7 Unusual Things To Do In Kanazawa Japan – 2024 Ultimate Guide

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Kanazawa, Japan, is a city brimming with unique and offbeat experiences that cater to the adventurous traveler seeking something out of the ordinary. From hidden gems to quirky attractions, there are plenty of unusual things to do in Kanazawa Japan that will leave you with unforgettable memories. Whether you’re exploring the historic districts, discovering unconventional art galleries, or indulging in local delicacies at unconventional eateries, Kanazawa offers a plethora of unconventional activities that will surprise and delight even the most seasoned traveler.

Visit the Ninja Temple

Essential Information

– Address: 1 Chome-2-12 Nomachi, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 921-8031, Japan
– Opening Hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
– Fee: 800 yen for adults, 500 yen for children
– Visit Duration: Approximately 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: History enthusiasts, families with children

Why is it so unusual

The Ninja Temple in Kanazawa, Japan, stands out as an unusual tourist attraction due to its intriguing blend of history and mystery. Unlike traditional temples, this unique site offers visitors the chance to explore hidden passageways, secret compartments, and trap doors that were once used by ninjas for espionage and stealth missions. As you wander through the temple, you can try your hand at uncovering hidden mechanisms and solving puzzles designed to test your wit and agility. Additionally, the temple features a variety of ninja artifacts and tools on display, providing a fascinating glimpse into the secretive world of these ancient warriors. For a truly immersive experience, visitors can even participate in ninja training sessions to learn the art of stealth and deception firsthand. Whether you’re a history buff or simply seeking a one-of-a-kind adventure, a visit to the Ninja Temple is sure to leave you captivated by its enigmatic charm.

Explore the Geisha District

Essential Information

– Address: Higashi Chaya District, Kanazawa, Japan
– Opening Hours: Varies by establishment
– Fee: Free to explore, fees for specific activities
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: History enthusiasts, culture seekers

Why is it so unusual

The Geisha District in Kanazawa offers a unique glimpse into the traditional world of geishas, known as geikos in this region. While exploring this district, visitors can partake in activities that are not commonly found in other tourist destinations. One such unusual experience is the opportunity to witness a geisha performance up close. These skilled entertainers showcase their talents in traditional arts such as dance, music, and conversation, providing a rare and intimate cultural encounter.

Another distinctive aspect of the Geisha District is the chance to participate in a tea ceremony led by a geisha. This ritualistic practice involves precise movements and etiquette, offering a deeper understanding of Japanese customs and traditions. Visitors can also engage in a private conversation with a geisha, gaining insights into their training, lifestyle, and the significance of their role in Japanese society.

For those seeking a hands-on experience, some establishments in the Geisha District offer workshops where guests can learn traditional crafts like calligraphy or origami under the guidance of a geisha. This interactive session allows visitors to appreciate the meticulous skills and dedication required to master these art forms.

In addition to these activities, exploring the historic teahouses and traditional architecture of the Geisha District provides a fascinating insight into the refined world of geishas. The intricate wooden facades, sliding doors, and tranquil gardens transport visitors back in time, creating a serene atmosphere that contrasts with the bustling modern city outside.

Overall, the Geisha District in Kanazawa stands out as an unusual tourist attraction due to its authentic cultural experiences, offering a rare opportunity to engage with the captivating world of geishas in a meaningful and memorable way.

Discover the Myoryuji Temple

Essential Information

– Address: 1-2-12 Nomachi, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 921-8031, Japan
– Opening Hours: 9:00 AM – 4:30 PM
– Fee: 800 yen for adults, 500 yen for children
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: History enthusiasts, travelers seeking unique experiences

Why is it so unusual

The Myoryuji Temple, also known as the Ninja Temple, offers visitors a glimpse into the secretive world of ninjas in feudal Japan. Unlike traditional temples, Myoryuji is filled with hidden passages, trap doors, and secret rooms designed to confuse and deter intruders. As you explore the temple, you’ll encounter features such as hidden staircases, fake walls, and even a labyrinth of interconnected tunnels.

One of the most unusual aspects of Myoryuji is its lack of traditional architectural elements. Instead of ornate decorations and grand halls, the temple is designed for practicality and defense. Visitors can marvel at the ingenuity of the ninja architects who created these intricate systems to protect the temple and its inhabitants.

Another unique feature of Myoryuji is its extensive network of escape routes. The temple is said to have over 20 hidden exits, allowing ninjas to quickly flee in case of danger. As you navigate the maze-like layout of the temple, you’ll feel like you’ve stepped back in time to an era of espionage and intrigue.

For those fascinated by the mysterious world of ninjas, a visit to Myoryuji Temple is a must. Explore the hidden passageways, uncover the secrets of the ninja architecture, and imagine yourself as a stealthy warrior navigating this unconventional temple.

Wander through the Samurai District

Essential Information

– Address: Samurai District, Kanazawa, Japan
– Opening Hours: Varies by specific attractions
– Fee: Some attractions are free, others may have a small entrance fee
– Visit Duration: 2-3 hours
– Ideal for: History enthusiasts, culture seekers

Why is it so unusual

When exploring Kanazawa, Japan, one cannot miss the opportunity to wander through the Samurai District. This historical area offers a unique glimpse into the lives of the samurai warriors who once resided here. What sets this district apart are the unusual activities that visitors can partake in, providing a truly immersive experience.

One of the standout attractions is the Nomura House, a well-preserved samurai residence that showcases traditional architecture and artifacts. Visitors can witness firsthand how these elite warriors lived centuries ago, offering a rare insight into their daily routines and customs.

For those seeking a hands-on experience, the Nagamachi district offers samurai armor and sword rental services. Imagine donning the armor of a samurai warrior and wielding a traditional sword, feeling the weight of history on your shoulders as you walk the same streets as these legendary figures.

Additionally, visitors can participate in calligraphy workshops to learn the art of Japanese brush writing, a skill highly valued by the samurai class. This unique activity allows travelers to connect with the cultural heritage of the samurai and gain a deeper appreciation for their way of life.

To truly immerse oneself in the spirit of the samurai, consider attending a tea ceremony in a traditional tea house within the district. This serene experience provides a moment of tranquility amidst the bustling city, offering a glimpse into the refined tastes and rituals of the samurai elite.

Overall, the Samurai District in Kanazawa stands out for its unconventional activities that allow visitors to step back in time and engage with the rich history of Japan’s legendary warriors. It is a must-visit destination for those looking to delve into the fascinating world of the samurai and experience a truly unique cultural adventure.

Experience a Gold Leaf Workshop

Essential Information

– Address: Higashiyama, Kanazawa, Japan
– Opening Hours: 9:00 AM – 5:00 PM
– Fee: ¥2,000 per person
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: Art enthusiasts and those interested in traditional crafts

Why is it so unusual

When visiting Kanazawa, Japan, one of the most unusual yet fascinating experiences you can partake in is a Gold Leaf Workshop. This unique attraction allows visitors to delve into the intricate world of gold leaf craftsmanship, a tradition deeply rooted in Kanazawa’s history.

Upon entering the workshop, you are greeted by a shimmering display of gold leaf products, ranging from delicate ornaments to stunning artworks. The workshop guides you through the meticulous process of creating your own gold leaf masterpiece, from applying the thin sheets of gold onto various surfaces to learning the ancient techniques of polishing and finishing.

What sets this experience apart is the opportunity to witness firsthand the skill and precision required to work with such a precious material. Visitors are encouraged to try their hand at gilding different objects, providing a hands-on experience that is both educational and rewarding.

As you immerse yourself in the world of gold leaf craftsmanship, you gain a newfound appreciation for the artistry and dedication that goes into creating these exquisite pieces. Whether you are a seasoned artist or simply curious about traditional crafts, a Gold Leaf Workshop in Kanazawa offers a truly unforgettable and unusual experience that showcases the beauty and craftsmanship of this ancient art form.

Take a stroll in the Kenrokuen Garden

Essential Information

– Address: 1-4 Kenrokumachi, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-0936, Japan
– Opening Hours: 7:00 AM – 6:00 PM (March to October), 8:00 AM – 5:00 PM (November to February)
– Fee: 310 yen for adults, 100 yen for children
– Visit Duration: 1-2 hours
– Ideal for: Nature lovers, photographers, history enthusiasts

Why is it so unusual

When exploring the Kenrokuen Garden in Kanazawa, Japan, visitors are often captivated by its serene beauty and historical significance. However, what truly sets this garden apart are the unique activities and features that make it an unusual tourist attraction.

One of the most distinctive aspects of Kenrokuen is the ancient art of yukitsuri, which involves the intricate process of suspending ropes and bamboo structures over trees to protect them from heavy snowfall during the winter months. This traditional technique not only showcases the garden’s commitment to preserving its natural beauty but also offers visitors a rare glimpse into a centuries-old practice.

Another unusual highlight of Kenrokuen is the Kotoji Toro, a stone lantern with two legs that is said to resemble the bridge of a koto, a traditional Japanese stringed instrument. This iconic lantern is not only a symbol of the garden but also a unique photo opportunity for visitors looking to capture the essence of Japanese culture.

For those seeking a more interactive experience, Kenrokuen offers tea ceremonies in the Seisonkaku Villa, where guests can partake in the ancient ritual of preparing and enjoying matcha tea in a traditional tatami room. This immersive cultural activity provides a deeper understanding of Japanese customs and traditions, making it a memorable and educational experience for visitors of all ages.

In addition to these distinctive features, Kenrokuen also boasts a variety of seasonal events and activities, such as cherry blossom viewing in spring and snow lantern festivals in winter, ensuring that each visit to the garden is a truly unique and unforgettable experience.

Visit the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art

Essential Information

– Address: 1-2-1 Hirosaka, Kanazawa, Ishikawa 920-8509, Japan
– Opening Hours: 10:00 AM – 6:00 PM (Closed on Mondays)
– Fee: 2600 yen for adults, 1000 yen for students
– Visit Duration: 2-3 hours
– Ideal for: Art enthusiasts, travelers seeking unique experiences

Why is it so unusual

When exploring Kanazawa, a visit to the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art is a must for those looking to delve into the unconventional side of art. What sets this museum apart is its interactive exhibits that blur the lines between art and audience participation. One of the most unusual attractions here is the “Swimming Pool,” a permanent exhibit that gives visitors the illusion of walking on water. This optical illusion is a favorite among visitors and provides a unique photo opportunity.

Another standout feature of the museum is the “Leandro Erlich: Swimming Pool” exhibit, where visitors can peer into a seemingly submerged room from below, creating a surreal experience. The museum also hosts rotating exhibitions that showcase cutting-edge contemporary art from around the world, ensuring that each visit offers something new and unexpected.

For those seeking a truly immersive experience, the museum’s “Turrell Room” is a must-see. This installation by renowned artist James Turrell plays with light and space, creating an otherworldly environment that challenges perceptions and captivates the senses.

Overall, the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art in Kanazawa stands out for its innovative approach to showcasing art and engaging visitors in a way that is both thought-provoking and visually stunning. Whether you’re an art enthusiast or simply looking for a unique cultural experience, this museum is sure to leave a lasting impression.

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