IMG_2716e.psd[Neagari-Matsu Pine Tree] Approximately forty pine roots rise two meters above ground. Legend says that this pine was designed by the 13th Lord Maeda. After growing the tree on a pile a soil, he later removed it to reveal the roots. The green moss around the tree is beautiful in the summer.

Our Beloved Garden


Many people associate Kanazawa city with its stunning Japanese garden, Kenroku-En. One of the three great gardens of Japan, guidebooks often list it as a must-see attraction. The three Chinese characters that make up its name reveal the philosophy behind the garden. The first character, “ken”, means to hold multiple functions. The middle one, “roku”, is the number six. The final character, “en”, signifies garden. All together the name literally means “a garden with six functions”. So what are these functions, and who decided them? They are derived from a Chinese poem composed about the nineteen great garden of China. Kenroku-En has six features in direct contradiction of each other.
The closest English equivalent to these pairings would be spaciousness and profoundness, artificialness and antiquity, water fountain landscapes and mountain panoramas.
This once-private garden for Lord Maeda officially opened to the public in 1872. An entrance free was introduced in 1976, though residents of Ishikawa prefecture are exempt on weekends. It is also free to everyone during New Year’s and days designated for enjoying the beauty of nature, such as during the cherry blossom season and harvest moon. Located in the heart of downtown, its not uncommon to see the residents of nearby homes walking or jogging around the premise. The garden is not only a popular destination for tourists, but a beloved park for the citizens as well.

  • Open: 7:00-18:00 (Mar - Oct 15); 8:00-17:00 (Oct 16 - Feb)
  • Admission: ¥310 (adults 18 and over); ¥100 (children between 6 and 17); Free (seniors 65 and over)
  • Free for early birds: 5:00-7:00 (Mar / Sep / Oct 1 -15); 5:00-8:00 (Oct 16 – 31); 4:00-8:00 (Apr -Aug); 6:00-8:00 (Nov –Feb)

Kotoji-Tohro and Niji-Bashi

The Kotoji-Toro lantern seen from the Niji-Bashi bridge over Kasumiga-Ike pond is one of the garden’s most majestic views. The lantern is likened to the Koto lute, while the bridge supports its strings. A one minute walk from the Katsurazaka-Guchi entrance, this landscape is a must see!


The largest pond in the garden is 5.8 square kilometers around and 1.5 meters at its deepest point. The pond is lined with famous structures, like Kotoji-Toro lantern, the Niji-Bashi bridge, Karasaki-Matsu, Sazae-Yama hill, Uchihashi-Tei tea house, and the Horai-Jima island, topped off with breathtaking reflections on its surface.


The 13th Lord Maeda obtained the seeds for the Japanese black pine trees near Lake Biwa-Ko, which is known for its “Eight Views of Omi”. In the winter, these trees are adorned with snow ropes to protect their branches from the weight of the snow.

Meiji Kinen-no-Hyo

This monument is dedicated to the local warriors who died in the Satsuma Rebellion. The five and a half meter tall bronze statue of Yamato Takeru No Mikoto (a legendary prince) was built in the Meiji Era, 1880, and is said to be the first portrait bronze statue in Japan.


The bridge over the stream from Kasumiga-Ike was named after the wedge form wild geese fly in. Each of the eleven stones are cut into pentagons or hexagons, earning it the nickname Kikko-Bashi (tortoise shell bridge), with the tortoise symbolizing longevity. It’s said that those who cross the bridge are guaranteed a long life. Unfortunately, visitors can no longer walk on the rocks due to abrasion.


The sight of the blooming blossoms from the bridge is amazing, hence the name “flower viewing bridge”. Located in front of Seisonkaku villa, you’ll see Sakura cherry blossoms, Kakitsubata irises, Tsutsuji azaleas and more along the stream.


In this 3,000 square meter orchard, 20 kinds and 200 plum blossoms bloom between January and March, signifying that spring is coming soon.


Located beside the Hisago-Ike pond, this house is named after the Yugao (bottle gourd) style openwork which decorates its walls. The house was built in 1774 on the island in the pond. Unfortunately, its rooms are not open to the public.


The oldest fountain in Japan. The water is supplied from Kasumiga-Ike pond, with the water pressure a result of the difference in elevation between the surface of the pond and the fountain. The jet is about 3.5 meter high.

Published: January 31, 2011

Kenrokuen / 1, Kenrokuen, Kanazawa / Map

Castle-Viewing Restaurant & Sweets Bar


Kanazawa >> Kenrokuen Area

Kenjotei [茶屋 見城亭]

The name Kenjotei literally means a “castle-viewing house”. It’s located just next to Katsurazakaguchi toll booth in Kenrokuen garden. They offer you great views of Kanazawajo castle from its wide, window seating area. Enjoy an excellent meal or a simple coffee break on the second floor, or just grab a dessert at their sweets bar on the first floor!

1-19, Kenrokumachi, (Edomachidori street in Kenrokuen), Kanazawa
Tel 076-263-7141 / LinkIconE-mail

Recommended menu: Vanilla flavored soft serve covered with a gold leaf 1,000 yen (1F “Grab and Go” Sweets Bar); Kuzukiri gelatinous noodle dessert made from kudzu root 800 yen, Jibuni udon noodle 1,000 yen (2F Cafe & Restaurant) *Tax included / Open: 9:00-17:00 (open everyday) / Credit cards: Most accepted / Languages: Limited English spoken; English menu


Kanazawa City >>
Kanazawa Station Area

Western-style room
Hotel Nikko Kanazawa [ホテル日航金沢]

Business and leisure travelers will appreciate that the hotel is conveniently located in front of JR Kanazawa Station and within walking distance of some of the most famous tourist spots in Kanazawa, Japan. Also, at 130m, it is also the tallest hotel in the Hokuriku area.

2-15-1 Hon-machi, Kanazawa
Tel 076-234-1111 / Fax 076-234-8802 / LinkIconE-mail

Rates: Visit their website! You can get the best flexible rate. / Check in:14:00; Check out: 12:00 /Credit cards: Most accepted / Languages: English spoken / Internet: free / LAN: High-speed cable and wireless / Facilities:
Lobby Lounge FOUTAIN (1F); Buffet Restaurant THE GARDEN HOUSE (2F); Japanese Restaurant BENKAY (6F); Main Bar VOL DE NUIT (29F); Teppan Grill ICHO (29F); Chinese Restaurant TOH-LEE (29F); Sky Lounge LE GRAND CHARIOT (30F); European Cuisine La PLAGE (30F)


Kanazawa City >>
Kanazawa Station Area

Guest House
Guest House Pongyi [ゲストハウス ポンギー]

First guest house in Kanazawa opened by a previous monk. 'Compassion' is his motto! Good reputation for homely guest house.

2-22, Rokumai-Machi, Kanazawa
Tel 076-225-7369 / LinkIconE-mail / LinkIcon

Rates: [Dormitory] 2,800 yen ~; [Private room] 5,500 ~ 10,000 yen (All rates include tax, and 100 yen donation to aid children in Asia. Breakfast not included.) / Check in: 15:00; Check out: 10:00 / Credit cards: Not accepted / Languages: Limited English spoken / *Communal refrigerator, kitchen, laundry machine (100 yen), locker and shower room. / *Free internet & WiFi