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World Heritage / Gusuku Sites and Related Properties of the Kingdom of Ryukyu

Criteria: (ii) (iii) (vi) | Date of Inscription: 2000 | Location: Okinawa Prefecture | Justification for Inscription

UNESCO

Things to see

4 Gusukus and related properties

Nakijinjo
Nakijinjo
Katsurenjo
Katsurenjo
Zakimijo
Zakimijot
Nakagusukujo
Nakagusukujo
Sonohyan-utaki-ishimon
Sonohyan-utaki-ishimon
Seifautaki
Seifautaki
Tamaudun
Tamaudun
Shikinaen
Shikinaen
Nakijinjo
The Nakijinjo was the castle and center point of the Kitayama clan and from 1416 when Shohashi unified the islands to 1665 it was an official residence of those officials sent from the Kingdom of Ryukyu. The meandering lines the beautiful stone walls trace have been associated with the form of the Great Wall of China although the total length of the walls is just 1500 meters.
Katsurenjo
Katsurenjo was the castle of then lord Amawari, the last leader to stand against the kingdom prior to stability being achieved. The castle was originally constructed in the 12th century and is the oldest castle in Okinawa. In 1458 Amawari defeated lord Gosamaru of Nakagusuku Castle, at the time a senior official in the kingdom, and attacked Shuri Castle to seize the throne, albeit failing and dying in the process.
Zakimijo
Zakimijo was the castle constructed by the lord Gosamaru, who was one of the strongest lords during the 1420s. Known as an excellent designer of castles he is in part responsible for the castle's arch gate and the beautiful lines of its walls.
Nakagusukujo
Gosamaru, then lord of the Zakimijo, moved to Nakagusuku Castle on the king's orders to defend against Amawari - lord of the Katurenjo. However, following attack by the invading Amawari, Gosamaru committed suicide.
Sonohyan-utaki-ishimon
The Sonohyan-utaki-ishimon is a stone gate constructed by Shoshin, (reigned: 1477-1526). The grove behind it is a sacred place called Sonohyan-utaki and is the place the king prayed for safety on his way out of Shuri Castle on tours of the kingdom.
Seifautaki
The Seifautaki is located on the Chinen Peninsula and was said constructed by Amakiyo, one of the founding fathers of Ryukyu. It is one of the seven utaki (sacred places) and the most sacred site in Okinawa.
Tamaudun
The Tamaudun is the royal house graveyard and was first established in 1501. The front yard is paved with fragments of coral that adds to the solemnity of the area.
Shikinaen
The Shikinaen was the largest villa in the Kingdom of Ryukyu and was constructed in 1799 to be used for royalty to relax in as well as for hosting delegates from overseas. The villa also has a garden with a distinctive design found in the Ryukyu district during the modern age.
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