Kanazawa is a historic city in Ishikawa prefecture, Japan. For travellers who want to see one of the best-preserved major Edo-period cities in the country, it is hard to beat.
Kanazawa is one of the long overlooked jewels of Japanese tourism — although not by the Japanese, who visit in droves. Its relatively remote location, on the "wrong" side of the island from the usual Tokyo-Kyoto-Osaka tourist trail, has perhaps unfairly contributed to it attracting so few foreign tourists. Kyoto's offerings of temples and shrines are all very well, but Japanese history and culture is not just about them.
The samurai, the merchants, the geisha, and the lords have all left their mark on Kanazawa in a compact, easily navigable central area. Kanazawa is part of the UNESCO Creative Cities Network as a City of Crafts and Folk Art.