Happy new year, I hope 2018 will be a better year for everyone. This is my first post in 2018 and my hope for 2018 is that I won’t procrastinate anymore (especially when it involves writing and editing the photos. I want to post this travel to Kanazawa a long time ago, but then I got lazy and I went back to Indonesia (and the poor internet connection). I apologize for that. If you don’t remember, I posted about Kanazawa last year and I promised to write another post about it, so there you go – Oyama Shrine, Maeda Toshiie, and Nagamachi Samurai District.
Actually, you might know that I love all those samurai games like 戦国無双 and it series and Maeda Toshiie is one of my favourite samurai (after Date Masamune, of course). So, when I went to Kanazawa, Oyama Shrine was one of my must-go place. Actually the shrine is really humble, not that colorful as Tochigi in Nikko and not as big as Kiyomizudera in Kyoto.
(Maeda Toshiie statue in Oyama Shrine)
Oyama shrine is dedicated for Maeda Toshiie and it can be distinguished by the gate’s unique architecture. The gate was designed by a Dutch architect and they combine the Asian and Western architecture.
(If there’s no torii in front of the Shrine, I can’t tell if it’s a shrine or not)
Once you climb all the stairs, you’ll see the main shrine building and the statue of Maeda Toshiie.
Utatsuyama Park and Temple Area
From Oyama Jinja, I went to Utatsuyama by taxi (since there were 4 of us) and originally I had no plan going to this place, but one of the tourist information in Nagamachi suggested me to go there.
Utatsuyama park is located in the summit of the mountain (with an altitude of 141m
I did not go visit the temple, so I can’t really say anything about the temple. The sight from the summit is pretty but there’s nothing else at the park. If you go during spring, you can see some flowers probably.
Nagamachi Samurai District
Nagamachi samurai district located at the foot of Kanazawa Castle. It used to be a resident for high class samurai and their families. The area is now still preserve their originality, you can find water canal, brick wall, and houses with traditional atmosphere.
Not all houses are open for public. Most of them are private property, meaning you can’t just enter and take photo. Some places are open for public, such as Nomura-ke. Nomura-ke is a high-rank samurai house and it has a small, but beautiful garden inside.
and some photos from the garden
The admission fee is 550¥. There are also Maeda Museum and Shinise Museum near the Nomura-ke. Also, if you want to see the housing for lower-rank samurai, you can also go to Ashigaru Museum. All museum are mostly 5-10minutes walk from Nomura-ke and of course, it will cost you another admission fee.
Because we don’t have the time to walk around and check all museum, we choose to walk around Nagamachi and look for food. Even if you don’t go to the museums, the scenery around Nagamachi is really nice and you can feel the old-school atmosphere around the area.
If you go walk around the small canal, you can find restaurants and cafe, which have a mix between modern and historic feel.
There’re are actually a lot of places to visit in Kanazawa and I’d love to visit them again. One of the place is the Ninjadera or Myoryuji Temple (妙立寺, Myōryūji).
The temple is famous for having Ninja trap and trick inside. You need to call and book before you begin your tour inside. The tour is approximately an hour and it’s only in Japanese. Even if you bring someone who can translate for you, they’re not allowed to talk inside because the monks need to focus. The admission fee is 1000¥ per person.
I’d like to recommend Nagamachi and Oyama Jinja, especially if you love to learn about history, samurai, and Maeda Toshiie. After all, the influence of Maeda clan in Kanazawa is quite big.
Utatsuyama is not really recommended, because it’s quite far from Kanazawa eki and unless you’re interested in the temples in Utatsuyama, the view from the summit is so-so (depends on the weather).
And that’s all for the post today. I hope to see you in the next post. As usual, your comments are very much appreciated.