Attractions (Kakuda's Attractions)
This temple, located in the western Nishine area of Kakuda City. The building is hailed not only for its cultural significance, but it is also known as the oldest surviving wooden structure in Miyagi Prefecture. The structure is believed to have been built by the wife of Shuei Fujiwara in 1177, and it is one of only seven Amidado Halls in Japan. The wooden statue of Buddha that is found within the temple stands nearly three meters high and was made in 1178. The temple itself, though relatively small, is filled with pieces of Japan's past and present and is surrounded by beautiful scenery. It is a must-see site for any tourist interested in the history and culture of the Japanese people.
(Information taken from Welcome to Kakuda City pamphlet and Kozoji Temple Brochure)
Kakuda Space Center (JAXA)
The Kakuda Space Center (KSPC) conducts research and development in rocket engines. Since the Kakuda Space Propulsion Laboratory merged with the Kakuda Propulsion Center, the KSPC has played an important role in improving rocket engines. The main mission of the KSPC is the development and testing of liquid-fuel rocket engines to be installed in rockets such as the H-IIA.
Kakuda Historical Library
This building, once used as a residence for a member of the Ujiie Family (one of the three most powerful families in Kakuda), has been entirely restored as a city historical library. It is here that archaeological and historical documents of Kakuda are stored. The original building was constructed over a period of time starting in the early Meiji Era and finally completed during the Taisho Era. On library grounds are also a white-walled storehouse and a beautiful, formal Japanese garden.
(Information taken from Kakuda Historical Library brochure and Welcome to Kakuda City pamphlet)
Visiting beautiful Mt. Shiho involves a relatively short drive and a small, scenic hike up to the very top of the mountain. Visitors' efforts to summit the top are greatly rewarded when they reach their destination. A two-story tower provides an all-around, clear view of Kakuda City, surrounding towns, the Abukuma River, and the Pacific Ocean. The mountains and greenery that surround the site are beyond imagination.
Visitors wishing to enjoy lunch or a rest break at Mt. Shiho can make use of a small pavilion located near the tower. Children may also enjoy the small playground that accompanies the pavilion.
Kakuda Space Center, Daiyama Park
Kakuda's centrally-located Daiyama Park is home to an educational space center complete with a full-sized model of an H-II Rocket. The center, designed to be both a symbol for the city of Kakuda and a facility to arouse in local children an interest in space exploration, consists of the rocket, an observation tower, and a space exhibition hall.
The exhibition hall, located on the first floor of the Space Tower, gives viewers a chance to understand the limitlessness of space exploration, the history of space exploration, and the future of space travel through displays, videos, pictures, and miniature models.
Most guests, whether Japanese or foreign, will find the center intriguing for more than its educational programs. Standing next to the rocket is the Space Tower, a building designed to look like a launch pad. On the upper floors of the Space Tower is a two story observation deck from which viewers can enjoy a panoramic sight of Kakuda. Telescopes are also available and visitors can pay a small fee to use them. These allow the viewer to see Kakuda and its surrounding mountains for two minutes through a high-powered lens from an elevation of 40.4 meters. Those not wishing to look through the telescopes can still enjoy a great sight of Kakuda and an up-close shot of the H-II Rocket model located directly beside the Space Tower.
The rocket model itself is made of 25mm-thick copper sheets, measures 49 meters in height and 4 meters in diameter, and weighs 130 metric tons.
(Information taken from Kakuda City Cosmohouse flier)