Nagamachi; Seeing the way of life of the Edo Era samurai

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Narrow stone paved alleys with long ocher earthen walls continuing along the waterways. Nagamachi is a place where you can get a peek at the life of samurai in the Edo Era, and find yourself in the warrior district of those times.
Nagamachi, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa

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Streets where you wonder if you have time warped back to the Edo Era

In the Edo Era, Kanazawa was mentioned along with Osaka and Edo as the Three Great Cities, and remaining is the Nagamachi district where middle and lower class samurai resided, and you can get a taste of those times. Earthen walls run along on either side of the narrow stone-paved alleys, and the district feels as if you have just taken a trip through time back to the Edo Era. A total of 150 meters of irrigation channels flow in Kanazawa and the oldest of these is in Nagamachi as the Onosho channel, and along it are the samurai residences left as they were from the time. You can visit the Kanazawa Ashigaru Shiryokan Museum for free where the residences of the ashigaru (footsoldiers between the farming and warrior classes) have been moved. Various implements are displayed and you can find out about their austere way of life. With the samurai residences on the stone-paved alleys, one of them is the old Kaga Hanshi that is open to the public for free. The nagaya-mon gates that were only allowed to be built by above-middle-class samurai have been restored and within the residence grounds, there are wonderful walking gardens surrounding ponds taking water from the Onosho channel. At the Nagamachi Samurai Residence Rest House, volunteer guides are stationed there to provide information on the history and places to see, and you can also use the rest and washroom facilities there.

The biggest attraction in Nagamachi

The biggest attraction in Nagamachi is the Nomura-ke residence. With its luxurious and gorgeous construction from the paulownia flooring to the cypress sliding doors, it has a splendid garden with rock falls, meandering streams, stone lanterns and a large bridge in cherry granite. It was chosen as the No. 3 Japanese garden in an American journal on gardens. On the 2nd floor, there is a tea room and while drinking matcha tea, you can also view the garden. On the east side of the Nagamachi samurai residences, there is the Hankagai and Kourinbou districts in downtown Kanazawa. Since there are only limited dining establishments in Nagamachi, it is recommended to go to Kourinbou to enjoy a meal.

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