Welcome to Kanazawa & the Hokuriku Coast

Kanazawa, in Ishikawa-ken (石川県), is the biggest draw. It was once the power base of the feudal Maeda clan, and this legacy can still be seen in the city's traditional architecture, artisan workshops and famous garden. To the north, the Noto Peninsula has sweeping seascapes and quiet fishing villages.

West is little Fukui-ken (福井県), with one of the world's most influential Zen centres, some pretty towns and fascinating architectural ruins.

Toyama-ken (富山県), at the eastern end, is a culinary and architectural draw. Its bayfront capital city, Toyama, features seafood specialities renowned throughout Japan. Neighbouring Takaoka is home to awesome National Treasure Zuiryū-ji, a fusion of Buddhist architectural traditions.

Top experiences in Kanazawa & the Hokuriku Coast

Travel guides

Starting at $38.99

Image for

Kanazawa & the Hokuriku Coast activities

$679.35 Private & Custom Tours

Kanazawa Private Custom Full-Day Tour by Chartered Vehicle

Your day begins with a 9am pickup from your hotel or another centrally located point in Kanazawa. Greet your driver — and guide, if selected — and plan your route. Your private tour is entirely customizable according to the interests of you and your travel companions. Recommended spots: Kenrokuen Located next to Kanazawa Castle, the Kenrokuen garden is considered one of the top three most beautiful gardens in Japan. Visitors can enjoy a variety of trees and flowers that change colors throughout seasons. Kanazawa Castle Kanazawa's symbolic icon, Kanazawa Castle was built in 1583. The well-restored castle is worth visiting to see the traditional skills of Japanese carpenters who carefully put the building together without the use of any nails. Omicho Market Located in the center of the city of Kanazawa, Omicho Market has been the largest fish market in Kanazawa since the Edo period (1615 - 1868). The market is filled with more than 200 specialty shops and is a great place to stop by for a fresh seafood lunch. Your tour concludes with a drop-off back at the original departure point.

$79.40 Cultural & Theme Tours

Enjoy a Samurai Town with an Insider on a Full Day Small Group Tour of Kanazawa

After departure from your accommodation, this tour will visit Omicho market first. Omicho market is popular as the kitchen of Kanazawa citizens where seasonal fish and fruits gather, and it can be said that the crabs caught in the Sea of Japan face quite the fate, for it is here where the crabs are lined up, and then also the locally sourced fruit and oden's you can eat while walking around. You can enjoy this scene at your leisure. Next to Omicho market, you will visit Kanazawa Castle. Kanazawa castle, which is a symbol of Kaga Hyakumanges, was built in 1583 by Toshiie Maeda in full scale and was placed as a residence of 14 Maeda family of Kaga clan until 1869. All buildings other than Ishikawa gate and 30 Nagaya (row houses) have disappeared due to repeated fires, but since 1996 the public has benefited from Kanazawa Castle Park. In 2001, historical buildings were faithfully restored as best possible based on old pictures and old documents. The landscape has once again been revived for the present age. After lunch, you will visit Kenrokuen. Kenrokuen is one of the three famous Japanese national gardens, listed along with Mito Kairakuen and Okayama Korakuen. The garden boasts a beautiful appearance during every season, and the stunning winter snow hanging together with the famous Koji lanterns in Kanazawa. This is both a symbol and a must-see for Kanazawa sightseeing. At the end of the tour, you will visit Suzuki Daisenkan from Kenrokuen by way of Honda Forest Park. Suzuki Daisetsu Museum is a spot infused with the thoughts of a world-famous Buddhist philosopher, Suzuki Daisetsu, born Kanazawa, who made Zen culture widely known abroad. Further, Mr. Yoshio Taniguchi is represented here. He is famous for designing large portions of the New York Museum of Modern Art, in particular the extension and renovation of MoMA in 2004, consisting of three buildings, the "entrance building", the "exhibition building", the "thought space building." Here, various representations have been constructed. In the exhibits, it appears as though you passes through a long and narrow corridor that leads to a different space. There is freedom to think and feel as you wish, to touch, watch, and see things as they appear to you, as there is no formal explanation. There is also a space for the various world views of Zen, including the biggest attraction, "the garden of water glasses." Here there is a mysterious charm that draws in the visitor for whatever purpose that might be.

$89.38 Food, Wine & Nightlife

Kanazawa Omicho Market Tour & Cooking Class

ItineraryThis is a typical itinerary for this productStop At: Omicho MarketWe'll meet at Omicho Market (in front of Mister Donuts) Duration: 1 hour

$136.11 Cultural & Theme Tours

Geiko (Geisha) Performance & Dinner

We'll meet at the venue, which is a renovated traditional Kanazawa architecture. I'll give you a tour of this traditional wooden building, which itself has an interesting history! The night will begin with a traditional geisha performances, which includes singing, dancing, and traditional musical instruments. You'll have an opportunity to perform and interact with the geisha performers, too -- as they'll teach you how to gracefully dance, play the taiko drums, and more. After the performance, we'll take a little break before enjoying an authentic Kanazawa meal.This meal has been curated by a popular local Japanese restaurant that specializes in Kanazawa cuisine. Let us know in advance if you have any food allergies or dietary restrictions. During dinner, you'll have a chance to speak with the geiko performers and ask them anything that you want to know! Ask about their life, why them became a geiko performer, what their day-to-day is like, and more! Before the night has finished, you'll have an opportunity to take photos with the geisha performers. Don't miss out on this exclusive experience during your time in Japan -- it will be the highlight of your trip!

$399.26 Private & Custom Tours

Kanazawa Private Customized Tour from Kanazawa (8 or 5 hour option)

Kanazawa has been an important city in the region for centuries. In the Edo period (17th to 19th century), it served as the seat of the Maeda clan, the second most powerful clan in Edo era, and nowadays, it is the capital city of Ishikawa prefecture. There are many historically and culturally attractive destinations in Kanazawa, such as Kanazawa castle or Oyama shrine. Especially, next to Kanazawa castle, is Kenrokuen garden, and it is said to be one of three most beautiful landscape gardens in Japan. The garden had been designed and constructed for over two centuries and opened for the public during the 19th century. If traditional Japanese culture is your thing, Kanazawa is definitely a city that you must visit.The driver will pick you up at a time and meeting place you have chosen within Kanazawa city. For the 8-hour option, please choose a time between 8:00~13:00 and for the 5-hour option, between 8:00~16:00 (both tours will begin at 9:00 if a time is not specified.) Then, the driver will take you to any place that you request for your allotted hours. Please note that we are not responsible for any other costs related to your trip, such as admission fees or meals. At the end of the tour, the driver will drop you at your desirable place.

$852.97 Private & Custom Tours

8-Hour Private Tour to Shirakawa-go & Hida Takayama From Kanazawa

The driver will pick you up at 13:00 in central Kanazawa before whisking you away to Shirakawa-go, a village of traditional thatched-roof farmhouses and a World Heritage Site. Spend an hour exploring the village and the unique architecture of the farmhouses which will look even more impressive in the snow. Next up is Hida Takayama, affectionately called 'Little Kyoto', offering visitors a slice of traditional rural Japan with its exceptionally well-preserved streets and old town. Stroll around the town for an hour and feel as though you have stepped back in time. The Hida region is also well known for the quality of its beef and you will get to try some of it for dinner at Hida Takayama Matsuri no Mori. Hida beef is highly prized and it will be the best eating experience you can have in Takayama. The tour concludes with a visit to Hida Folk Village, an open-air museum known for its popular winter illumination event. The village consists of around 30 thatched-roof farmhouses that have been relocated from nearby Shirakawa-go and Gokayama. Having seen the farmhouses during the day, see them wonderfully lit up at night creating a magical winter landscape. A perfect ending to the tour. Return to your chosen drop-off point in central Kanazawa by 21:00.

Kanazawa & the Hokuriku Coast in detail