April in Tochigi is like most of Japan, Cherry Blossom time and Nogi Shrine is one of the lovely viewing spots in this area.
Despite the on and off rain, I went to Nogi shrine to see the Sakura.
Nogi shrine is in the Nishinasuno area and is one of Tochigi prefectures historical sites.
At the back of the shrine is a beautiful lake and the second house of General Maresuke Nogi.
The lake is surrounded by Cherry and other blossom trees and is beautiful in springtime, actually it’s beautiful all year round.
The woods surrounding the shrine have pathways throughout and its a very pleasant afternoon walking around there..
General Maresuke Nogi was one of the heroes of the Russian-Japanese war 1904-5, although he’s mostly remembered for his (and his wife’s) ritualistic suicide following the death of the Emperor Meiji in 1912. This is known as is second house and I gather he spent some of his later years here. The buildings are beautiful and there are some thatched outbuildings, I’m guessing its probably a restoration, rather than the original, because it is in such lovely condition.
The house in the back of the lake was open to the public and I was able to see inside this beautiful, historical, traditional home with its central hearth and tatami rooms..
The day I visited the cherry blossoms were really beautiful, but the rain was not making for great viewing – or photos! At the same time there were a couple trying to get their wedding photos taking place at the shrine, the bride and groom desperately trying to get photos despite the rain. (Which maybe was why the house was open?)