Located near to Matsue Castle and designated as a traditional aesthetic zone, Shiomi Nawate is a 500m long street running located along the castle moat that is lined with traditional Japanese houses on one side and majestic pine trees on the other. There, you can find a finely preserved samurai residence, the former residence of Lafcadio Hearn and his memorial museum, a beautiful soba restaurant, and Meimei-an Tea House, which is the symbol of Matsue’s tea and wagashi culture. Most of these facilities offer great discounts for international visitors.
- One of the most beautiful streets of Japan
- The Samurai Residence (Buke Yashiki)
Located in the middle of Shiomi Nawate Street, this samurai residence (武家屋敷, buke yashiki) belonged to a middle-ranking samurai family. Surrounded by a nice garden, the house is well provides insight into how samurais lived.
- The former residence of Lafcadio Hearn and his memorial museum
More info in our article:
Lafcadio Hearn, aka Koizumi Yakumo
- Tanabe Art Museum
Built in 1979 by Kiyonori Kikutake, a famous Japanese architect belonging to the metabolist movement, Tanabe Art Museum (田部美術館, Tanabe Bijutsukan) contains many artifacts relating to the tea ceremony. Japanse website : www.tanabe-museum.or.jp
- Yakumo-an Restaurant
Located between the Tanabe Art Museum and the Samurai Residence,Yakumo-an (八雲庵) is a restaurant that specializes in soba, or buckwheat noodle.
- Meimei-an Tea House
Meimei-an Tea House stands on a low hill just off Shiomi Nawate Street and offers a superb view of the castle. Commissioned in 1779 by Lord Fumai, the 7th Lord of Matsue Castle and a noted patron of the tea ceremony, the tea house was tended to for many years by one of his closest retainers. Lord Fumai’s grave can be found nearby, inside the beautiful Gessho-ji Temple.
Moved to its present site in 1966 on the occasion of the 150th anniversary of the lord’s death, Meimei-an is renowned for its characteristic thickly thatched roof. Tea and wagashi (Japanese confectionery) are served in the adjoining tea room.
- Johoku Area, north of Matsue Castle
Located very close to Shiomi Nawate Street is also an area home to beautiful temples and shrine. This area is called Johoku (城北), for « North of the castle », and really worth a visit (map follows).
Fumon-in Temple (普門院), located a few steps away from Matsue History Museum, is home to yet another beautiful tea house named Kangetsu-an (観月庵).
Beautiful in autumn, Tawara Shrine (田原神社) is home to dozens of stone lanterns and komainu lion-dogs statues.
Shiomi Nawate Street is located near Matsue Castle, about 2.5 kilometers northwest of JR Matsue Station. About 30 min on foot. See itinerary on Google Map.
Please get off at bus stop 9 or 10 if you use the Lakeline bus. Please find the bus map and more details on Visit-Matsue.com.