, don’t. I might get unreasonably angry and defensive lol)

I didn’t have the good fortune to visit during spring or winter. I visited during summer, which is possibly the most plain-looking of the lot – just lush greens – but all the same, I was enraptured by the view. I just decided to put the spring and winter photos first because they’re so pretty!

Summer time

It might be a blessing in disguise that I visited during summer. Had I visited during any of the other seasons, I might have spent 10 times as long in the tower taking photos and Fu would have hated this place forever lol.

Although the fort looks so pretty now, it saw some terrible times back in 1869.

All around the observatory floor are these glass panels that tell of the war that broke out at Goryokaku. There’s nothing like learning about history at the actual site itself so we read through all of them. I always tear up when I read things like these :( It’s also the reason why I cannot read/watch news or else I’ll just be crying all day. No it’s not an excuse why I don’t read news. Really.

Apart from Goryokaku, the city of Hakodate can also be seen.

But let’s be honest, this view is pretty typical and nothing to write home about, so let’s go back to the star, shall we? Pun intended.

Autumn foliage! source

Autumn foliage!

Here’s a shot of us and Goryokaku!

circa July 2014

These are the tickets!

Here are the pretty tickets!

Even though this is a place where you can be done in 15-20 minutes (or closer to an hour if you’re like me lol) I think it’s worth the money and trip here.

We travel to see sights that move our hearts, and this is definitely one of those that moved mine :)

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Offical website: English


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