There are many historical hot springs within our prefecture
One attraction that mustn't be forgotten during any visit to Japan is the hot spring resort. There are many hot springs in Ishikawa for those who wish to relax their body and soul. "Yamashiro Onsen" boasts a 300-year history, "Kaga Onsenkyo" offers views of the sacred Mount Hakusan, and is loved by writers such as Matsuo Basho from the Edo period. And then there's "Wakura Onsen," where the source of the hot spring water is under the seabed. Visiting these hot springs while enjoying the cuisine of Ishikawa will be your personal journey, a journey that will be different from other major sightseeing destinations in Japan.
Kenroku-en Garden：one of Japan's three most famous gardens, built over a period of 180 years. You can view a different scenery in every season: cherry blossoms in spring, new green leaves in early summer, colorful leaves in autumn, and deep snow in winter. Also highly recommended is a visit to the adjacent historic site of "Kanazawa Castle Park," a symbol of the culture of "Kaga Hyakumangoku".
Higashi Chaya / Nishi Chaya districts： walking these streets is like traveling back in time. You can taste Japanese confectionery, check out traditional crafts, and spend time at one of the "chayas" lining the streets. The term "chaya" refers to a place where geisha entertained guests during the Edo period. At that time, only certain classes of people were allowed to enter. Now, some "chaya" have been remodeled into cafes so that everyone can enjoy them. Experiencing the glamourous "chaya" culture is a must-do in Kanazawa.
Kanazawa 21st Century Museum：housing a collection of contemporary art, this museum is famous world-wide, with approximately 2.55 million visitors annually. The architectural concept is "a museum open to the city like a park" and it's loved by people in Japan and from all over the world.
Shirayone Senmaida (one thousand rice-paddy landscape of Shiroyone)： enjoy a superb view of overlapping rice paddies extending over the ocean. With 1,004 rice paddies, it's famous for being the best landscape in Japan. In winter, it's colored with brilliant illuminations, adding another layer of excitement to this magical experience.
Chirihama Beach Driveway：the only place in Japan where you can drive on sandy beaches by a car or by motorcycle. Driving on the 8-kilometer long beach is an exhilarating experience, and can make you feel like you are part of a movie scene.
Ganmon Cave：a scenery created by the raging waves of the Sea of Japan, the breaking waves hitting the eroded rocky cave jutting into the sea gives a powerful impression of nature. Especially in winter, you can feel the strength of the Sea of Japan up close. While enjoying the magical scenery, you might notice two strangely shaped rocks nearby, connected by a "shimenawa" rope. They are called "Hatago-iwa," and are said to represent a married couple.
Kaga / Hakusan
Kakusenkei Gorge：a valley of the Daishoji River that flows through the Yamanaka hot spring villages in the Kaga area, is famous for the best valley views in the Hokuriku region. From April to November, you can sit back and relax in a Japanese-style house called "Kawadoko", kept cool by the nearby river. The view is especially beautiful in autumn when one can see the exquisite autumn colours.
Mt. Hakusan：one of Japan's three famous mountains, along with Mt. Fuji and Mt. Tateyama. It is also called the "flower mountain" because of the abundance of its alpine plants. It is also relatively easy to climb, and you will encounter enchanting and memorable views along the way, such as the sea of clouds from the top of this holy mountain.
Experience the traditional Japan of Ishikawa!
Ishikawa Prefecture offers a wide variety of experiences. First, the gilding experience lets you experience the culture of gold leaf craft in Kanazawa, which accounts for 99% of Japan's production. Next, you can receive the traditional hospitality of the authentic geisha, called "geiko," in a traditional "ozashiki," or tatami room. And there is more: after experiencing traditional Japan, you can interact with lively locals at the morning and regular markets. After that, you can get a feel for the depth of Japanese cuisine by visiting the breweries of soy sauce, miso, sake, etc. Finally, on the Noto peninsula, you can appreciate fresh seafood and experience an unusual hands-on salt making process. Encountering the traditional Japan of Ishikawa is a must-do!