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Spots in Kanazawa Area

  • Kenrokuen Garden
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Kenrokumachi 1
    Kenrokuen is a traditional Japanese-style garden in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture. The garden is said to have been first constructed in the mid-17th century in the outer bailey of Kanazawa Castle as a private garden for the lords of the Kaga Domain; it has been designated as a National Special Place of Scenic Beauty, and it ranks alongside the Kairakuen garden in Mito and the Korakuen garden in Okayama as one of the “Three Great Gardens of Japan.” Kenrokuen is renowned for its beautiful vistas, which make effective use of how nature changes with the seasons. For example, a special feature of the garden during the winter months is the Yuki-tsuri (ropes attached in a conical array to protect tree branches in a garden during the winter); another seasonal feature is the red and white plum blossom in the plum grove. In 2009 the Kenrokuen garden was awarded three stars (the maximum possible) in the Michelin Green Guide. During the peak tourist season, there is free admission at certain times, and the garden also hosts various special events, such as having the garden illuminated at night, etc.
  • Omicho Market
    Shopping
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Kamioumichou 50
    Omicho Market in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture has been nicknamed “Kanazawa’s Kitchen.” The Market has rows of retail shops selling food products (mainly fresh foods) and miscellaneous daily necessaries; it has underpinned Kanazawa’s gastronomic culture for nearly 300 years, since the Edo period. Fruit juices in which the straw is stuck straight into the fruit, and Kaisen Don (a bowl of rice topped with seafood) with plenty of delicious, fresh seafood toppings are particularly popular with tourists. Omicho Market is around 15 minutes’ walk from Kanazawa Station.
  • Higashi Chaya District
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Higashiyama
    The Chaya District is a usual sightseeing spot in Kanazawa, selected as a Japanese National Important Preservation Districts for Groups of Traditional Buildings, and once a bustling entertainment area certified by the Kaga clan. It is located on the east bank of the Asano River in Higashiyama, Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture. The old-fashioned town remains and along the main street and back alleys there are old town shops characterized by a lattice called “kimusuko”. Many of the stores currently are Japanese restaurants offering Japanese cuisine. In the evenings guests can hear the sound of the shamisen and taiko (Japanese traditional drums) coming from the houses, and feel elegant Japanese culture.
  • 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Hirosaka 1-2-1
    The 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa is housed in an imposing circular, glass-walled building, located in the center of Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture. The Museum is divided into an Exhibition Zone, for which there is an admission charge, and a Public Zone, with free admission. There are a wide variety of art installations and artworks everywhere, both indoors and outdoors. One particularly popular exhibit is Leandro Erlich’s “The Swimming Pool” (popularly known as “Leandro’s Pool”). From ground-level, it looks as though the people underneath are underwater; this experiential work creates opportunities for fascinating encounters between the people above and the people down below.
  • Keta Taisha Shrine
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    4.0
    104 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Hakuishi Jikemachi Cook 1-1
    The Keta Taisha Shrine is a Shinto shrine located in Jike Town, Hakui City. The Shrine, which is dedicated to the worship of the Shinto deity Okuninushi-no-mikoto, is said to have been built around 2,000 years ago. The sacred grove in which the Inner Shrine is situated is known as the “Forbidden Forest,” and has been designated as a National Natural Monument (note that there is no admission to the Forest).

    A lot of shrines have forested areas, but they’re often quite manicured. Keta Shrine was like it was made with the forest in mind. Some parts were downright Ghibli-ish, especially the torii that led...

  • Kanazawa Castle Park
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    4.0
    83 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Marunouchi 1-1
    In addition to the peripheral garden Kenrokuen, Kanazawa Castle Park is a treasure for the people of Ishikawa Prefecture. It is a center of history, and the castle—formerly the home of Kaga’s million-koku strong Maeda clan—is open to the public. There are innumerable sties to see, including Important National Cultural Properties like the Ishikawa Gate, Sanjikken Nagaya, and Tsurumaru Warehouse, as well as the grandeur of recent reconstructions of the Hishiyagura (tower), Gojikken Nagaya (gate), and Hashizume-mon Tsuzuki Yagura (tower). You can get a strong sense of Kaga’s history and culture by visiting there. Approximately 20 minutes by car via Kanazawa-Morimoto Interchange on the Hokuriku Expressway.

    The actual palace was never built again after It was destroyed. The only portion left was the look it area. You have to pay to go in. Not really worth it There is a free English guide. 30min to...

  • Myoryu-ji Temple
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    4.0
    1136 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Nomachi 1-2-12
    The Myoryu-ji Temple is a Nichiren Buddhist temple in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture. The Temple was founded by Maeda Toshitsune, the third lord of the Kaga Domain. Its complex defensive architecture, including many features designed to confuse attackers, led to it being nicknamed the “Ninja Temple.” The Temple interior is full of ingenious features such as offertory boxes and steps that hide pitfalls, hidden rooms, etc. What appears from the outside to be a two-storey building actually has four stories, with a total of 23 rooms. Tours can be booked in advance by telephone; it may be possible to book a place for the same day if there are any places vacant on that day’s tour.

    When we made the reservation for the tour (and you can only enter if you are joining the tour), we were informed that only tours in Japanese were conducted and that no translations were allowed, even...

  • Oyama-jinja Shrine
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    4.0
    557 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Oyamamachi 11-1
    You’ll find this shrine in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture. The founder of the Kaga Clan, Maeda Toshiie, and his lawful wife Matsu are enshrined here. It was constructed in 1873, before which time the spirits were enshrined together in Utasu Hachimangu (the present Utatsu Shrine) at the foot of the Mt. Utatsu. The three-level shrine gate was built in 1875 and combines Japanese, Chinese, and Western styles. It has been designated an Important Cultural Property. Vibrant glass fills the third level, giving it an otherworldly appearance when illuminated at night.

    This is a nice, quiet respite, right in the middle of the city. It wasn't on the top of my to-do list but I'm glad I came. There is a sense of serenity and makes a good pit stop.

  • Nishi Chaya District
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Nomachi
    This area once flourished as a licensed chaya (traditional place of feasts and entertainment by geisha) district of the Kaga Clan and is still an area with Japanese restaurants and geisha houses lining the streets. It is located on the west side of “Saigawa River” in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture. The chaya style town houses with impressive lattices line the streets, and the atmosphere of traditional pleasure quarters refusing first-time customers without introduction remains. It is the town where the Taisho period novelist Seijiro Shimada, who wrote the best-selling novel “On the Ground” at the age of 20, spent his childhood. In the “Nishi-Chaya Museum,” visitors can see material on Seijiro Shimada and a reproduction of a Japanese style room of chaya.
  • D.T. Suzuki Museum
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Hondamachi 3-4-20
    The D.T. Suzuki Museum in Kanazawa was opened as a place for people to learn about D.T. Suzuki, a renowned Buddhist scholar who was born in Kanazawa, and also as a place for self-reflection. The Museum consists of three halls (the Vestibule, Exhibition Space and Contemplative Space, which are linked by corridors) and three gardens (the Vestibule Garden, Water Mirror Garden, and Roji Garden). The scene of the Contemplative Space building reflected in the shallow pool of water in the Water Mirror Garden is highly photogenic, and has appeared in many different media.
  • Kanazawa Phonograph Museum
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    4.5
    73 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Owarichou 2-11-21
    This museum located in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture is dedicated to the subject of phonographs. The museum houses approximately 600 phonographs and 30,000 78 rpm records collected since the mid 1970s-mid 1980s, making it one of the largest museums of its kind in Japan. Three times a day, records are played on different phonographs selected from the collection so that visitors can hear the difference in the sound each produces. The phonographs used range from the wax cylinder phonograph invented by Thomas Edison to a Credenza, which is sometimes called the king of phonographs. The museum's beautiful exterior evokes romanticism for the Taisho era.

    As it was a wet day we looked for something indoors. This is a small museum. The phonograph demonstration (11am / 2pm /4pm) alone was worth the visit.

  • Ishikawa Prefectural Museum of Traditional Arts and Crafts
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Kenrokumachi 1-1
    The Ishikawa Prefectural Museum of Traditional Arts and Crafts is dedicated to the collection of examples of Ishikawa’s handicraft traditions. The Museum is located next to the Kenroku-en garden (a popular tourist attraction), which can be accessed directly from the Museum’s West Entrance. Inside the Museum there are displays on 36 different traditional crafts, 10 of which are METI-designated Traditional Craft Industries. On Saturdays and Sundays, visitors can see demonstrations of various traditional crafts by expert craftspeople. The Museum also holds pottery-making experience activities and workshops of various kinds. The Museum is situated around 15 minutes’ drive from JR Kanazawa Station.
  • Ochaya Shima (National Important Cultural Property )
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    4.0
    270 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Higashiyama 1-13-21
    Kanazawa Higashi-rou Shima was built in 1820 in the Kanazawa Higashi Chaya District, and the building to this day hasn’t been altered and remains as it was during the Edo period. It is highly valuable as cultural heritage and has been designated as an Important Cultural Property of Japan. The guest rooms on the second floor are structured for the purpose of merrymaking: if the guests sit with their backs to the alcove, the front becomes an anteroom, and it is designed that one can enjoy dancing and artistic accompaniment if the fusuma (Japanese sliding screens) are opened. You can have traditional Kanazawa sweets together with green tea in the tearoom, “Kanson-an”.

    Very nice place to visit. When we were there, it rained a great deal so that made us decide to go in. Amazing to see how an okaya used to be, surprised to find out how tiny and flimsy it all is. I...

  • Kaikaro Teahouse
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Higashiyama 1-14-8
    Kaikaro while being located in the middle of Kanazawa Higashi Chaya District, it is the biggest tea house in Kanazawa. In the evening, it maintains the custom of “Ichigensan Okotowari” (meaning to “refuse first-time customers”), but during the day it is possible to take a tour of the building. You can enjoy the vermillion lacquered walls and furnishings which are unique to Kanazawa’s teahouses. Again, at the Kaikaro Cafe where they are particular about their ingredients, you can taste high quality sweets. The “Enyukai” event is held several times a year—you can experience tea house entertainment and Kaga cuisine at this event which is also open to the general public.
  • Janome Zushi (flagship store)
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Katamachi 1-1-12
    Janome Zushi is a long-established sushi restaurant in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture that has been operating since around 1930. Besides providing fresh seafood toppings, Janome Zushi also takes great pains over the “Shari” rice used to make the sushi; a blend of rice varieties grown locally in Ishikawa Prefecture is cooked using underground water from Mt. Haku, creating a delicious flavor and ensuring that the rice does not become unpleasantly hard even when it cools down. The Kutani-ware tableware used at Janome Zushi is very attractive to look at, too. The Janome Zushi flagship store is located close to the Kenroku-en garden and the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art; this tranquil restaurant near a bustling area is a great place to stop by, whether you are in Kanazawa as a tourist or on business.
  • Izakaya-kappo Tamura
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    3.5
    32 Reviews
    Gourmet / Alcohol
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Namikimachi 2-18
    Izakaya-kappo Tamura is a Kappo-izakaya (Japanese-style bar-restaurant) in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture. Patrons can enjoy delicious fresh fish and Daiginjo (top-quality sake) at reasonable prices while enjoying the ambience of the historic city of Kanazawa. Besides offering classic Hokuriku region specialties such as Rosy Sea-bass and crab, Izakaya-kappo Tamura has also attracted considerable attention with its original recipes, including hearty Yellowtail Rolls, etc. Izakaya-kappo Tamura is a favorite with celebrities in the arts and entertainment fields etc., and has many fans not only within Ishikawa Prefecture but also in other parts of Japan and even overseas. The crab used in the restaurant's popular Crab Shabu-shabu hotpot comes straight from the restaurant's fishtanks before being prepared, making it ultra-fresh. Crab Shabu-shabu is available all year round, but as the restaurant sometimes has difficulty getting deliveries of fresh crab during periods of bad weather, it is advisable to book ahead two days in advance.

    Great experience at Tamura. We are mother and father with two sons (13 and 18) that had a great meal and experience on 2. of October. We just by chance walked into this place - and had a really good...

  • Ishikawa Prefectural Noh Theater (Nogakudo)
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    4.5
    17 Reviews
    Leisure / Hobbies
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Ishibiki 4-18-3
    The Ishikawa Prefectural Noh Theater (Nogakudo) was opened in Kanazawa City in 1972 as a facility for the preservation, transmission and advancement of Ishikawa Prefecture’s Noh drama tradition; it was Japan’s first independent public Noh theater. The Theater’s Noh stage was relocated here from the Kanazawa Noh Theatre, having originally been constructed in 1932; reflecting its great age, it exudes a subtle sense of calm and style. Noh, Kyogen and Shimai (selected highlights from Noh dramas) performances are held every month except August.

    兼六園を散歩しているときに見つけて、入ってみました。すると、ちょうどこれから能楽体験が始まるので、どうですかと聞かれたので参加しました。(通常は予約が必要のようです。)グループに分かれて先生の説明の後に、実際に楽器(小鼓と大鼓)を叩きます。小鼓を叩くにはコツが必要です。2、3回叩いただけで手が痛くなりましたが、新鮮な体験でした。 約1時間後、別のホールに移動して、専門家の方による狂言と能楽を鑑...

  • Ishikawa Prefectural Products Center
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    4.0
    82 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Kenrokumachi 2-20
    Located adjacent to the Kenroku-en garden (one of the “Three Great Gardens of Japan”), the Ishikawa Prefectural Products Center is a commercial facility that brings together a wide range of local specialty products from Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture under one roof. Inside the Center, there is an impressive selection of famous and long-established confectionery brands, Tsukudani (boiled foods in sweetened soy sauce), traditional handicraft products, etc. The Center also offers experiential activities that enable visitors to experience some of Ishikawa’s traditional crafts and skills, such as traditional Japanese confectionery making, decorating Kaga Hachiman Okiagari dolls, etc. The gallery in the B1 level has displays on the Kaga Hyaku-man-goku confectionery-making tradition and Asano Taiko, a drum-maker that originally made drums for the lords of the Kaga Domain.

    I’d abandoned my husband to go gift shopping before leaving Japan so found here online. It reported to have several floors of gifts but in reality there’s only one really. Probably 65% food which...

  • Gold Leaf Sakuda (Sakuda Gold & Silver Leaf Crafts)
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    4.5
    49 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Kanazawashi Higashiyama 1-3-27
    Gold Leaf Sakuda is a long-established gold leaf workshop (with its own shop) that has been using traditional techniques to make beautiful, intricate gold-leaf products since 1919. Gold leaf making is a traditional craft in Kanazawa City, Ishikawa Prefecture, with 99% of all gold leaf produced in Japan being made in Kanazawa. Located around 100 meters from the famous Higashi Chaya-gai district, Gold Leaf Sakuda’s flagship store offers workshop tours and golf leaf application experience activities, enabling visitors to see for themselves the complex techniques used in golf leaf production. Gold Leaf Sakuda also has a wide range of souvenir gifts on sale, including not just handicraft items but also glassware and cosmetics products, etc.

    This place is a little gem, we went here for a look and were greated with a cup of gold leaf tea and an offer to go out the back to learn the process of gold leafing (for free and in English). It is...

  • Myojo-ji Temple
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    4.0
    37 Reviews
    Travel / Tourism
    Ishikawa Pref. Hakuishi Takidanimachi Yo -1
    Myojo-ji Temple in Hakui City, Ishikawa Prefecture is the head temple of the Nichiren school of Buddhism in the Hokuriku region; it is the largest temple in Northern Ishikawa (the region that was formerly known as Noto Province). Ten of the buildings within the temple precincts have been designated as National Important Cultural Properties; unusually, three of these buildings—the Soshi-do hall, Hon-do hall and Sanko-do hall—are laid out in a row, a practice which was unique to the Nichiren school; the Myojo-ji Temple is the only temple in Japan where the buildings arranged in this way have retained their original appearance. The Myojo-ji Temple also has the only five-storeyed pagoda in the Hokuriku region; built on top of a small hill, it has become a famous symbol of the Temple.

    If you like Ghibli movie like locations, you will love this temple. The vegetation is amazing, ancient bending trees over overgrown shrines and tombstones. Beautiful period wooden buildings and...

Ishikawa Main Areas

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Long, thin Ishikawa prefecture runs along the Sea of Japan up into Noto Peninsula. Highlights of the seaside towns lining the west coast include Kanazawa, often described as a "Little Kyoto" thanks to its old wooden tea houses and geisha culture as well as its picturesque Japanese garden, Kenroku-en.

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