Kanazawa is known for the cuisine, plenty of fish and plenty of great places for dining. I also found that there is a trendy flair to it with modern bars hidden in traditional houses in the bottom of a tiny street, it is a great foodie place
Japanese people are very close to nature and have a very tight relationship with their environment. Most of the bank holidays are related to nature (day of the mountain, day of the sea, day of the nature etc)
Among other items, they love gardens and there are the 3 most beautiful gardens of Japan to be visited once in a lifetime. I had this opportunity while in Kanazawa where is the Kenrokuen located.
I was not sure I would connect with this place as I was afraid of the crowd, potential queues, etc. I went there in the morning and really felt it was a beautiful place. Entrance fee is only Y100.- to help maintain the place. Although there were many people, it never felt crowded and, as always in Japan, people were so respectful that you could still enjoy the silence and peace of the place. a must if you are in the region!!
There was a photo shooting as we were wandering there, it was so cute,
One funny thing, Kanazawa is known to be the golden city, people like gold here and many things are made of gold (even ice creams). I was therefore amused to see that the mushrooms look golden over here!
Last week, October 22nd, were the general elections in Japan. Although a typhoon was going across the country that day, many people paid a visit to the poll.
On that Sunday morning, I was very impressed and even stressed out as a general announcement came over Tokyo. Since the announcement was made in Japanese, I was unsure whether it was about the typhoon security measures and what to do. Fortunately, the end of the call expressed in English that this was a reminder that people should go to vote!
All cities are equipped with public speakers to conduct drills in case of earthquakes and over disasters, very impressive for me but also quite stressful
Here is another interesting one where I could connect to in many ways.http://www.businessinsider.com/negotiating-with-japanese-2014-5/?IR=T
What an interesting read about cultural differences and ways of doing business and integrating. Highly recommended, 38pages so it takes a while but I took it in steps to let it sink and it is worth. Japan communication
Everyday life, food and people, are the things I am mostly interested in when visiting a country, of course the history, the monuments and museums are great but a country is defined by his people and society.
When visiting the Kanazawa Omicho market, … look at the size of the oysters!!
Kanazawa is located 2h40 north west of Tokyo with the shinkansen. Many people call it the “small Kyoto” although locals would challenge this. they tell you that Kyoto is about Emperors while Kanazawa is about Samourai.
This city is not hitted as hard by earthquakes and has suffered as much from the wars therefore you can still find a lot of wooden houses and traditional constructions, along with shrines and monuments, plenty of tiny streets. It is very touristic. I found a lot of Europeans (French and Italian) and Americans (Canada and US) and hardly any Chinese or Koreans which is unusual these days in Japan.
The city is known for the glass, they cut glass in a beautiful way, it became also a trademark as some corporations produce glass for the industry with very tech-saavy methods and the city has become a hot spot for automotive and aviation industries who come here for some of their tools.
Kanazawa is also known as the city of gold. you can even buy golden ice creams!! as you can see below, ice cream with a thin golden sheet over it, very funny (but tasteless)
Shinkansen started operating to Kanazawa a couple of years ago, and, since, it made a huge difference, the number of visitors had a boom and hotels are popping up like mushrooms. It had a massive and positive economical impact although the city feels a bit packed at times because of this.