the classic Kanazawa tourist spots
When Japanese people visit Kanazawa for sightseeing, we introduce you to the classic Kanazawa tourist spots!
Since you’ve traveled all the way from overseas to visit Kanazawa, please enjoy the charm of Kanazawa with the same quality as Japanese tourists.
The spots introduced below can all be visited in just one day, so why not incorporate them into your Kanazawa sightseeing plan?
Each tourist spot gives you the feeling of “I’ve really come to Kanazawa” and will become a memorable experience of “I visited Kanazawa!”
Higashi Chaya District
The old townscape spread along the banks of the Asano River, flowing at the foot of Mt. Utatsuyama, is often featured as one of the representative tourist spots of Kanazawa.
Even now, you can hear the sounds of shamisen and drums coming from teahouses with lit eaves. Please make sure to experience this unique atmosphere.
During the day, various shops are open, but at night they close, and the atmosphere becomes very quiet and changes dramatically.
A quintessential garden preserving the features of a stroll-style garden from the Edo period. It is counted as one of Japan’s Three Great Gardens, alongside Mito’s Kairakuen and Okayama’s Korakuen. There are numerous attractions, including Kotoji Lantern, Yanagi Bridge, and Kasumiga Pond.
Its appearance changes with each of the four seasons, making it a place to enjoy no matter how many times you visit.
Kanazawa Castle Park
Alongside Kenrokuen, it stands as a symbol of Kanazawa. Kanazawa Castle was the residence of the Maeda clan, who were the lords of Kaga.
The castle site has been designated as a national historic site. Just wandering around its vicinity reveals numerous concentrated tourist spots.
Here’s the translation:
Nagamachi Samurai District
This is the former residence of the Kaga Clan’s middle-ranking samurai. The yellowish-brown mud walls and the row house gates retain the atmosphere of that era. The “komogake,” which protects the mud walls from snow, has become a winter feature of Kanazawa.
At the Nomura residence, which is open to the public, you can get a glimpse of the samurai’s way of life.
A kitchen for the common people that has supported the lives of Kanazawa’s residents for over 300 years, and also served as the dining place for the Maeda family.
In approximately 180 storefronts, you can find a diverse range of items including fish from the Sea of Japan, local vegetables, fruits, pickles, fried foods, sweets, and even fresh flowers. Not only is it a place for shopping, but adjacent restaurants also offer the joy of dining.
Suzuki Daisetz Museum
This museum is dedicated to Daisetz Suzuki, a world-renowned Buddhist philosopher born in Kanazawa. Through his writings, photographs, and works, visitors can learn about Suzuki’s ideas and footsteps. This unique building was designed by the internationally acclaimed architect, Yoshiharu Tsukamoto.
Here’s the translation:
Nishi Chaya District
In the Nishi Chaya District, even today, traditional restaurants line the street, creating a charming corner with an old-world feel. If you walk through the area as evening approaches, the sounds of the shamisen can be heard, elegantly setting the mood for Kanazawa’s nightlife, a city known for its arts.
At “Hana no Yado”, located midway through the district, you can view the chaya-style architecture for free.
Known as a place for prayers related to Kanazawa Castle and serving as a secondary castle, it is a popular tourist spot also referred to as the “Ninja Temple” because of its various hidden features.
There are pitfalls, secret rooms, and stairs scattered throughout, making it maze-like in structure.