Odawara, Japan

I decided to make a quick day trip to Odawara in June 2015 to visit the Odawara Castle and the serene coastline. I stopped at Paradise Cafe for lunch, which offered a lot of character, some cute horses out front, and an epic view of the region. I was able to snag a table outside on the deck (which is situated on a cliff – hence, better views of the area).

Odawara Castle was the first castle in Japan that I had the opportunity to visit, and it did not disappoint. It is well maintained, and they do allow you to go inside to see the museum and walk around at the top to get a better view of the surrounding areas. The original castle was built in 1495, but was reconstructed in 1960. It was also temporarily closed to be reinforced for earthquakes, but was opened again to the public in April 2016.

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