The townscape of Kakunodate was created by Ashina Yoshihiro, who was the feudal lord of the area in 1620. It’s called the miniature Kyoto of the Michinoku region, supposedly because Satake Yoshichika, who became the feudal lord after the Ashina family was deposed, was from a family of Kyoto nobles and introduced much of Kyoto's culture. The weeping cherry trees lining the street of old samurai residences are also said to have started from the young cherry trees brought in from Kyoto back then.
Of the six residences open to the public, the Ishiguro house belonged to an upper-class samurai family that was responsible for inventory and financial management. Going through the Yakuimon (a style of gate architecture) gate, you will spot the main building with a front entrance topped with a bargeboard, also a side entrance, instantly showing that the Ishiguro family held a high position in the samurai hierarchy. As a plate by repairers was found on the gate that stated the year 1809, the main building is thought to have been built around the same time.
Guides will walk you through the house. From late April to May and June, the months of lush greenery, the samurai residence street is engulfed in cherry blossoms. Kakunodate Festival (three days from September 7 through to 9), an important intangible folk cultural property, is also worth a look. If you are visiting in autumn there’s the chance to see the fiery fall colors wrapping the samurai street in crimson. And then there are the ”winter cherry blossoms,” which is snow falling onto the weeping cherry trees in the quietude of winter.