JAPAN TRAVEL: Nomura Clan Samurai Home in Kanazawa City
It may only be a portion, but the Nomura Clan Samurai House is still as majestic as ever.
Tucked away in Kanazawa’s Buke Yashiki district is the ancient site of a samurai house owned by one of the most powerful families in Kanazawa during the Edo period. Nomura Denbei Nobusada, one of the high-ranked followers of then-Lord Maeda Toshiie, was granted what started as a one-thousand Koku of rice (one Koku of rice weighed about 150 kilograms), and about 1,000 tsubo (3,305 square meters) of an estate for each of his descendants.
While it is called a samurai house, the Nomuras were actually a merchant family who, because of their allegiance to the Kaga clan (led by the Maedas), had access to the same sort of finances as samurais. The house pretty much blends in with the rest of the houses in Naga-machi (located in the Buke Yashiki district), which were all built during the Edo period.
The bit that’s left of the Nomura estate exudes regalness and class that could only be rivaled by similar places in Japan, like Matsumoto. Each part of the house is carefully preserved, maintaining a standard that even samurais would appreciate.
The house also features a stunning garden, which has earned the right to be called one of Japan’s Top Gardens in ROTH Tei-en’s Journal of Japanese Gardening. The same garden has been given two stars by the Michelin Guide for Japan in 2009.
You can see this garden in all its majesty from the first floor. For a more refreshing view, it’s best to go up to the second floor of the house and take a peak from the balcony, or enjoy the same view while having a tea ceremony for only ¥300.
Getting to Nomura Clan Samurai House
Getting to the Nomura Clan Samurai House is easy enough. Take a bus from the JR Kanazawa Station and get off at Korinbo. The Buke Yashiki district is a 15-minute walk from the stop, while the house itself is only a two to three-minute walk from where you enter the Buke Yashiki district.
Address: 1 Chome, 3-32, Naga-machi, Kanazawa
Operating hours: 8:30 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. (April to September); 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (October to March) *Last admission: 30 minutes before closing; closed on December 26 and 27
Admission fee: ¥550 for adults, ¥400 for children aged 15 to 17, ¥250 for children aged 7 to 14 (tea ceremony has a separate ¥300 fee)
Written by Andronico Del Rosario
Supported by GCP
This first appeared in Philippine Primer Magazine Vol. 33 – December issue.