Regions of Japan

Hokkaido Tohoku Hokuriku
  • Hokkaido
Sub-zero temperatures and the greatest of outdoor environments, complemented by sizzling soul food and warm-hearted welcomes. Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush
  • Aomori
  • Akita
  • Iwate
  • Yamagata
  • Miyagi
  • Fukushima
Sleek apple-red and electric-green shinkansen whisk you up to a haven of fresh powder snow, fresh fruit and fearsome folk legends Fearsome festivals, fresh powder and vast fruit orchards—the rugged northern territory of Tohoku offers a fresh perspective on travel in Japan
Hokuriku Shinetsu
Hokuriku Shinetsu
  • Niigata
  • Toyama
  • Ishikawa
  • Fukui
  • Nagano
Mountains and sea meet in one of Japan's wildest regions, and the result is sheer beauty. Once largely inaccessible, Hokuriku is now reachable by shinkansen from Tokyo in a matter of hours An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare
  • Tokyo
  • Kanagawa
  • Chiba
  • Saitama
  • Ibaraki
  • Tochigi
  • Gunma
Characterized by the constant buzz of the world's most populous metropolitan area, the Kanto region is surprisingly green with an array of escapes that include mountainous getaways and subtropical islands Experience diversity at its fullest, from the neon of Tokyo to the ski slopes of Gunma, exotic wildlife of the Ogasawara Islands and cultural heritage of Kamakura
  • Yamanashi
  • Shizuoka
  • Gifu
  • Aichi
  • Mie
Served by the shinkansen line that connects Tokyo, Kyoto and Osaka, the Tokai region provides plenty of interesting diversions and easy excursions Tokai means "eastern sea," and this region stretches east from Tokyo to Kyoto and includes blockbuster attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama
  • Kyoto
  • Osaka
  • Shiga
  • Hyogo
  • Nara
  • Wakayama
From raucous nights out to outdoor thrills to peaceful reverie, trying to categorize the Kansai region is a futile task The Kansai region is one of extreme contrasts—the neon lights of Osaka and glittering Kobe nightscape, the peaceful realms of Shiga, Wakayama and Nara, and the cultured refinement of Kyoto
  • Tottori
  • Shimane
  • Okayama
  • Hiroshima
  • Yamaguchi
Less-traveled and delightfully inaccessible at times, the Chugoku region is a reminder that the journey is sometimes more important than the destination Welcome to Japan's warm and friendly western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower
  • Tokushima
  • Kagawa
  • Ehime
  • Kochi
Providing the stage for literary classics, fevered dancing and natural wonders Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving
  • Fukuoka
  • Saga
  • Nagasaki
  • Oita
  • Kumamoto
  • Miyazaki
  • Kagoshima
Easily reached by land, sea and air, the dynamic Kyushu prefectures are bubbling with energy, culture and activity The southern island of Kyushu is home to volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky, succulent seafood, steaming hot springs and the country's hottest entrepreneurial town
  • Okinawa
Ruins and recreated castles of the Ryukyu kings nestle amid magnificent beaches in Okinawa, a diver's paradise teeming with an amazing array of coral and undersea life Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings


Nagamachi Samurai District 長町武家屋敷跡

Catch a glimpse of Kanazawa's samurai life

Southeast of Kanazawa Castle lies the Nagamachi Bukeyashiki district, a neighborhood where the samurai of the powerful Maeda clan—the rulers of Kanazawa and the old Kaga Domain—once lived. Take a stroll back in time and absorb the lifestyle of the samurai during the Edo period (1603-1867).


  • A visit to an archetypal samurai house
  • Beautiful views of Kanazawa's oldest canal
  • Strolling through the narrow atmospheric streets

How to Get There

From the Ishikawa gate of Kanazawa Castle, the Nagamachi samurai district is a 10-minute walk. By bus from Kanazawa Station, both the Kanazawa loop bus and JR buses stop at Korinbo. Nagamachi is a five-minute walk from there.

Beautiful streets of samurai residences

Bukeyashiki are the traditional residences where samurai and their families lived during the Edo period. The Nagamachi district in Kanazawa retains its historic atmosphere with carefully preserved houses surrounded by earthen walls. Picturesque narrow lanes and small canals wind through the neighborhood lending added charm.

Inside the house of a samurai

The Nomura house, or Nomura-ke, is an Edo period mansion of a prosperous samurai with all of the objects that a samurai might own. The house has a lovely inner garden. Meticulously landscaped and tended, the garden is a work of art and the highlight of a visit. You can view the garden from different angles from many of the rooms inside the house.

As the power and wealth of the samurai declined and the fortunes of the merchant class rose, eventually the samurai had to abandon or sell their houses. The Nomura house is now owned by the city and has been carefully restored. It is open to the public for a small fee.

Merchant life and more

A five-minute walk south of Nomura-ke is the Shinise Kinenkan Museum, a restored merchant's pharmacy that served the samurai living in the area. At the museum, you can learn about the lives of the merchant class as well as see local Kanazawa crafts on display.

If you'd like to see samurai armor and relics of the Maeda clan, stop by the Maeda Tosanokami-ke Shiryokan, located five minutes south of Nomura-ke.

To look out for while walking

While you are walking through the Nagamachi samurai district, be sure to stop by the other small museums, shops and restaurants spread throughout the area. If you visit in winter, an interesting sight to see is the way mud walls are protected by covering them with straw, similar to the way that the trees in Kenrokuen Garden are protected with rope.

Around the Bukeyashiki district

Nearby the Nagamachi samurai district is the Kaga Yuzenkan which stands on the site of a former samurai house. Here you can watch artists painting designs on silk using traditional techniques.

Kanazawa Castle, Kenrokuen Garden and Oyama-jinja Shrine, where the remains of leading general Maeda Toshiie are entombed, are all also within easy walking distance.

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