Best Places to Stay in Kanazawa
One of Japan’s most historic and rewarding cities, Kanazawa also offers visitors plenty of excellent accommodation options including high-end hotels and ‘ryokan’ (traditional guesthouses). On this page you will find the following information:
Readily accessible from Tokyo using the Hokuriku Shinkansen or from Kyoto and Osaka using the Limited Express Thunderbird, Kanazawa offers visitors an enticing blend of historic attractions and districts, museums and galleries along with high-end shopping and dining. It’s no exaggeration to say that it is one of Japan’s most engaging cities, and as such, it’s no surprise that Kanazawa also boasts plenty of fantastic accommodation options.
25 Things to Do Around Kanazawa & Where to Stay
As the terminus of the Hokuriku Shinkansen Line from Tokyo and Thunderbird …
This page is intended to be read in conjunction with our ’25 Things to Do Around Kanazawa’ page. We hope that both pages inspire you to visit Kanazawa and are of assistance in finding the right accommodation for you.
RECOMMENDED PLACES TO STAY IN & AROUND KANAZAWA
Kanazawa is a relatively compact city with accommodation largely concentrated in three main areas, while you’ll also find an excellent range of options outside the city. In this section we provide information about accommodation in the following areas:
KANAZAWA STATION AREA – KENROKUEN GARDEN / KANAZAWA CASTLE PARK AREA – HIGASHI CHAYA / ASANO RIVER AREA – KOMATSU AIRPORT AREA — KAGA ONSEN AREA – TOYAMA CITY AREA — SHIRAKAWA-GO & GOKAYAMA AREA — NOTO PENINSULA AREA
There is no shortage of accommodation in the city ranging from luxury hotels, mid-range to budget, and extending to traditional ‘ryokan’ (guesthouses) and youth hostels. A large number of hotels can be found in and around the station while the areas around Kenrokuen Garden and Kanazawa Castle Park along with the Higashi Chaya and Asano River has some excellent traditional guesthouses and restaurants. Let’s start with the most popular area to stay:
KANAZAWA STATION AREA
The largest concentration of accommodation in Kanazawa can be found in and round the station. The area boasts many large, Western-style hotels that can be directly accessed from the station or within a short walk, making it an ideal location for travellers wanting Western rooms and amenities and wanting to avoid having to carry your luggage to a more distant location. From the station, local buses run to and from many of the city’s most popular attractions, most of which can also be reached on-foot within 30 to 40-minutes. For more information including accommodation listings, see our ‘Kanazawa: Kanazawa Station Area’ hotel page.
KENROKUEN GARDEN / KANAZAWA CASTLE PARK AREA
Kenrokuen Garden and Kanazawa Castle Park are two to the best-known and popular attractions in the city. Accommodation is dotted around the perimeter of both with the area to the west have a large concentration of both large hotels and small guesthouses. In this area you will also find many of Kanazawa’s best museums including the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, Ishikawa Prefectural Museum of Art, National Crafts Museum and DT Suzuki Museum. Often referred to as the ‘Kanazawa Cultural Zone’, this is a convenient area to stay within a short walking distance of these and other attractions including the Nagamachi samurai district. For more information including accommodation listings, see our ‘Kanazawa: Kenrokuen Garden & Kanazawa Castle Park Area’ hotel page.
HIGASHI CHAYA DISTRICT / ASANO RIVER AREA
Known for its traditional teahouses and historic streetscape, the Higashi Chaya District of Kanazawa is a popular destination for many travellers. Located on the eastern-side of Asano River – around 25 to 30-minutes walk from Kanazawa Station – the area also boasts an excellent range of accommodation – mostly ‘ryokan’ (traditional guesthouses) along with small, family-run hotels and self-contained apartments. While less convenient than staying around the station or the Kenrokuen Garden / Kanazawa Castle Park area, the Higashi Chaya District is easy to get to and opens-up some great accommodation and dining options. For more information including accommodation listings, see our ‘Kanazawa: Higashi Chaya District & Asano River Area’ hotel page.
KOMATSU AIRPORT AREA
Komatsu Airport is the nearest airport to Kanazawa, located around 30km to the southwest of the city. The airport handles mostly domestic air traffic while also handling a small number of flights to and from international destinations including Hong Kong, Seoul, Shanghai and Taipei. For travellers flying in or out of Komatsu early or late in day, there are handful of accommodation options – mostly budget to mid-range business hotels – around Komatsu Station, the nearest train station to the airport. For more information and accommodation listings, see our ‘Kanazawa: Komatsu Airport Area’ hotel page.
KAGA ONSEN AREA
Moving outside of Kanazawa, Kaga Onsen is a popular hot spring area located around 50-minutes to the south-west of the city. Located on Japan’s north coast, the area is comprised of four hot spring towns – Yamashiro, Yamanaka, Amazu and Katayamazu – that offer lots of accommodation options, most of which have their own in-house hot springs. For more information including accommodation listings, see our ‘Kaga Onsen Area’ hotel page.
TOYAMA CITY AREA
The coastal city of Toyama lies around 65km to the east of Kanazawa. Connected by the Hokuriku Shinkansen, its takes only 23 minutes to move between the cities meaning that staying in Toyama and visiting Kanazawa for daytrips is easy and convenient – especially for travellers with a Japan Rail (JR) Pass which allows of use of the shinkansen at no additional charge. There is less demand for accommodation in Toyama and prices are usually cheaper than in Kanazawa. Centred around Toyama Station and to the south around Toyama Castle Park, the city has lots of good accommodation options including large to mid-sized Western hotels while Toyama is also worth exploring its own right. For accommodation listings, see our ‘Toyama City Area’ hotel page.
SHIRAKAWA-GO & GOKAYAMA AREA
The World Heritage-listed villages of Shirakawa-go and Gokayama lie 75 to 85-minutes to the south of Kanazawa. They rank among the most popular destinations in Japan and while staying there doesn’t make sense if your intention is to explore Kanazawa, exploring and staying in Shirakawa-go and Gokayama either side of visiting Kanazawa is a great option. A range of accommodation exists in and around the villages including converted farmhouses. Should you wish to stay in or nearby one of the villages, expect high prices and make sure to book well in advanced. For accommodation listings, see our ‘Shirakawa-go & Gokayama’ hotel page.
NOTO PENINSULA AREA
Lying a couple of hours to the north of Kanazawa, Noto Peninsula remains largely unknown to international visitors. Extending 100 kilometres into the Sea of Japan, Noto Peninsula is relatively isolated region and home to beautiful coastal vistas. A place of tremendous beauty including rugged coasts and lush forests, the area has not developed to the extent of other regions of Japan and as such, offers visitors escape, solitude and pristine beauty. A lack of convenient public transport means that its best-suited to travellers with their own car, but if that’s you and you fancy getting-out of the city, Noto Peninsula is a fantastic destination offering some great seaside accommodation including a couple of excellent ‘ryokan’ (traditional guesthouses) with hot springs. For more information including accommodation listings, see our ‘Noto Peninsula Area’ hotel page.
25 THINGS TO DO AROUND KANAZAWA
One of the most historic and enjoyable cities in Japan, Kanazawa is well-suited to a multi-day visit combining the many attractions of the city with nearby regional highlights. From its historic attractions and districts to its excellent galleries, museums, shopping and dining, visitors tend to fall in love with Kanazawa and wish they’d allowed more time in their schedule to explore all it has to offer. For tips and suggestions of what to do in the city, see our ’25 Things To Do Around Kanazawa’ page.
HOW TO GET TO KANAZAWA
Kanazawa Station is the gateway to both the city and northern reaches of Central Japan. Readily accessible using services from Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, visitors can move to and from Kanazawa quickly and in comfort. For information on how to get there, see our ‘How to Get to Kanazawa’ page.
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