Recommendation by Wabisavi
I must be honest, I never planned to go to 𝗠𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗼𝗸𝗮 in the first place, except for changing trains as I travelled out of Towada to Hiraizumi. Unfortunately, Hiraizumi was booked out, so I fell back onto the nearest town that offered budget accommodations. Actually, I enjoyed my stay in Morioka much more than I expected (disclaimer: the fact that I had a room all to myself with a bathtub to soak in, did play a part). The lively night district was a pleasure to walk through, even by day. Food was cheap and delicious. And because my stay coincided with the Incoronation Holiday, museums were free and there were festivals being held all over town. 🍁 𝗠𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗼𝗸𝗮 𝗖𝗮𝘀𝘁𝗹𝗲 𝗥𝘂𝗶𝗻𝘀 aka Iwate Park is on the list of 100 Famous Japanese Castles. I'm a castle geek (is there even such a thing?), so I have to admit I chose to visit Morioka for the sake of my stamp rally. Of the actual castle, there is almost nothing left, to the point it is hard to perceive you are in a castle at all. The park offers some nice scenery here and there, but it's more famous for its cherry blossoms and summer firefly trail than for its autumn colours. 📌 The 𝗠𝗼𝗿𝗶𝗼𝗸𝗮 𝗛𝗶𝘀𝘁𝗼𝗿𝘆 𝗮𝗻𝗱 𝗖𝘂𝗹𝘁𝘂𝗿𝗲 𝗠𝘂𝘀𝗲𝘂𝗺 is located right next to the castle (and is the place to get your Castle Stamp). It's rather small, and almost the entirety of the exhibits are lacking English explanations, so be warned. I loved the design though. There were various video materials to be watched, and my tired feet were very grateful for it. 📌 Iwate Bank Red Brick Building 📌 Takoboku Newlyweds House 📌 Morioka Hachimangu 🍙 Morioka Jajamen (udon noodles seasoned with miso paste) and Chitantan (egg soup). Don't be discouraged by the unpronounceable names, these dishes are delicious! 🍙 Wanko soba. A noodle eating challenge. It's fun, so don't be daunted and try it out.
Morioka, Iwate, Japan