(c)Yamagata Prefecture

Kajo Park

A vast park built on the site of the famous Yamagata Castle

Closest station

JR Yamagata Station


Around 10 minute walk from JR Yamagata Station


1-7 Kajocho, Yamagata City

Opening hours

5:00 – 22:00 (5:30 – 22:00 from November 1 to March 31)


Open year round



Great Stuff to See and Do!

Yamagata Castle was maintained by one of Japan’s most prominent feudal lords

photo:(c)Yamagata Prefecture

Located almost in the center of Yamagata City, Kajo Park is an urban park that was built on the site of Yamagata Castle.

Yoshiaki Mogami, one of the most prominent feudal lords during Japan’s Sengoku era (15th and 16th centuries), maintained Yamagata Castle, which is a flatland castle with the Honmaru main enclosure, Ninomaru second bailey, and Sannomaru third bailey surrounded by triple moats and earthen mounds. It is the largest castle in the Tohoku region, even larger than the World Heritage Site Himeji Castle in Hyogo Prefecture, and one of the largest castles in Japan. The moat, earthworks, and stone walls of the Ninomaru second bailey that remain today are thought to have been renovated by the later lords of the castle, the Torii clan.

Yamagata Castle was also called the “Castle of Fog (霞城, read as “Kasumiga-jo“)” because during a battle the castle was hidden from view by mist, and this became the origin for the park’s name. In 1986 it was designated as a national historic site, and in 2006 it was recognized as one of Japan’s 100 Famous Castles.

Restored areas and cultural facilities for a glimpse of life in the past

photo:(c)Yamagata Prefecture

In recent years, progress has been made on excavations and restoration work, and the charms of that long-gone era are slowly being revived. The Ninomaru Higashi Ote-mon gate, which can be considered to be the main entrance to Yamagata Castle, was restored in 1991 based on materials from the Edo period (1603 to 1868). From April 2024, a VR/AR recreation of Yamagata Castle from the mid-Edo period will also be available to the public within the park.

Kajo Park is also a famous spot for viewing cherry blossoms, with about 1,500 cherry blossom trees that are in full bloom in spring. In and around the park there are also a variety of cultural facilities, such as the Yamagata Museum of Art, the Yamagata Prefectural Museum, and the Yamagata City Local History Museum, which is a relocated building that has been designated as a national important cultural property. Two types of Yamagata Castle seals are also available for purchase at the Mogami Yoshiaki Historical Museum.