When is the best time to visit Kanazawa?

Posted on 01/07/2015

You might think the answer is the summer time, but personally I would recommend April, specifically the first or second week in April. The main attraction of Kanazawa is Kenrokuen gardens, known as one of the three most beautiful gardens in Japan. From early to mid-April, both the borders and inside of the garden are full of beautiful cherry blossoms. People coming from other countries always enquire as to where they should go to see cherry blossoms in Japan, and Kenrokuen is without a doubt one of the best places to see them. But be careful, a large number of tourists come to Kanazawa during this season, so make sure you book your train ticket and accommodation well in advance. Besides Kenrokuen, there is another spot around Mt Utatsu where you can see beautiful cherry blossoms. The temperature at this time of year is typically between 10 and 20 degrees Celsius with little rain, making it pleasant to stroll around the town.

If you are unable to find accommodation during this period, try the first week of June as an alternative. Why the first week of June? The Hyakumangoku Festival, the biggest festival in the Hokuriku area, takes place, usually over the first weekend of June. A four-hour parade is held from Kanazawa station to Kanazawa Castle and you will see hundreds of stalls in the street. The city of Kanazawa is usually relatively quiet and peaceful but everyone gets together to have fun in the festival. The festival used to take place over the second weekend in June but in order to avoid the rainy season, normally between mid-June and early July, it is now held over the first weekend of June, when the weather tends to be mostly sunny.