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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

A Photographer’s Information to Kanazawa, Japan

The Prime 5 Images Places in Kanazawa

Kanazawa, a Japanese metropolis identified for its well-preserved Edo-era districts, lovely gardens, and artwork museums, is a gem you could add to your Japan itinerary. In case you’re in search of the very best Kanazawa images places on your upcoming go to, that is simply the information for you.

In case you’ve been studying or following The Wandering Lens for some time, you’ll know the way a lot I really like Japan. Having visited the nation over 11 occasions, it’s someplace that’s so particular to me, nevertheless, it wasn’t till my most up-to-date go to that I managed to get to Kanazawa, and I used to be so pleasantly stunned.

It had been described to me as a quieter Kyoto; much less crowds, historic districts and loads of images alternatives.

Kanazawa was precisely that! Whereas it doesn’t have the quantity of temples and sights as Kyoto (and I completely advocate visiting Kyoto), Kanazawa is much much less crowded which suggests you possibly can wander slowly and seize the ornate particulars of town, the landscapes, the river, gardens, and the structure. I’d advocate spending a minimum of two days exploring Kanazawa, there’s additionally the sensation you might keep for weeks, simply taking it straightforward, strolling round and photographing this lovely metropolis.

Kanazawa Photography Location Guide


It’s peaceable truly, that’s most likely the very best phrase to explain it. Positive you’ll nonetheless discover different vacationers within the in style areas, however about 80% lower than Kyoto, Osaka, or Tokyo. Truly, I can’t vouch for cherry blossom season or autumn, I’m positive it’s fairly busy in these durations as a result of recognition of the gardens with Japanese vacationers additionally.

Alas, let’s take a peek at some suggestions for what to {photograph} in Kanazawa…

Kanazawa Castle, Japan

Kanazawa Images Places – advisable by Lisa Michele Burns of The Wandering Lens

#1 Kenrokuen Backyard

As one in all Japan’s “Three Nice Gardens,” it exemplifies the final word in Japanese panorama backyard design, Kenrokuen presents an ever-changing canvas that captivates photographers and nature lovers alike.

Highlights embrace the fragile hues of cherry blossoms in spring, azaleas and irises in early summer time, vibrant foliage in autumn, and the snowy landscapes and yukitsuri (snow-hanging ropes) in winter, designed to guard the branches of pine bushes from heavy snow.

The backyard is dwelling to a number of tea homes, bridges, and the long-lasting Kotoji lantern, providing a glimpse into Japan’s cultural traditions. It’s possible you’ll get fortunate and see a crane nestled in one of many Neagari Pine, in any other case, you’ll have the ability to {photograph} town skyline from varied vantage factors across the backyard, or get just a little nearer to the main points and concentrate on the flowers, greenery and superbly manicured designs.

Kenrokuen Garden Kenrokuen Garden

In case you exit via the Katsurazaka Gate, you possibly can cross the bridge into the Kanazawa Fort grounds, simply connecting two photogenic places of town.

Kenrokuen Backyard Opening Instances:

  • Kenrokuen Backyard is open to the general public year-round.
  • Opening hours are from 7:00 AM to six:00 PM from March to October (spring to autumn) and from 8:00 AM to five:00 PM from November to February (winter).
  • These hours could also be prolonged throughout particular occasions or seasons, such because the cherry blossom viewing interval in spring.

Ticket Costs:

  • Admission Payment: The entry price for Kenrokuen Backyard is 320 yen for adults and 100 yen for youngsters.
  • Annual Passport: For individuals who want to go to the backyard a number of occasions all year long, an annual passport is offered for 1,020 yen, providing limitless entry in case you’re eager to return for cherry blossoms or autumn leaves!

Kenrokuen Garden

#2 Higashi Chaya District

The Higashi Chaya District, one in all Kanazawa’s most enchanting and traditionally vital areas, it’s a basic instance of a conventional chaya (teahouse) district in Japan. This space, presents a glimpse into the Edo interval’s cultural richness and the distinctive architectural fashion of chaya, the place Geisha entertained company with dances, music, and dialog.

Strolling via its atmospheric streets, you’re transported again in time, amidst wooden-latticed buildings and stone-paved pathways, making it a chief location for capturing the essence of conventional Japan.

Highlights of the Higashi Chaya District:

Utasu Shrine: Tucked away within the Higashi Chaya District (reverse probably the most scrumptious, fluffy pancake café!), Utasu Shrine is a lesser-known gem that gives a quiet respite from the busier streets. This Shinto shrine, although small in dimension, is wealthy in historical past and spirituality, identified for its water deity and believed to bless guests with internal purification and therapeutic. The shrine’s tranquil atmosphere, coupled with its conventional torii gate and plush environment, supplies a serene backdrop for images, there’s additionally a sneaky Ninja hiding beneath it, go and see if yow will discover it!

Higashi Chaya District

Chaya Streets: The principle streets of Higashi Chaya District are lined with superbly preserved chaya homes. These buildings, with their distinctive wood lattices, usually are not simply architectural marvels but in addition function the right topics for images, capturing the district’s historic attraction. You’ll discover it finest to discover and easily wander along with your digital camera, doing so at dawn, after which once more within the night will will let you absorb this space and all of its glory…the dimly lit night is one thing actually particular!

Kaikaro Tea Home: One other notable images spot is the Kaikaro Tea Home, which blends conventional structure with up to date artwork installations. Guests can take pleasure in tea in an surroundings that captures the cultural fusion attribute of modern-day Kanazawa.

*Only a notice on privateness on this space, just like Kyoto’s Gion District, it’s necessary to respect the privateness of those that reside within the district. Keep away from taking images of individuals with out their permission and be conscious of personal property, or lingering/posing in entrance of houses.

Higashi Chaya District Higashi Chaya District

#3 Kanazawa Fort Park

Kanazawa Fort Park, with its expansive grounds and historic buildings, presents a panoramic view of Japan’s feudal previous and its architectural grandeur. The citadel, initially constructed within the late sixteenth century and reconstructed through the years, and it’s white lead-tiled roofs shimmer within the daylight, making a hanging distinction in opposition to the encircling greenery and the deep blue sky, in case you’re fortunate!

Highlights and Images Places inside Kanazawa Fort Park

Ishikawa-mon Gate: The gate, a delegated Vital Cultural Property, is an iconic image of Kanazawa Fort. Its imposing construction and conventional design make it a preferred images spot, particularly when framed by the cherry blossoms in spring or the fiery maple leaves in autumn. That is the gate you’ll enter from if current Kenrokuen Backyard, a phenomenal transition of scenes and images alternatives.

Gojikken Nagaya Storehouse: This lengthy storehouse, with its white plaster partitions and conventional tiled roof, stretches alongside the citadel’s northern boundary. Its size and the way in which it harmoniously blends with the pure panorama supply compelling views for images, capturing the essence of feudal structure.

Hashizume-mon Gate: Right here, you’ll discover a phenomenal wood bridge crossing the citadel moat, one in all my images highlights of Kanazawa. You should use foliage alongside the hedge to seize photographs of the partitions, wood bridge and water, or await sundown and get the solar glowing because it units behind the citadel.

Kanazawa Castle

Gyokusen’inmaru Backyard: Positioned throughout the citadel grounds, this superbly landscaped backyard is a comparatively current addition, designed to emulate the standard strolling gardens of samurai residences. With its picturesque pond, stone lanterns, and thoroughly organized flora, Gyokusen’inmaru supplies serene settings for images, particularly in the course of the golden hours of dawn and sundown.

Hishi Yagura Turret and Hashizume-mon Tsuzuki Yagura: These reconstructed turrets and connecting partitions are prime examples of the citadel’s defensive buildings. Climbing to the highest of those turrets presents a vantage level for capturing the sprawling citadel grounds, the trendy cityscape of Kanazawa, and the distant mountains.

*Additionally simply to notice, watch out to test closing occasions earlier than coming into the backyard, as they’ll shut the gates and the occasions change all year long, I’ll have been seen dashing throughout the grounds with simply 5minutes left earlier than closing as a result of I acquired carried away taking images!

Kanazawa Castle

#4 Nagamachi Samuari District

This space, the place samurai and their households as soon as lived, is understood for its well-preserved mud partitions and conventional samurai residences. It presents a novel perspective on town’s historical past and tradition, with the Nomura Samurai Home being a spotlight and maybe my favorite place to {photograph} in all of Kanazawa.

The Nomura household, serving underneath the Maeda lords, who dominated the Kaga Area (present-day Ishikawa and Toyama prefectures), have been among the many elite samurai class. Following the Meiji Restoration in 1868, which led to the abolition of the samurai class, the Nomura household confronted monetary difficulties and finally misplaced their esteemed standing. The home was opened to the general public to protect and share the samurai heritage with future generations.

The Nomura Samurai Home is famend for its architectural magnificence and the serene backyard it overlooks. The home options superbly preserved rooms that show the life-style and artifacts of the samurai period, together with intricate armour, weapons, calligraphy, and conventional furnishings. The inside displays the samurai’s philosophical pursuits, with a Zen-like simplicity and a deep connection to nature evident in each side of its design.

Nomura Samurai House


One of many home’s most fascinating options is its small however beautiful backyard, which is taken into account a masterpiece of Japanese panorama gardening. Comprising rigorously chosen stones, water options, and meticulously pruned bushes and shrubs, the backyard embodies the Japanese aesthetic of wabi-sabi, which finds magnificence in simplicity and impermanence.

Opening Hours:

  • The Nomura Samurai Home is open to guests year-round.
  • The home is accessible from 8:30 AM to five:30 PM (March to October) and from 8:30 AM to 4:30 PM (November to February).

Admission Charges:

  • Entry to the Nomura Samurai Home prices 550 yen for adults and 400 yen for youngsters, providing a priceless alternative to discover the legacy of the samurai in Kanazawa.

*Additionally, attempt to plan your go to when it’s not very crowded to take pleasure in this lovely house in peace, and have the time to seize a set of photographs with out crowds.

Inside the Samurai House of Kanazawa Samurai house in Kanazawa, Japan

#5 Asanogawa River

The Asanogawa River, one of many two rivers that gracefully stream via Kanazawa, presents a picturesque setting that captivates photographers and nature lovers alike, notably in case you’re pairing it with a go to to the Higashi Chaya District.

Alongside the river simply west of the Asanogawa Bridge, you’ll discover Kazuemachi Chaya District, with conventional machiya (townhouses) lining the water’s edge, showcasing the harmonious mix of Kanazawa’s historic attraction and pure magnificence.

Every season transforms the river right into a distinctly totally different panorama (I’m comfortable to go to in a number of seasons!). Spring brings cherry blossoms that delicately body the riverbanks, summer time presents lush greenery, autumn reveals a tapestry of fiery colours, and winter covers the scene in a serene blanket of snow, every offering distinctive compositions and moods for photographers because the skyline and buildings are additionally remodeled.

Kanazawa River, Japan

Historic Bridges and Structure: The river is flanked by a number of bridges, every with its personal historical past and character. The Asanogawa Ohashi, specifically, is a favourite spot for capturing the distinction between the flowing river and the static fantastic thing about Kanazawa’s conventional buildings.

Golden Hour and Blue Hour: The golden hour brings a heat glow to the river, preferrred for capturing mushy, illuminated scenes, whereas the blue hour supplies a cool distinction, highlighting the lights of town and making a magical environment. Mild posts, dimly gentle entrances to houses and the bridges themselves, supply quite a lot of topics to work with.

Along the banks of the Asanogawa River in Kanazawa

Lastly, the Omicho Market: For these concerned about avenue images and capturing native life, Omicho Market, with its bustling stalls, contemporary seafood, and vibrant environment, is right. Early morning is the very best time to go to to seize the vitality and interactions of native distributors and customers. Sadly, I can’t embrace an excessive amount of extra available on the market as I solely had an opportunity to go to within the early night, when the market stalls have been closed…I may really feel it might be fairly thrilling when the motion is going on although!

Inside the Omicho Market of Kanazawa, Japan

Basic Journey Suggestions for Visiting Kanazawa

What’s the very best time to go to Kanazawa?

Spring (March to Might) and autumn (September to November) are probably the most picturesque occasions to go to, with nice climate and the fantastic thing about cherry blossoms or autumn colors.

Getting round Kanazawa: Town is compact and simply explored on foot or by bicycle. For longer distances, buses and taxis are available and straightforward to flag down. The space between the practice station and central space is lower than 10minutes, in case you don’t have a lot baggage you might stroll it, or take a neighborhood bus. For these with baggage (like me!), a taxi is inexpensive and a straightforward resolution.

Delicacies to eat in Kanazawa: Don’t miss attempting Kanazawa’s seafood, particularly sushi and sashimi contained in the Omicho Market, as town is understood for its contemporary catch from the Sea of Japan.

An image of Kanazawa at night

Travelling to Kanazawa by Practice:

In case you’ve acquired a JR Cross, use it to achieve Kanazawa in consolation. Relying on the practice you’re taking, the journey time will differ, however I like to recommend the Hokuriki Shinkansen from Tokyo, it passes via some lovely surroundings! You should use Kanazawa as a center cease between Tokyo and Kyoto too, making a triangle of types in your itinerary.

Attending to Kanazawa from Tokyo: Take the Hokuriku Shinkansen from Tokyo Station to Kanazawa Station. The journey takes roughly 2.5 to three hours, making it a handy possibility for travellers coming from the capital.

Attending to Kanazawa from Kyoto: Take the Restricted Specific Thunderbird practice from Kyoto Station to Kanazawa Station. The journey time is about 2 hours and 20 minutes.

PS – If travelling by practice, don’t neglect to select up snacks and a bento field…it’s all a part of the expertise and also you’ll see when you’re on board, everybody does it!

JR Rail Pass and Train at Tokyo Station

The place to Keep in Kanazawa

My base for the go to was on the central, new and really, very comfy Soki Kanazawa. It felt like a luxurious spa resort for the value of a typical room…I extremely advocate staying right here when photographing Kanazawa.

We opted for the Deluxe Twin room to make sure there was sufficient room for suitcases, nevertheless there was greater than sufficient house, the toilet was lovely, there have been robes and slippers included, plus little extras!

Additionally, ending a day of photographing with a cease by Lawson or Household Mart to select up a mini banquet dinner, then dine in our room whereas saving and enhancing photographs was probably the most enjoyable factor! In case you’ve been to Japan, you’ll know what I imply by this…combini (grocery store) dinners are the very best.

Your map of Kanazawa Images Places –

click on and it’ll open in Google Maps


Proceed studying about Japan with The Wandering Lens:

A Photographer’s Information to Tokyo

A Information to the Greatest Images Places in Kyoto

Views: Photographing Arashiyama’s Bamboo Grove

Views: Images suggestions for visiting Fushimi Inari

Behind the Lens: Photographing a Sumo Match in Tokyo

In case you’re eager to enhance your images, take The Wandering Lens ‘3 Week Composition Reset Course‘ to refresh your method to images and study new inventive composition methods.

You’ll additionally discover The Freelance Journey Photographer Course out there to start out at any time on-line, so you possibly can study at your individual tempo and start exploring the world of freelance images.

Kanazawa Castle Park, Japan Kanazawa Castle Park Kenrokuen Gardens with autumn colours

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