- 5 min read

A Special Trip in Odawara

Castle stay, mindfulness, and gastronomy

Odawara is a captivating coastal city nestled along Sagami Bay on the Tokaido Line, just a 30-minute Shinkansen bullet train ride from Tokyo Station.

Boasting the iconic Odawara Castle, the city serves as a gateway to the renowned Hakone hot springs resort area and the stunning Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park, offering visitors a unique and memorable stay. Towards the western corner of Kanagawa Prefecture, Odawara is not only rich in cultural heritage but also offers picturesque surroundings, fresh seafood, and local cuisine.

Embrace the charm of Odawara, along Japan’s Golden Route, where tradition and modernity converge for an unforgettable experience.

Golden Route

The Golden Route is a scenic journey that takes you through the iconic cities and landmarks of Japan, including Tokyo, Mt. Fuji, Nagoya, Kyoto, and Osaka. Odawara is proudly located on a part of this famous route. Tokyo, being the largest city and the capital of Japan, leads the way, followed by other renowned cities that collectively showcase the diverse and must-visit destinations in Japan. Odawara is a noteworthy city that contributes to the richness and allure of Japan's cultural and historical landscape.

Odawara Castle Stay

Odawara Castle was constructed in the 15th century by Daimyo (feudal lord) Hojo Soun and faced demolition by the Meiji government in the 19th century. However, it underwent reconstruction in 1960, and today, the five-story castle proudly stands atop a hill, providing a commanding view of Odawara. Once a significant seat of power for a considerable portion of central Japan, including present-day Tokyo, Odawara Castle was the stronghold of the Hojo Clan during the Sengoku Period, also known as the "Warring States period" in Japanese history.

Odawara Castle holds historical significance as the closest castle to Tokyo and has been the backdrop for numerous pivotal battles involving renowned figures from Japanese history. Visitors can immerse themselves in this rich history by opting for a castle stay here in Odawara, which allows them to absorb the historical charm and experience the city’s unique past.

During the Castle Stay experience, tourists have the opportunity to don armor and helmets reminiscent of ancient warriors and then climb to the top of the castle tower and pretend to be the lord of the castle for the day. From there, visitors can enjoy a stunning panoramic view of the castle town below.

In addition to exploring the castle, tourists can also participate in the popular ninja show experience. As the grand finale, tourists can extend their adventure by staying overnight in the castle.

At dinner and breakfast, tourists can enjoy delectable seafood and local cuisine from Odawara in an old Japanese-style house.


Photo: ©Odawara Art Foundation

For a more luxurious and serene experience, consider taking a leisurely tour of the Enoura Observatory and spending the night at a 5-star hotel, fostering a tranquil state of mind.

Photo: ©Odawara Art Foundation

Hiroshi Sugimoto’s Enoura Observatory, meticulously planned and executed over two decades, stands as a distinctive example of land art. The expansive grounds boast a gallery, outdoor stages, a tea house, and more, providing a serene backdrop for both ancient and modern works of art.

During the Enoura Observatory tour, visitors have the opportunity to tour around the facilities, participate in Zen meditation, and enjoy special performances of ancient Japanese court music.

Upon request, tourists have the option to stay at a top-notch hotel that prioritizes exceptional hospitality. Choose between the opulent five-star Hilton Odawara Resort & Spa or the intimate yet luxurious Enoura Retreat Rimon, both offering unparalleled healing experiences. Unwind and rejuvenate in the soothing hot springs, which provide perfect remedies for any travel fatigue.


At Odawara Fishing Port, a diverse array of seafood is brought in daily, providing a delightful opportunity for seafood enthusiasts to savor the freshest catches. Odawara is a paradise for sushi and seafood lovers, and it is a must-visit destination. Tourists can experience early morning fishing at Sagami Bay, followed by a sumptuous meal that includes rice, flavorful miso soup, and an abundance of freshly caught fish. Tourists have the option of having dishes prepared using the fish they caught, which adds an extra layer of culinary pleasure to the experience.

Plan your visit to Odawara

Odawara is a charming city that boasts a rich blend of history, culture, nature, and delicious cuisine. Regarded as a must-visit destination in Japan, Odawara offers a unique and authentic Japanese experience that should not be missed during your visit to the country. Odawara Guide provides detailed information on tour plans, featuring landmarks, local eateries, accommodations, tours, and more. Embark on a special trip to Odawara, where the essence of Japanese culture and tradition awaits, promising an enriching and memorable experience.

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