“Kura” (in Japanese 蔵 or 倉) means “warehouse” or “Storehouse”.
In traditional Japan, especially during the Edo Era, as most of buildings and urba/village structures were made of wood, fires were the bane of society by and large.
However well-protected a fire would consume a house or buildings and all its properties within minutes.
Hence a special building or warehouse was needed to protect goods and properties against such a catastrophe.
But erecting a storehouse solely made of concrete, stones and some metal cost a vast amount of silver and gold and only rich merchants and nobility could afford them. Even castles could not be built entirely of stone then.
The other day I rode a bus on the Ikumi Line/伊久身線 in Shimada City and discovered this kura at the very last stop at Ikumi/伊久美 (different Chinese characters!)!
It belonged to a resort shop that has ceased busines but it must have stood there for ages as there were some very people there owning tea fields!
It must have been intensively used by this former resort shop as it is superbly preserved.
Pity the access was severely limited by electric cables!
The owners are obviously afraid of unwelcome visitors in this lost rural area!
Big walls by Japanese standards!
Great back window, too!
Impossible to get inside!
Very solid stone foundation!
Barring an earthquake of unknown proportions, it is indestructible!
That is how far I could go!
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