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From 1583 to the end of the Edo Period, Kanazawa Castle (, Kanazawajō) was the seat of the powerful Maeda Clan, lords of Kaga, a feudal domain ranking second only to the Tokugawa possessions in terms of size and wealth.

The castle burnt down several times over the centuries, and the most recent fires of 1881 were survived only by two storehouses and the Ishikawa-mon Gate. The gate dates from 1788 and faces Kenrokuen. For several decades, Kanazawa University occupied the former castle grounds until the campus was moved to the city's outskirts in the early 1990s. Since then, a project is underway to rebuild the castle's former buildings. In the meantime, most central structures are standing again and make a visit more interesting.

The first buildings to be reconstructed were the two turrets (Hishi and Tsuzuki Yagura) and a long storehouse (Gojukken Nagaya) that connects the two turrets. The buildings were rebuilt to their original 1850s appearance using traditional techniques and materials. They were opened to the public in 2001 and contain excellent displays on traditional carpentry. In 2015, the adjacent Hashizume-mon Gate was added. The turrets and the storehouse are the only part of the castle where an admission fee is charged.

Several of the castle's other gates have also been reconstructed, including the former main entrance gate, the Kahoku-mon Gate (in 2010) and the Nezumita-mon Gate (in 2020) near Oyama Shrine. The upper floors of both gates can be entered for free and contain displays about the gates' history and construction. In 2015, the Gyokuseninmaru Garden, a pretty garden with a central pond and circular walking path, was reconstructed and can be enjoyed for free. The castle's main keep was lost in a fire in 1602 and has not been rebuilt ever since.

Getting there and around

Kanazawa Castle Park is a large park in the center of Kanazawa and is accessible from many different sides. The most popular approach is through the Ishikawa-mon Gate, which is located only a few meters from the main entrance of Kenrokuen.

Kenrokuen and the castle park are a stop along the tourist-oriented Kanazawa Loop Bus which departs from the station's east exit (aka Kenrokuen Exit). The one way ride from Kanazawa Station takes about 20 minutes and costs 200 yen.

Alternatively, frequent Hokutetsu buses run between Kanazawa Station and Kenrokuen (15 minutes, 200 yen one way). Get off at Kenrokuen-shita bus stop, which is a short walk from the castle park. Furthermore, there are 1-3 JR buses per hour from Kanazawa Station, which are covered by the Japan Rail Pass. All buses depart from Kanazawa Station's east exit (Kenrokuen Exit).

How to get to and around Kanazawa

Hours and Fees

Castle Grounds

Hours

Closed

Admission

Gojukken Nagaya Storehouse and Turrets

Hours

Closed

Admission

Kahoku-mon Gate and Nezumita-mon Gate

Hours

Closed

Admission

Hotels around Kanazawa

Top rated in Kanazawa
Budget:
    • INOVA Kanazawa Station Hotel Suite
      Luxury
      INOVA Kanazawa Station Hotel Suite is located 600 metres from Kanazawa Station. Free WiFi is provided in all rooms. The property offers private parking. Featuring a balcony, all rooms have a flat-screen TV, washing machine and a kitchen with an induction stove, a fridge and a microwave. Each room has a living room, toilet and private bathroom with a TV. The nearest airport is Komatsu Airport, 29 km from INOVA Kanazawa Station Hotel Suite.
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    • Guesthouse Nagonde
      Budget-friendly
      Guesthouse Nagonde is located a 5-minute walk from JR Kanazawa Station, 1.2 km from Kanazawa Castle and 1.7 km from Kenrokuen Garden . Some rooms include a seating area where you can relax. Guesthouse Nagonde features free WiFi throughout the property. There is a shared kitchen at the property. Myoryuji - Ninja Temple is 2.4 km from Guesthouse Nagonde, while Kanazawa FORUS is 400 metres away.
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    • Sumiyoshiya
      Mid-range
      Offering free Wi-Fi and free-use bicycles and in-room Japanese meals, Sumiyoshiya is a traditional Japanese-style hotel. It features a garden, hot public baths and coin-operated laundry facilities. A free-use internet PC is available at the lobby. Rooms feature paper sliding doors, Japanese futon bedding and a seating area. All come with an LCD TV, a tea/coffee maker and a sink, and some have a private bathroom. Sumiyoshiya offers laundry services, luggage storage and free parking. A Japanese and a Western breakfast are served in the hotelfs dining room, while Japanese dinners featuring local ingredients can be enjoyed in either the guest room or the dining room. Sumiyoshiya is a 10-minute walk from Kenroku-en Garden, and a 15-minute walk from both JR Kanazawa Stationfs East exit and the historical Higashi Chaya-machi district. Omicho market is only a 1-minute walk.
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    • Kanazawa Guesthouse Stella
      Budget-friendly
      1.4 km from Kenrokuen Garden, Kanazawa Guesthouse Stella is situated in Kanazawa and features air-conditioned rooms. This 2-star guest house offers a shared kitchen, a shared lounge and free WiFi. The guest house has family rooms. At the guest house the rooms are fitted with bed linen and towels. Guests at Kanazawa Guesthouse Stella will be able to enjoy activities in and around Kanazawa, like hiking and cycling. Popular points of interest near the accommodation include Kanazawa Castle, Kanazawa Yasue Gold-Leaf Museum and Utasu Shrine. The nearest airport is Komatsu Airport, 31 km from Kanazawa Guesthouse Stella.
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    • THE SHARE HOTELS HATCHi Kanazawa
      Budget-friendly
      Renovated in March 2016, THE SHARE HOTELS HATCHi Kanazawa is located a 7-minute bus ride from JR Kanazawa Station. Free WiFi is provided throughout the property. Rooms at the property feature air conditioning and heating. Coin-operated laundry machines and safety deposit box are available for your convenience. There is a gift shop that sells local crafts, cafe, restaurant, shared kitchen/lounge featuring locally-made furniture and kitchenware at the property. Various local art works are featured on site. THE SHARE HOTELS HATCHi Kanazawa is a 8-minute walk from Kenrokuen and Kanazawa Castle.
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    • Guest House Kadoyasu
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring free WiFi throughout the property, Guest House Kadoyasu is located at an 8-minute walk away from JR Kanazawa Station. Guests can walk to Omi-cho Market in 5 minutes, while Higashi Chaya District is a 17-minutes walk away. Every room is equipped with air conditioning and heating facilities. There is a shared bathroom. There is a shared kitchen and lounge at this property. Luggage storage service before check-in and after check-out is offered. Bicycle rental is available. Kenrokuen Garden and Myoryuji - Ninja Temple can be reached within a 16-minute bus ride from the property. Komatsu Airport is 38 minutes away by car from Guest House Kadoyasu.
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    • so, KANAZAWA
      Mid-range
      Located in Kanazawa, 2.1 km from Kanazawa Castle, so, KANAZAWA provides rooms with air conditioning and free WiFi. The property is close to several well-known attractions, 1.1 km from Kanazawa FORUS, 1.1 km from Ozaki Shrine and 1.5 km from Oyama Shrine. The hotel features family rooms. All rooms at the hotel are equipped with a seating area and a flat-screen TV. All units include a private bathroom, slippers and bed linen. Popular points of interest near so, KANAZAWA include Ishikawa Ongakudo, Meitetsu M'za and Omicho Market. The nearest airport is Komatsu Airport, 30 km from the accommodation.
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    • UAN kanazawa
      Luxury
      UAN kanazawa is located a 5-minute walk from Musashigatsuji/Ohmicho Ichiba Bus Stop and Omicho Market. JR Kanazawa Station is 12 minutes by bus from the property, while Kanazawa Castle is 13 minutes on foot. Free WiFi is available throughout the entire property. A wheelchair accessible room can be found at this property. Each room at this hotel is air-conditioned and is fitted with a flat-screen TV with satellite channels. There is a complimentary handy Smartphone and desk in all the rooms. Enjoy a cup of tea from your terrace or patio. Every room comes with a private bathroom with a bath and high-tech toilet, with slippers provided. For your comfort, you will find free toiletries and a hairdryer. Yukata robes are also provided for the comfort of guests. A Japanese or Western-style breakfast featuring local specialities is available upon prior request. Guests can enjoy drinks at the bar. The property offers free soba noodle at night. You will find a 24-hour front desk at the property and free luggage storage is available. Guests can work out free of charge at the hotel's fitness gym. Kenrokuen Garden is a 15-minute walk from UAN kanazawa, while Myoryuji - Ninja Temple is a 15-minute bus ride away from the property. The nearest Airport is Komatsu Airport, a 55-minute bus away.
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    • K's House Kanazawa - Travelers Hostel
      Budget-friendly
      Featuring a terrace, K's House Kanazawa - Travelers Hostel is set in Kanazawa in the Ishikawa region, 1.3 km from Kanazawa Castle and 1.8 km from Kenrokuen Garden. Among the facilities at this property are a shared kitchen and a shared lounge, along with free WiFi throughout the property. The hostel features family rooms. Popular points of interest near the hostel include Myoryuji - Ninja Temple, D. T. Suzuki Museum and Nakamura Memorial Museum. The nearest airport is Komatsu Airport, 29 km from K's House Kanazawa - Travelers Host.
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    • Kanazawa Sainoniwa Hotel
      Luxury
      Surrounded by four gardens that change colours throughout the seasons, Kanazawa Sainoniwa Hotel offers spa facilities and an on-site restaurant. Private parking is possible on site and free WiFi is available in all guest rooms. All rooms here are non-smoking, carpeted and equipped with air conditioning and an air humidifier. Each room comes with a flat-screen TV. Selected room include a seating area with a sofa and a working desk. Private bathroom is fitted with bath and shower while free toiletries and Samui, Japanese traditional wear, are provided. Guests at Kanazawa Sainoniwa Hotel can enjoy spa on the ground floor. The on-site restaurant serves a buffet for breakfast. Drinks and snacks vending machines are locate throughout the hotel. From the hotel, JR Kanazawa Station is within a 15-minute walk. Guests can take a free shuttle from JR Kanazawa Station for 5 minutes to arrive at the property. The picturesque Kenrokuen Garden is under a 20-minute drive and Komatsu Airport is a 40-minute drive away.
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