On a hill and surrounded by lush flora sits the remains of Sannohe Castle, built as a fortification for the Nanbu around the turn of the 17th century. The fairy-tale natural scenery is a huge draw; fiery autumn hues merge into snowscapes; melting frosts reveal the budding blooms of 1,600 cherry blossom trees. Forget Kyoto; come here for sakura season sans crowds. After gawping at the scenery, nip across to the Sannohe Museum of Local History and Culture which is packed full of interesting artifacts about the area. Aside from being rich in archaeological sites, Sannohe has another famous legacy. Once home to Japan’s most famous children's author, Noboru Baba, who penned the much-loved Eleven Hungry Cats, the town pays homage to its literary legacy by painting cat murals on the sides of shops, homes and alleyways. You’ll find this unofficial mascot at every turn.
Shironoshita-34-29 Umenai, Sannohe, Sannohe-gun, Aomori