Shiroyone Senmaida: beautiful terraced rice paddies in Noto Peninsula

Shiroyone Senmaida is a series of terraced rice paddies located on steep slopes in Shiroyone-machi, Wajima City in Ishikawa Prefecture, along National Route 249 that runs from Wajima to Suzu.

 

This stunning landscape that falls into the Japan Sea is a top sightseeing spot on the Noto peninsula. There are 1,004 small rice paddies, all arranged in layers on the slopes. The average surface area of one rice paddy is about 20 square meters, and they cover a total area of around 3.8 hectares. Watering of the terraced rice paddies begins at the end of April every year, and rice is planted from the beginning of May. All of the rice-planting and harvesting jobs are carried out by local people and volunteers as it is not possible to get machinery onto the fields. There is a rice-planting experience event that takes place at the beginning of May every year.

Posted on 21/10/15

Illuminations at Shiroyone Senmaida

Date: 18:00 - 20:00 between 10 October 2015 and 13 March 2016

Venue: Shiroyone Senmaida, Wajima City

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Shiroyone Senmaida Photo credit:Wajima City

During the winter months, the Shiroyone Senmaida rice paddies are lit up in epic style, with a total of 21,000 LEDs spread across them. The lines of LEDs are used all along the paths that separate the rice fields, and their colours change from pink to gold every 30 minutes. Don’t miss out on the fantastic light display set up by the many volunteers, it’s even visible in the rain or snow! Seeing the illuminated fields with snow all around them is an especially magical and rewarding experience and the snow doesn’t obscure the view due to the way the fields face the sea. Be sure to wear warm clothes, however, as the temperature falls quickly at night, and watch your step on the steep slopes down to the terraced paddy fields.

The green rice paddies create a beautiful and bright contrast to the sparkling background of the blue sea during the summer, and there are also glorious views of the terraced paddy fields silhouetted against the evening sky. In contrast to the views of green in spring and summer, the terraced paddies turn a golden colour in the autumn. The view of the landscape of rice stalks bending under the weight of its seeds and swaying in the wind is an undisputed characteristic “scenery of Japan”. Traditional Japanese wedding ceremonies are held against the background of the beautiful rice fields. Local volunteers and the owner of the fields harvest the rice and give their blessings to the couple.

Illuminations at Shiroyone Senmaida Photo credit:Wajima City

How to get to Shiroyone Senmaida from Kanazawa

By Bus

2 hours by Wajima Express Bus from Kanazawa Station. Get off at “Wajima-eki Mae” (in front of Wajima Station). Transfer to the Machino Line, Hokutetsu Oku Noto Bus. Get off at “Shiroyone”.

* There is an information centre in front of Wajima Station.

By Car

1. Take the “Noto Satoyama Kaido” road from Kanazawa and go to the final destination “Noto Airport I.C.”

2. Turn right at the terminal and turn left at the convenience store.

3. Turn right at the end of the road, “Kayabuki-an Mii-no-sato”, and proceed along this road for a while.

4. Continue straight towards the city center and turn right at the “Kawai Chuo” Crossing (National Route 249).

5. Continue on this road for 20 minutes and the Senmaida Pocket Park is on the left-hand side.