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Nijo Jinya is a private house about 1 km from Nijo Castle in Kyoto. Unfortunately pictures were not allowed inside, but it was really cool!

Nijo Jinya was an inn for feudal lords visiting Nijo Castle. It had spaces for tea ceremonies and kabuki theatre to entertain the guests.

Very important people visited the inn. And these very important people had enemies who wanted to kill them. So the most interesting parts of the house were the anti-crime measures, which included:
-a “skylight” that actually was an eavesdropping compartment through which the guards could listed to conversations and then drop on top of someone if necessary
-a hidden staircase for someone to accidentally fall through
-hallways with ceilings low enough that a samurai wouldn’t be able to take his sword out of its sheath
-a bazillion secret closets, compartments, and rooms to hide in

Besides all the cool features of the house, it was fascinating to see an original home that was that old. It has been passed down through 13 generations of the same family and the family still lives in part of the house today.

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