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Higashi Chaya District
The Higashi Chaya District is one of the three main “chaya” (tea house) districts in Kanazawa City and is located within walking distance from Kanazawa Station. The district retains its distinct atmosphere which was created at the time when tea houses flourished long ago and is registered as an official important preservation district of historic buildings. Here one is reminded of the elegance of Kyoto’s “Gion” and because even today various events take place in the tea houses, one can often hear the sounds of taiko drums, flutes, and shamisen. Along the streets are souvenir shops with traditional crafts like Ishikawa Prefecture’s specialty wood carving as well as many wonderful traditional Japanese sweet shops and restaurants.
- 1 Higashiyama, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa
- Contact No.
- From JR Kanazawa Station take Hokutetsu Bus on the No. 11, 12, or 88 service routes for 8 minutes and get off at the Hashiba-cho bus stop from which it’s a 5 minute walk. Or take the Loop Bus for 11 minutes and get off at the Hashiba-cho (Koban-mae) bus stop from which it’s a five minute walk.
- Opening Hours / Holidays
- Depends on Shop
- Time Required
- 90 minutes
- Admission fee
- Admission Free to Walk around the District
※ Some information is displayed in Japanese and machine-translated English, which may not be accurate.
For the latest information, please check the official website for each spot.
Visit a Traditional Tea House
Follow the cobblestone path and you’ll find chaya (tea houses) that are still running through modern times. It is possible to view a few of these for a price. The famous national important cultural property registered chaya of “Shima,” and the largest chaya in Kanazawa, “Kaikaro” are especially popular among travelers.
O-chaya “Shima” is a tea house built in 1820 and one of the few relics of its particular chaya architecture style left in Japan. No amendments have been made since its original construction making it a valuable resource to know how the common people lived back in the Edo period and is now protected as a cultural heritage site and held in great academic acclaim.
Specialty Shops with Gold Foil, Kaga-style Treats, and Traditional Crafts
Ishikawa Prefecture is well known for its wide variety of traditional crafts. Along the streets of the Higashi Chaya District, one can find many stores with traditional goods such as those who deal with the largest portion of gold foil in Japan, those with “Kutani Yaki” pottery, others with the local specialty of “Kaga-fu” wheat gluten cake, and so on. You’re sure to find the perfect memory or souvenir.
Take a Break with some Delicious Traditional Japanese Sweets and Light Meals
One can’t go wrong at lunch or during a break in the Higashi Chaya District with the many long-standing traditional Japanese sweets shops and restaurants. Breathe a sigh of relief with the famous “gold leaf ice cream” or elegant traditional Japanese sweets popular among travelers. In addition there are plenty of other places to relax like sushi restaurants that use local products from Kanazawa.