Shikoku: Bansuiso

 Getting around the tourist sites in Matsuyama isn't too difficult; signage is pretty good if you stay on the right paths. So coming from the art museum, I just followed the arrows down the block as I headed toward my second stop, Bansuiso.
 From the art museum, it's a left turn, but I shot this sign from the other direction. You can probably tell that the English signage is as good as the Japanese signage when it comes to getting from A to B here.
 There are two tourist destinations side by side here, and the first you'll come to is the Saka no Ue no Kumo Museum. I skipped this one - it's a literary museum and I'm completely unfamiliar with the book (Saka no Ue no Kumo is a novel by Shiba Ryotaro). The book takes place in Edo-period Matsuyama and the museum provides a lot of information about the book, its setting, and characters. The building itself looked pretty cool, though!

Continuing on past the guarded gate is Bansuiso.
 Note that the pavement changes from asphalt to that tan sandy color. And there's nice landscaping. There's a grounds map nearby too, not that the property is really that large. Just follow the big driveway up to the main house.
 So, what is Bansuiso? It's a French style building constructed in 1922 which is open to the public for exploration.
 Upstairs, you can walk through the bedrooms, offices, and sitting rooms. After three years in a tiny Japanese apartment with pretty low ceilings, each room in this house is a castle of its own!
 Nothing says "rich" like a fancy staircase with a stained glass window.
 Downstairs, you can see some of the rooms used for entertaining, including the dark paneled dining room. The house is not yet 100 years old, but it was built in a classical style that makes it feel like it has been there for centuries.
 To the left of the house is a storehouse which is larger than any home I've ever lived in! And just beyond that is another building which has a coffee shop for those who'd like a small snack or drink before continuing on their way.
Bansuiso is open 9:00-18:00 (closed Mondays), and admission is 300 yen, which will let you explore essentially the entire gorgeous house.

You can walk to Saka no Ue no Kumo Museum and Bansuiso from the Ehime Prefectural Museum of Art in about 10-15 minutes. Alternately, Okaido tram stop is only two minutes from the museum; Bansuiso is about a five minute walk uphill.

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