Top 10 Things to Do in Kanazawa, Ishikawa | FAST JAPAN
kanazawa things to do
Ishikawa

Top 10 Things to Do in Kanazawa, Ishikawa

Kanazawa (Ishikawa Prefecture) is one of the most beautiful and historical cities in Japan, it has preserved samurai and geisha districts. Here are top 10 best things to do in Kanazawa.

Kanazawa is one of the most beautiful and historical cities in Japan located in Ishikawa Prefecture. It has preserved samurai and geisha districts. The Kanazawa has become popular spot after the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line was started in March 2015. It takes only 2.5 hours from Tokyo to Kanazawa. The Kanazawa Loop Bus is very convenient to go sightseeing spots! Also you can buy JPY 500 one-day-pass, including Loop Bus, Kenrokuen Shuttle.

 

#1. Kenrokuen Garden

Kenrokuen Garden
Photo Credit: pref.ishikawa.jp

The Kenrokuen Garden (Japanese: 兼六園) is one of Japan’s three most beautiful traditional garden and the garden is connected to Kanazawa Castle Park. There are many trees, cherry blossoms and plum trees in the garden, therefore, you can enjoy every season.

Kenrokuen Garden

I particularly recommend you visit in spring and winter season because you can see beautiful plum flowers and cherry blossoms in spring, also you can see traditional Yukitsuri (snow ropes) and beautiful landscapes covered with snow in winter.

The Kenrokuen Garden is huge park! You should visit in the early morning before crowded. Don’t miss seeing this garden if you like Japanese gardens!

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Kenrokuen Garden

Address: 1 Kenrokumachi, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: It takes about 15 minutes bus ride from Kanazawa Station to Kenrokuen Garden stop

Opening Hours:
7:00am ~ 6:00pm ( March 1st – October 15th)
8:00am ~ 5:00pm (October 16th – the end of February)

Admission fee: 310 yen (Adult), 100  yen (Child)

Website: Kenrokuen Garden

 

#2. Kanazawa Castle Park

Kanazawa Castle Park

The Kanazawa castle was built over 400 years ago and the castle for the Lord Maeda Toshiie. But the original castle was burned down by fire, later also several times over the centuries.

Kanazawa Castle Park

This castle was based on traditional construction techniques and materials. Please check from here if you want to know about its technique. It is next to the Kenrokuen Garden  so it is nice walk and convenient. Also the Gyokuseninmaru Garden is beautiful.

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Kanazawa Castle Park

Address: 1-1 Marunouchi, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa Prefecture

Access: It takes about 15 minutes bus ride from Kanazawa Station to Kanazawa Castle Park stop

Opening Hours:
7:00am ~ 6:00pm (March 1st – October 15th)
8:00am ~ 5:00pm (October  16th –  the end of February)

Admission fee: free

Website: Kanazawa Castle Park

 

#3. Kanazawa Station

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Adam Kahtava@flickr

The Kanazawa station is JR Railway major station and unique architecture. This station is regarded as one of the most beautiful train stations in the world. You will find the impressive red wooden gate in front of the station, it’s called “Tsuzumi-mon” in Japanese. This wooden gate structure was designed to resemble a “Tsuzumi”. Tsuzumi is traditional Japanese instrument (hand drum), and “mon” means “gate”.

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Sébastien Bertrand@flickr

The Tsuzumi-mon Gate has become a symbol of Kanazawa station now. There is a glass dome, it looks like huge umbrella because the dome is offering visitors an umbrella as Kanazawa has many rainy days.

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Kanazawa Station

Address: 1-1 Kinoshinbo-machi, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Website: Kanazawa Station(Japanese)

 

#4. The 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa

The 21th Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa
Photo Credit: wikimedia

The 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa opened in 2004. This museum is unique architecture because round shape and all the walls are made of glass.

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Tomoaki INABA@flickr

There are many free spots in museum, including the most famous art “Swimming Pool”, but if you want to entry inside the pool requires paid admission fee. It’s next to Kenrokuen Garden, so easily reached and interesting museum if you are into modern art.

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The 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa

Address: 1-2-1 Hirosaka, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: It takes about 15 minutes bus ride from Kanazawa Station to Hirosaka stop

Opening Hours: 10:00am ~ 6:00pm
*Open until 20:00 on Friday and Saturday
*Closed onMonday

Admission fee: Changes depending on the exhibit

Website: The 21th Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa

 

#5. Myouryuji Temple (Ninja Temple)

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Kentaro Ohno@flickr

The Myouryuji Temple (Japanese: 妙立寺) was built by Maeda family for an emergency attack of Tokugawa Shogunate during the Edo Period. There are many temples in Kanazawa, but this temple is one of the interesting temples.

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Kentaro Ohno@flickr

There are variety of tricks, hidden traps, secret door, false door and labyrinth of corridors, it’s intricate structure. For that reason, you can enter only with guide tour. That’s why this temple is called Ninja Temple. It’s over 350 years old temple, you can enjoy ninja tricks when you visit this piece of history temple. Please don’t forget advance reservation.

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Myouryuji Temple (Ninja Temple)

Address: 1-2-12 Nomachi, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: Take a Kanazawa Loop Bus, and get off at Hirokoji bus stop, and then 5 mins walk to the temple

Opening Hours: 9:00am ~ 4:30pm

Admission: 1,000 yen (Adult), 700 yen (Child)

Website: Myouryuji Temple

 

#6. Higashi Chaya District

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Andrea Schaffer@flickr

There are 3 famous Chaya districts in Kanazawa and the Higashi Chaya district (Japanese: ひがし茶屋街) is the largest and most interesting district. Chaya (Japanese tea house) is traditional place of feasts and Japanese performances, Geisha/Geiko have been entertaining people by performing dances and playing Japanese traditional musical instruments (Koto and Shamisen) particularly in the Edo period, so you can feel the atmosphere.

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Haya_BS@flickr

Your must-try food in Higashi Chaya district is gold ice cream. Hakuichi sells classic ice cream cones, but the ice cream piled on top has been wrapped in gold leaf.

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Higashi Chaya District

Address: 1 Higashiyama, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: Take a Kanazawa Loop Bus, and get off at Hashibacho (Koban-mae) bus stop

Website: Higashi Chaya District

 

#7. Omicho Market

Omicho Market
Photo Credit: ohmicho-ichiba.com

The Omicho Market (Japanese: 近江町市場) has continued operating for 300 years since the Edo period, is a historically valuable market that has thrived along with changing time and the development of Kanazawa. This market referred to as “Kanazawa’s kitchen”, it’s still supporting the food culture of Kanazawa people. There are about 200 stores in the market such as fish stores, vegetable stores, grocery stores.

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: the.Firebottle@flickr

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: GanMed64@flickr

And also, the seafood is very fresh here.You can find good sushi and crab restaurants on the second floor. This is nice place if you want to feel locals’ market and eat fresh seafood.

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Omicho Market

Address: 51 Kamiomi-cho, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: 15 minutes walk from Kanazawa Station

Opening Hours: 9:00am ~ 6:00pm

Website: Omicho Market(Japanese)

 

#8. Nagamachi Bukeyashiki District

Nagamachi Bukeyashiki District
Photo Credit: wikimedia

The Nagamachi Bukeyashiki (Japanese: 長町武家屋敷) was samurai residential area. There are many houses surrounded by yellow earthen walls, lovely private Japanese style gardens and narrow street with stone-paved.

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: Tristan Ferne@flickr

The walls of the houses are covered with straw mats in winter season in order to protect the mud walls because it snows a lot in Kanazawa. Nomura samurai house is the only one which is open to the public and tourists can enter.

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Nagamachi Bukeyashiki District

Address: Nagamachi, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: It takes 15 minutes from Kanazawa station to Korinbo bus stop and walk 5 minutes

Admission fee: free (JPY 550 for Nomura Samurai House)

Website: Nagamachi Bukeyashiki District

 

#9. Kanazawa Noh Museum

Kanazawa Noh Museum
Photo Credit: wikimedia

Kanazawa Noh Museum offers its visitors various things such as Noh performance DVDs, exhibit of precious historical artifacts.

kanazawa things to do
Photo Credit: wikimedia

You can try to wear a costume of Kimono and Noh mask on the 3 floor. There are many different Noh masks. It’s close to the 21th Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Kanazawa. This museum is worth a visit if you interesting about traditional Japanese culture or Noh.

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Kanazawa Noh Museum

Address: 1-2-25 Hirosaka, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: It takes about 15 minutes bus ride from Kanazawa Station to Hirosaka stop

Opening Hours: 10:00am ~ 6:00pm
*Closed on Monday

Fees: JPY 300 (Adult),  free  (Under 18 years old)

Website:Kanazawa Noh Museum

 

#10. Kanazawa Umimirai Library

Kanazawa Umimirai Library
Photo Credit: lib.kanazawa.ishikawa.jp

The Kanazawa Umimirai Library was built in 2011 with enclosed by a white punching wall designed by K&H Architects. The wall is perforations with 6,000 small holes that allow natural light to enter the building.

 Kanazawa Umimirai Library
Photo Credit: lib.kanazawa.ishikawa.jp

It’s open atmosphere! This library is regarded as one of the most beautiful public Libraries in the world. This beautiful library become a new symbol of Kanazawa after this.

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Kanazawa Umimirai Library

Address: 1-1 Jyumachi, Kanazawa city, Ishikawa prefecture

Access: It takes 7 minutes bus ride from Kanazawa station to Nakahashi bus stop, and transfer to another bus (Hokutesu bus). It takes 20 minutes from Nakahashi bus stop to Kanazawa Umimirai Library-mae bus stop

Opening Hours: 10:00am ~ 7:00pm (Weekday), 10:00am ~ 5:00pm (Weekend)
*Closed on Wednesday

Fee: free

Website: Kanazawa Umimirai Library

 

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