Every city in Japan has its own creation myth and Kanazawa's is particularly poetic. Legend has it that a farmer digging for potatoes one day dug up gold instead. Hence the name Kanazawa, meaning, literally, 'swamp of gold'. This is certainly a city rich in interest, as well as excellent local cuisine. On your Kanazawa holidays, wander through the authentic Naga-machi district with its samurai houses and craft shops, then stroll in Kenrokuen, one of the most beautiful gardens in all Japan. Finally, on any stay in Kanazawa, make sure not to miss the 21st Century Museum of Contemporary Art, built by superstar Japanese architects SANAA.

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