Kyoto, Japan : Northwest Kyoto // Nijo-jo Shogun Castle

If you're following along with the Scripture Memory / Dwell Richly printable, here's the verse for week 15: 

Since everything God created is good, we should not reject any of it but receive it with thanks. 1 Timothy 4:4 (NLT) 

We are (surprisingly) only half-way into blogging about our Japan trip last November. So, back to the adventures...

Nijo-jo in Kyoto, Japan // via Jitney's Journeys

Welcome to Nijo-jo, a magnificent shogun castle is Northwest Kyoto! I was swooning as we walked through these ancient buildings with worn wood and charming architecture. This was one of our favorite historic sites to visit, mainly because (1) it was a shogun castle so there were several displays of armor and descriptions of how warriors prepared for battle along the tour and (2) we were fascinated by the nightingale floors. 

Built in 1603, the palace was created to demonstrate shogun Tokugawa Ieyasu's prestige and to demonstrate the demise of the emperor's power. He built in concealed chambers where bodyguards could keep watch and spring out at any moment's notice. Ieyasu also had the interior fitted with nightingale floors to detect any intruders, as the floors would 'squeak' or 'sing' like a nightingale.

You better believe JD and I were trying out our best ninja moves in that palace. But the floors just kept squeaking.

Nijo-Jo // Jitney's Journeys

Some of you may recognize this photo (imagine it in black and white) as our Christmas card picture from this year. 

Kyoto, Japan // Jitney's Journeys

We ran into another group of kids that wanted to practice their English with us. 

Nijo-jo in Kyoto, Japan // via Jitney's Journeys
Nijo-jo in Kyoto, Japan // via Jitney's Journeys
Nijo-jo in Kyoto, Japan // via Jitney's Journeys
Nijo-jo in Kyoto, Japan // via Jitney's Journeys

Throughout all of our Kyoto sightseeing adventures, we followed the walking tours described in the Lonely Planet Kyoto travel guide (with a few detours, of course).