Kanazawa Station is housed inside a well-organized, modern building which also contains many shops, restaurants, and also a hotel. On either side of the building are pleasant plazas which are popular meeting spots and the design of the east plaza in particular with its huge gate and dome has made the station itself a popular tourist attraction. In this article we will introduce the most useful facilities in Kanazawa Station and explain their locations. Because the station building is not too big you will find it very easy to find everything you need.
Kanazawa Station has an East Gate and a West Gate and a central concourse that runs in a straight line between them. All of the station building’s facilities are on either side of this concourse. All of the railway facilities are on the south side of this concourse. To learn more about the railway facilities you can read our article Kanazawa Station Map – Finding Your Way.
A large part of the station building is also taken up by a shopping mall called Hyakubangai. This has three main sections : “Rinto” on the north side of the central concourse, “Anto” on the south side, and the Kutsurogikan which occupies the west end of the building. As well as shops and market stalls several useful facilities are contained inside the Rinto and Anto sections.
The Tourist Information Center is located on the north side of the concourse in the Rinto section, and very close to the East Exit. Here you can pick up free maps, bus timetables, and event information, get help booking hotels, and even borrow an umbrella if it is raining. One section of the inquiry counter is staffed by English speaking volunteers from the Kanazawa Goodwill Guide Network. This network also offers a free guide service with courses that cover all the main tourist districts. However tours must be booked at least 2 weeks in advance so be sure to contact them in advance of your visit.
The Tourist Information Center also has a luggage delivery service. You can have your luggage delivered directly to your hotel in Kanazawa or to other locations in Ishikawa Prefecture. The fee for same day delivery to a hotel in Kanazawa is 600 yen, and to other cities in Ishikawa the fee is 800 yen.
Opening Hours: 8.30 – 20.00
Popular Hotels near Kanazawa Station
Foreign Currency Exchange
There is a Travelex foreign currency exchange shop located inside Nippon Travel Agency which is on the north side of the concourse in the Rinto section.
Opening Hours: 10:00 – 20:00
Lost or Found
Kanazawa Station does not have a dedicated Lost or Found office. If you have found or lost something in the railway station then you can make inquiries at the JR West Ticket Office near the shinkansen gates or the Fare Adjustment Office near the gates for the local lines. If you have found or lost something in the Hyakubangai shopping mall you should go to one of the information counters in the Rinto or Anto sections.
Convenience Store & ATM Cash Machines
Just inside the West Exit and on the north side of the station concourse is a 7-Eleven convenience store. There are two Seven Bank ATM cash machines here that accept foreign bank cards. You can use any of the following cards with these ATMs Visa, Plus, MasterCard, Maestro, Cirrus, UnionPay, American Express, JCB, Discover, and Diners Club International. The ATMs are easy to use and have guidance in the following languages: Japanese, English, Chinese, Korean, Thai, Malay, Indonesian, Vietnamese, French, German, and Portuguese.
Opening Hours: 5.00 – 1.00
There is a post office inside the Anto section which is on the north side of the central concourse. As well as the usual postal services, post office ATM machines accept foreign credit cards such as VISA, MasterCard, American Express, Diners Club and JCB. Post Office ATMs have both audio and visual English guidance and are very easy to use.
Opening Hours: 9.00 – 19.00
Should you need their assistance, there is a Railway Police Office on a corridor on the south side of the main station concourse between the shinkansen ticket gates and the gates for the regular trains.
You can also find a police box (called a “Koban” in Japanese) outside the station’s East Gate on the other side of the taxi rank.
Bus Terminals & Taxis
You can find bus terminals and taxis on both the east and west sides of the station. For more information about taxis see our article Taxis in Kanazawa. Use the East Gate bus terminal for local tourist buses and highway express buses run by the West JR Bus and Hokutetsu Bus companies. This bus terminal also has an excellent transportation information center.
The West Gate bus terminal has stops for Willer Express buses bound for Tokyo, and shuttle buses for Komatsu Airport.
The plazas on the east and west sides of the station are very nicely designed. On the east side are the station’s most famous structures: the Motenashi Dome and the Tsuzumi-mon Gate.
The huge Motenashi Dome covering the plaza is constructed of an aluminium and glass framework which offers shelter from Kanazawa’s frequent rainfall and lets in natural light. Beneath the dome is a pleasant water garden with plenty of seating which functions as a meeting spot. Just beyond the Tsuzumi-mon Gate is a fountain which functions as a water clock and spells out welcoming messages.
On the west side of the station is a large garden area which also has plenty of seating. There is a curious abstract monument here which was erected in 1989 to celebrate the 100th anniversary of the official establishment of Kanazawa as a modern city. The name of the monument is “Yuuyou” which could be translated as “Eternal Flight” and its shape, which leans dramatically to one side, is meant to express the city reaching forward into the future from the strong basis of its past.
Article and original photos by Michael Lambe. All rights reserved.