As the largest city in the Hokuriku region, Kanazawa is a lively city with much to offer the traveler. This unique city is filled with amazingly well-preserved historical sites, beautiful gardens, and a thriving art world. Hop on the Hokuriku Shinkansen line and come be charmed by all this city has to offer! Access: From Tokyo - Hokuriku Shinkansen or fly from Narita or Haneda to Komatsu Airport. From Komatsu, you can take a bus to Komatsu Station and ride to Kanazawa or take a limousine bus. From Osaka - Take the Thunderbird train to Kanazawa Station. Getting around Kanazawa, there are many local buses that run frequently, including the Kanazawa Loop Bus that stops at the city`s main tourist attractions.
The Noto Peninsula - also commonly known as the Noto - is a relatively undiscovered part of Ishikawa by visitors, but the area has much to offer for those looking to get a bit off the beaten tourist path. From gorgeous coastal drives to paddle boarding and dolphin watching to fired-up and fun festivals, don't forget to take a quick jaunt to the Noto during your stay around Kanazawa! Access: It is possible to take a train as far north as Anamizu city via the Nanao Line, transfer at Nanao City to the Noto-Nanao Line. However, it is best to go by car and take the Noto-Satoyama Highway.
Due to the northern part of the Japanese Alps stretching into Toyama, this prefecture has stunningly beautiful nature that everyone should take a moment to enjoy. But if the outdoors really isn't your chawan, there's also history and tasty bites to be had in the capital, Toyama City. Ishikawa's next door neighbor of Toyama Prefecture has a lot to offer visitors to Kanazawa, and most can be done as day-trips! chawan = teacup, cup of tea Access: JR Hokuriki Line or Hokuriku Shinkansen from Kanazawa Station to Toyama Station. From Toyama Station, you can transfer to local train lines and buses. If going to Tateyama Station: Kanazawa Station to Toyama Station. Exit at Toyama Station and walk to the Dentetsu-Toyama Station. Get on the Chitetsu Line. This line will eventually turn into the Chitetsu-Tateyama Line (you will not need to transfer!) which will take you to Tateyama Station. From there, you will need to purchase tickets to and from wherever you're visiting along the Tateyama-Kurobe Alpine Route.
Ishikawa's southern neighbor, Fukui Prefecture, is another great place for day-trips to get a little off the beaten path. From beaches with beautifully clear water to a popular dinosaur museum, visitors can take a couple hours from Kanazawa and take in the sites of Fukui. Access: Normal train or Thunderbird train along the Hokuriku Main Line from Kanazawa Station to cities like Fukui City, Echizen, Tsuruga, etc. From those cities, there are local buses. However, for easier navigation during your trip, a car is recommended.
As one of the biggest tourist draws to the Hokuriku region with the traditional houses and its UNESCO World Heritage Site status, Shirakawa-go is a definite must-see when in the area - and its an easy day-trip from Kanazawa! Along with this famous site, however, are many other interesting places to check out like the White Road, Takayama city, and Gokayama. Learn more about all the things you can see and do here! Access: Hokutetsu Bus from Kanazawa Station - more details here: https://www.kanazawastation.com/day-trip-from-kanazawa-to-shirakawa-go-gokayama/ If you're thinking of exploring more than just Shirakawa-go valley, consider renting a car.
During the Edo Period and when the area was ruled by the Maeda clan, the term "Kaga" used to reference most of what is now Ishikawa Prefecture and parts of Toyama Prefecture. Today, saying "the Kaga area" refers to the southern part of Ishikawa Prefecture which includes the cities of Hakusan, Komatsu, and Kaga. This area is well-known for having some of the oldest hot springs in Japan - they were discovered 1300 years ago! In addition to these fantastic hot spring towns, visitors will also find a thriving traditional crafts culture, beautiful beach sunsets, and delicious sake. Access: JR Hokuriku Main Line from Kanazawa Station City buses: Komatsu Bus (Komatsu), Can Bus: http://www.kaga-canbus.jp/english.php (Kaga)