Touring Kanazawa Recommended Tourist Route


Touring Kanazawa

Recommended Tourist Route

Kanazawa retains the atmosphere of a castle town and boasts a collection of topical tourist spots of international interest. Here we describe the recommended tourist route for the major tourist experiences you should try at least once if you come to Kanazawa, including strolling the streets, shopping, and good food. You can get around Kanazawa efficiently in a day. All you need is about five hours.



When you alight at Kanazawa Station you will be greeted by the Motenashi Dome, completed in 2005 from feature glass. Hop on a bus and head for our first destination, Higashi Chayagai District.



One of Kanazawa’s three chaya districts, with their charming tea houses, the streets are lined
with buildings housing vendors of gold leaf and traditional sweets, souvenir shops selling cute Kanazawa ornaments, and classy cafés. Don’t miss Shima, the only tea house structure in Japan to be designated a nationally Important Cultural Property. Built in 1820, the tea house has been immaculately preserved in its original form. As it was built to house the general arts of singing, music and dancing, it is unique for the fact that its upper storey guest rooms have no cupboards or dividing walls.



Kenrokuen is one of Japan’s three most famous gardens. It is a chisen kaiyu, ‘strolling pond’, style garden typical of the Edo period and has its origins as the clan residence constructed in the outer blocks of Kanazawa Castle by the Kaga clan. Its charm transforms with the seasons, offering different views with the changing seasons. A must see is the Kotoji stone lantern for which the garden is known. After a Address: leisurely stroll around the garden, enjoy a snack at one of the tea shops lining the exit.

Address: 1-4 Kenroku-machi, Kanazawa-shi


Address: 1-1 Marunouchi, Kanazawa-shi


The huge park was created around the restored ruins of Kanazawa Castle, which was the stronghold of the Million Koku of Kaga, dating from when Maeda Toshiie moved into the castle in the Edo period. The symbol of Kanazawa Castle, the famous Ishikawamon Gate, is designated a nationally Important Cultural Property. In spring the park is also very popular as a famous spot for cherry blossom viewing.



The concept of the Kanazawa 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, which is a gallery that has many fans around Japan, was for it to be open to the town and in essence a ‘park- like art gallery’. Leandro Erlich’s Swimming Pool is one popular spot in which a boundary created by the surface of a pool becomes a natural source of interaction.

Address: 1-2-1 Hirosaka,Kanazawa-shi



For our final stop we go to the Ohmicho Markets, which are popular with tourists. This is the kitchen of the people of Kanazawa, where shoppers can buy fresh seafood products and Kaga vegetables. Across the 2.8 hectare site there are 170 or so shops, including stores selling fresh food and commercial goods, and food and beverage outlets. Shop and taste test as you are surrounded by in a swirl of energetic cries of ‘It’s fresh!’, or ‘It’s cheap!’, and being on the coast of the Japan Sea, do not go past the seafood. Sushi eaten at the markets is unforgettable.

Address: 50 Kami Ohmicho, Kanazawa- shi

The circuit or shuttle bus from Ohmicho Markets to Kanazawa Station takes about five minutes. Pop into the souvenir stores at Kanazawa Station to buy famous local sweets, seafood products, or gold leaf craft items. You can savour the delights of Kanazawa in just one day.

【Tourist Hot Spot in NAGANO】MATSUMOTO


A castle town with over 400 years of history

Situated in the heart of Nagano Prefecture, Matsumoto City is a popular destination for many, known as a castle town with a long history and the gateway to the northern Alps.
Matsumoto Castle, the city’s star attraction and a national treasure, is a famous tourist spot, but the city is also known for buildings constructed in the downtown districts during the Meiji and Showa eras, their mix of western and Japanese influence lending the area a touch of nostalgia. Matsumoto City is also known for its natural springs, and is dotted with a series of wells.

Matsumoto Castle


©Nagano Prefecture   ©JNTO

Matsumoto Castle was built in the late 1500’s at the end of Japan’s warring period, and makes for a striking sight. The donjon (castle keep) is a national treasure, and the castle remains are designated as a national historical landmark. Visitors can view the interior of the donjon, recreated to represent the time of its construction, and you can see downtown Matsumoto City and even parts of the northern Alps from its highest levels.


Handmade Soba Making


©Utsukusigaharaonsen Ryokan Kyoudo Kumiai

Premium soba, or buckwheat in English, comes from land that is high in elevation, is prone to fog, and where the daylight hours are short. Nagano Prefecture provides the perfect growing conditions for soba and is famous for its soba noodles. Particularly noteworthy are Norikura and Nagawa, with Nagawa being home to the famous traditional Toujisoba. Visitors can also learn to make soba noodles by hand at the Fureai Yamabe-kan.




©Matsumoto City   ©JNTO

A beautiful landscape in the northern Alps at 1,500m above sea level, Kamikochi is visited by many tourists from April through to November outside the winter months. Walking paths running 10km from Taisho Lake to Yokoo by the Azusa River provide a view of beautiful scenery year round.


The Matsumoto Castle Town Wells


©Matsumoto City

There are many wells in this castle town. These wells provide access to the spring waters that flow down from the Utsukushigahara Highlands, and are places of rest and refreshment for the city’s residents and visitors. The wells in the city are an urban oasis, and a great place to have a drink as you explore the city.


The Norikura Highlands


©Matsumoto City   ©JNTO

The Norikura Highlands are a collection of lands ranging 1,200m to 1,800m above sea level along the eastern reaches of Mt. Norikura. Attractions include the Ichinose Gardens, forests and lakes, marshes, waterfalls, autumn foliage, four hot springs with their own unique waters, flowers, and more.

Nakamachi Street


©Matsumoto City   ©JNTO

Located in the center of Nagano Prefecture, Matsumoto City has long prospered as a castle town and hub of commerce. Nakamachi Street in the heart of the city is home to heritage white-walled and latticed clay wall buildings. This area is a place for shopping, with goods stores, folk craft stores, sweets shops, restaurants, and more.




Three world-class resorts in one

Niseko is a winter wonderland composed of 38 Gondolas connected by 61 pistes with 15 metres of powder snow brought by Northwest winds straight from Siberia. These resorts are linked by ski lifts and shuttle buses via a single pass, making it a prized location for international skiers, including 10,000 Australian skiers last year. This area has a unique international and Japanese feel, with lodgings
and other facilities catering for tourists, including luxury apartments and services available in English.

The Niseko Grand Hirafu Ski Resort is geared for all the needs of overseas skiers, including equipment rental, convenience stores and a pub, as well as ski lessons and tours in English.

The Niseko Village Ski Resort is a luxurious four season resort with sweeping panoramas of the dormant volcano, Mount Yotei.

The various slopes even have memorable names such as “Cruiser” and “Pure Magic” attached to them.

Niseko An’nupuri, which includes the smaller ski area of Hanazono, has 13 mostly wide runs aimed at beginners, and is open from December until May.


Niseko Grand Hirafu Ski Resort

Number of lifts (Incl. gondolas): 16
Number of runs: 30
Longest run: 5600m
Maximum elevation: 1200m
Steepest slope: 40 degrees
Terrain: Beginner 30%, Intermediate 38%, Advanced 32% Night skiing: Yes, until 20:30
Season: Late November until early May
Other: Park facilities include waves, banks and rails.

Niseko Village Ski Resort

Number of lifts (Incl. gondolas): 7
Number of runs: 27
Longest run: 5000m
Maximum elevation: 1029m
Steepest slope: 35 degrees
Terrain: Beginner 36%, Intermediate 32%, Advanced 32%
Night skiing: Yes, until 21:00
Season: Late November until early May
Other: Park facilities include tables, kickers and rails.

Niseko An’nupuri Ski Resort

Number of lifts (Incl. gondolas): 6
Number of runs: 13
Longest run: 4000m
Maximum elevation: 1156m
Steepest slope: 34 degrees
Terrain: Beginner 30%, Intermediate 40%, Advanced 30%
Night skiing: Yes, until 21:00
Season: Early December until early May
Other: Park facilities include snow tubing.