Japan Local Government Centre (JLGC) : London > Publications > Newsletter > An Introduction to Kanazawa City (Ishikawa Prefecture)



An Introduction to Kanazawa City (Ishikawa Prefecture)

Kenrokuen Garden

Kenrokuen Garden


Kanazawa is the capital city of Ishikawa Prefecture and is located on the north coast of Central Japan. The estimated population of Kanazawa is 460,000, and that of Ishikawa prefecture is 1.2 million.

During the Edo Period (1603-1868), the city prospered to become one of Japan’s leading cultural and economic hubs. Kanazawa was one of the few major Japanese cities to be spared from firebombing during World War II. As a result, Kanazawa’s architectural heritage has been preserved.


Kanazawa, 2 hours 30 minutes from Tokyo in 2015

This year, the Hokuriku region (Kanazawa is the centre of Hokuriku region) ranked fourth in the Lonely Planet guidebook for Best in Travel 2014 – ‘Top Regions’ category.

Kanazawa’s most popular sight is Kenrokuen Garden. This garden was created during Edo Period (1603-1868) for the Maeda Clan, which was the most powerful domain after the capital, Edo.

This garden is said to be one of the three most beautiful gardens in Japan and has 1.7 million visitors every year. Furthermore, this garden was awarded three stars by the Michelin Green Guide .

Nagamachi Samurai District

Nagamachi Samurai District

In Kanazawa you can also experience Samurai culture first hand. In Nagamachi Samurai District, you can experience the lifestyle of samurai from various ranks and see full-body armour, weapons and many other samurai artefacts and belongings.

Kanazawa is also famous for its production of Gold Leaves. The city’s name means “gold marsh”. The city is behind nearly all of the gold leaf production in Japan. In Kanazawa, you can buy and enjoy looking at the excellent works, as well as go to workshops to see how they are made, and at some places, even try your hand at making them yourself.

In 2015, the Hokuriku Shinkansen (high speed bullet train) will open, and will only take two hours 30 minutes from Tokyo and Kanazawa (currently it takes about four hours from Tokyo). Travelling to Kanazawa will become so easy!

The Hokuriku Shinkansen will start from 2015

The Hokuriku Shinkansen will start from 2015

Please visit Kanazawa and discover the real Japan.

For more information on Kanazawa, please visit Tourism ISHIKAWA