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Photo By: Banku
Largest City

21st Century Museum of Modern Art

Concoction of tradition and wild, beautiful modern art. A must if you're traveling to Kanazawa.

A historical place that is also known for exhibiting modern art is a bit ironic. However, it’s amazing how Kanazawa City  gives you the best of both worlds.

The 21st Century Museum not only features Japanese artists but various artistic expressions from around the globe, connecting the old city of Kanazawa, in Ishikawa prefecture, to the outside of Japan.

The “Princess of Polka Dots” Yayoi Kusama and the creator of “Campbell’s Soup Cans,” Andy Warhol are just some of the prominent artists included in its collection. The eccentric, yet refreshing artworks in this museum will surely get a lot of creative minds pumping.

To capture or not to

Snapping a photo (or a selfie) in exhibitions can be tricky since it’s usually not allowed for copyright reasons. The 21st Century Museum is not an exemption, but there are areas where photography and videography is permitted. A map is available to guide its visitors about these places, hence no need to wonder if you can have your picture taken or not.

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Another highlight, Leandro Erlich’s “The Swimming Pool” is one of the museum’s popular permanent exhibitions and photo-op spots. Its unique concept makes it possible to see people walk underwater, triggering visitors to get imaginative with their poses.

Activities and programs

Aside from its marvelous artworks, the museum is also enthusiastic in getting the community involved with their activities. While tourists may not be able to join in on their kid and family programs, they are welcome to take part in various seasonal events throughout the year. The museum holds fun events in its “open space” twice a year, in spring and autumn.

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Besides the art themselves, the museum also has on site:

  • Art library
  • Gift shop
  • Cafe Restaurant “Fusion21”
  • Nursery and kids studio
  • Tea rooms

After 6

Despite closing its gallery at 6 p.m. (8 p.m., Friday and Saturday), tourists can still enjoy some areas in 21st Century from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.  The public zone, People’s Gallery, Theater 21, and its cafe are just some of the places open for that period.

Geared toward the modern person’s life, the museum does an impeccable job of not only displaying works but also making the experience an interactive one.

To get even more artsy, visit our Art & Design tourism section.


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Things To Know


Closed: Mondays | Open weekly: Exhibition Zone 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. (Open until 8 p.m. on Fri. and Sat.) | Public Zone 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.


Prices depend on exhibition, but generally range from ¥300 to ¥1,000.

How To Get There


Japan, 〒920-0962 Ishikawa-ken, Kanazawa-shi, Hirosaka, 1 Chome−2−1, 金沢21世紀美術館

By train

From Tokyo station, Kanazawa City is about 3-hours by the Hokuriku bullet train. From Kanazawa station, there are a lot of bus options to choose from. (See below.)

By bus

Hokutetsu Local Line: If you are taking a ride from Terminal 3 or 6, get off at Hirosaka 21st Century Museum and from there it’s a 1 minute walk. You can also hop in to the buses at Terminal 8-10, stopping at Korinbo (Atrio-Mae) and then walk for 5 minutes.

Kanazawa Loop Bus: From Terminal 7, get off at Hirosaka 21st Century Museum.

Take note that 21st Century Museum (and other facilities) offers a discount, if you happen to purchase a one-day Bus Ticket. For more information, check it on kanazawa21.jp and en.visitkanazawa.jp/ .

Where To Stay

Kaname Inn Tatemachi
  • 41 Tatemachi, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0997 Japan
  • ¥7,838 - ¥17,100
  • 4.2/5 (74 reviews)
  • 0.4 km
Koko Hotel Premier Kanazawa Korinbo
  • 1-2-16 Korimbo, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0961 Japan
  • ¥7,200 - ¥11,700
  • 4.23/5 (85 reviews)
  • 0.5 km
Kanazawa Tokyu Hotel
  • 2-1-1 Korimbo, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0961 Japan
  • ¥10,780 - ¥17,000
  • 4.58/5 (2,112 reviews)
  • 0.5 km
Hotel MyStays Kanazawa Katamachi
  • 1-10-18 Katamachi, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0981 Japan
  • ¥4,750 - ¥7,100
  • 3.91/5 (235 reviews)
  • 0.5 km
Henn na Hotel Kanazawa Korinbo
  • 1-2-32 Korimbo, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0961 Japan
  • ¥6,460 - ¥17,400
  • 4.32/5 (328 reviews)
  • 0.5 km