Kanazawa, Japan May 2021


Kanazawa is a city of exquisite Japanese culture; sometimes referred to as ‘little Kyoto’.  The main attraction is Kenrokuen, one of three most famous gardens in Japan and considered by many to be the most beautiful of them all.

Kanazawa means ‘stream of gold’ and this area produces 99% and 100% of Japan’s gold and silver leaf. It is a small city and easily walkable for adults.  We will also explore ancient and modern cultural sights in the mountains surrounding Kanazawa.


The Four Seasons of Kanazawa


En Plein Air with Cilla Campbell
I am a graduate of the National Art School and conduct courses in drawing, painting and relief printmaking at the WEA, Sydney and elsewhere.

Cilla Campbell



  • 9 x nights accomm/breakfast in 5* Japanese and Western style hotel with four distinctive Japanese gardens
  • full day guided orientation tour of Kanazawa
  • full day guided tour to the historic samurai villages of Kaga and Yamanaka 
  • full day guided tour through the spiritual worlds of Kanazawa 
  • full day guided tour of Gokayama, a UNESCO heritage site
  • Utatsuyama – a relaxing day in nature 
  • 6 lunches;  2 dinners
  • art sessions around Kanazawa (and impromptu sessions on guided tour days if time permits)
  • 1 x day hop on/off bus pass around downtown Kanazawa

21st Century Museum




  • smart casual clothing and sensible walking shoes
  • Kanazawa offers many shopping opportunities if you forget anything!

WHAT TO BRING: art materials

Suggestions will be forwarded following your booking


  • meals/beverages not indicated in the itinerary
  • travel insurance
  • pre/post tour travel



Ishikawa Museum of Traditional Arts and Crafts exhibits all 36 local crafts and hosts workshops which must be reserved in advance.

If requested a 2021 workshop calendar will be forwarded to you and reservations made on your behalf.  Workshops are an optional extra.

Kanazawa is famous for its cuisine.
Dietary requirements are the responsibility of the traveller.


It is essential you walk independently at a moderate pace.


Is highly recommended


We recommend Jenny Tucker, Travel Partners for all  flights as well as pre/post tour travel. 
Email: jennyt@travelpartners.com.au
Phone: 0437 388 887




  • Tour begins on arrival in Kanazawa.  You will be greeted at Kanazawa station and transferred to our accommodation.  Travel time from Tokyo by Hokuriku Shinkansen is approx 2.5 hours.  If arriving in Tokyo at a similar time to Cilla you will be escorted from Haneda.
  • Group welcome dinner.


A full day orientation tour of Kanazawa with our private guide and vehicle:

  • Omicho market 
  • Higashiyama. Home to temples and numerous galleries for emerging and traditional artisans
  • Kazue Machi. One of the traditional geisha districts
  • Lunch at Sekitei restaurant
  • Walk off lunch exploring Kanazawa Castle Park, Gyokusenin and Kenrokuen
  • Free choice for dinner

Kanazawa Castle


  • Morning art session with Cilla 
  • Bento box lunch
  • Free afternoon with hop on/off city bus pass covering downtown Kanazawa
  • Free choice for dinner. We suggest you join us for a small restaurant experience in Shintechi. A unique location with a mix of local, traditional and international foods and drinks served by chefs in their 6-8 seater restaurants. Choose your own food and pay as you eat in different venues. 

Day 3


  • Free morning to visit galleries or artisan workshops.  You may prefer the tranquility of the hotel gardens (after a soak in the onsen)
  • Afternoon art session with Cilla 
  • Free choice for lunch and dinner



Discovering Kaga and Yamanaka, the home of two traditional Kanazawan arts – Japanese natural lacquerware and Kutani ceramics 

  • Depart 9:30am by private vehicle with our guide
  • Stroll along the Kakusenkei, an ancient path along the river for poets and artisans 
  • After crossing the Daishoji River we’ll enjoy a traditional foot bath
  • Exceptional lunch at Alla Contadina
  • Visit Kutaniyaki Pottery Museum and learn the history of Kaga
  • Visit the Museum of Snow and Ice 
  • Return to our hotel late afternoon
  • Free choice for dinner

Day 5


What are the spiritual worlds and histories associated with Kanazawa?
Today our private guide and vehicle will lead us on a day long stroll through faith.

  • We begin at Rokuto no Hiromi in Teramachi
  • Visit Korinji, a Buddhist temple established in 1651
  • We’ll stop in Teramachi to discuss its significance and Sakurabashi Park overlooking the San River
  • Lunch at Korinji restaurant
  • A Zen exploration and reflection at the Suzuki Museum. This tranquil and architecturally renowned space offers insight into the life and work of DT Suzuki, the professor who was first to explain Zen to the West
  • Then to Kanazawa Shinto Shrine, noted as the spot where Kanazawa was founded
  • Tour ends in the Turrell Room at the 21st Century Contemporary Museum of Art
  • Free choice for dinner

Suzuki Museum



  • Morning art session with Cilla beginning by the Sai River
  • Bento box lunch
  • Free afternoon 
  • Free choice for dinner

Day 7


Designated a UNESCO World Heritage site, Gokayama is a mountain village dedicated to maintaining and preserving its traditional architecture, thatched roofs and rice fields.

8:30am departure by private vehicle with guide and wonderful vistas as we head into the mountains.

  • Ride the Yuran Ferry (30 mins) 
  • Drive through beautiful scenery to the hamlet of Suganuma
  • Visit Gokayama with traditional kayabuki (thatched A-frame) roofs of this community
  • Exquisite lunch at the renowned L’Ensoleiller
  • Visit Kotokuji in Fukumitsu, known as the Temple of Light with exceptional works of Munakata Shiko and other artists
  • Free choice for dinner

Day 8


  • Spend our last day walking in nature in Utatsuyama for an unsurpassed view of Kanazawa and surroundings. This urban mountain, full of nature, is perfect for our final art making experience.  Views to the Kahoku Lagoon, the Sea of Japan and the central part of the city from the summit.
  • Optional lunch at popular Hiyoke Mame cafe in Utatsuyama
  • Farewell dinner – shabu shabu 

Day 9



Our tour ends today after breakfast.  For a minimal cost have your luggage transferred anywhere in Japan.  This enables you to explore an area unencumbered before arriving at your next destination.




Due to the 2020 postponement of this tour, prices are to be confirmed for 2021.

  • $500.00 discount applies if you are not participating in art making sessions
  • a 50% deposit will secure your booking and final payment due 11th February 2021
  • cancellation and full refund is possible when a replacement booking is forthcoming.  The following charges apply:
    • 90 days or more – forfeit of deposit until a replacement booking is made
    • less than 90 days  – forfeit 100% of tour cost unless a replacement reservation is made




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