Kumamoto Castle is magnificent. Much
of the inside was closed because of the typhoon, but the scale
of the thing was awe-inspiring.
The castle took its final form around 1600. It eventually
had 49 turrets, 18 turret gates, and 29 smaller gates. It
survived until the late 1800s when the keep was attacked with
artillery and burned during the Satsuma Rebellion -- the last
gasp of the samurai class. Even then, the castle itself
was not taken.