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Photo By: PIXTA/ sorairo
Region
Chubu
Island
Honshu
Largest City
Kanazawa
Population
1,180,935

Hanayome Noren Train

Step inside a train gallery of colorful bridal curtain designs while savoring the panoramic view along the Noto Peninsula.

By Alma Reyes

Japan Rail has come up with a number of intriguing theme trains from north to south that surely entice all travelers to explore every region with an added spice.

In Kanazawa, the enchanting Hanayome Noren sightseeing train runs twice daily from Kanazawa Station to Wakura Onsen in the Noto Peninsula with stops at Hakui and Nanao. The two-car train that seats 52 passengers is most admirable for its interior decoration of traditional motifs reflecting the arts of the Hokuriku region, namely Wajima lacquerware, Kaga-Yuzen silk dyeing, and Kanazawa gold leaf. The name Hanayome Noren refers to “bridal curtain,” based on Ishikawa Prefecture’s ancient custom of presenting brides with sophisticated noren curtains as a celebratory gift of eternal happiness.

Interior Design Elements

Hanayome Noren Tourist Train

Photo by: PIXTA/ Kimi3 A traditional atmosphere awaits passengers.

Each of the eight compartments in Car 1 is designed with colorful seasonal patterns of Yuzen dyed kimono—cherry and plum blossom, dianthus, fan painting, clematis, chrysanthemum, autumn foliage, azure, and bamboo—segregated by wooden poles that swerve along the aisles. The entrance to the car displays Wajima lacquerware and stunning Kanazawa gold leafing on the walls. The aisles are carpeted with stepping stone patterns found in Japanese gardens. A small glass-encased exhibition display of traditional crafts and souvenir corner are also located in this car.

Car 2 features a more spacious layout with some rotating seats facing the window. Ornamented likewise, with gold leaf and lacquerware, and carpet design of a flowing river, the coach hosts events, parties and performances. The train exterior is a sight to relish with its red and black tints modeled after lacquerware, and silk kimono patterns of flowers, maple leaves, and butterflies.

On Board the Train

Hanayome Noren Tourist Train

Photo by: PIXTA/ Kimi3 Itadakimasu!

Meals can be ordered online, including local Kaga cuisine in charming o-bento boxes, available in train car 2, and a confectionery set of cakes and cookies, available in train cars 1 and 3. For the more alcohol-inclined passengers, train car 4 offers Junmai-ginjo pure sake from the Noto sake brewery Sogen Shuzo, paired with popular local side dishes.

The entire journey from Kanazawa Station to Wakura Onsen takes about an hour and twenty-five minutes. On the way, you may get off at Hakui to head to the beach, Cosmo Isle Space Museum and shrines and temples. Nanao is worth exploring for the Hanayome Noren Museum. The museum houses a wide array of elegant bridal curtains from the end of the Edo to Meiji periods. The last stop, Wakura Onsen is a luxury hot spring resort flanked by numerous ryokans.

Things To Know

TRAIN FEES

Book your seats in advance as all seats are reserved. Tickets can be bought at any JR Midori-no-Monoguchi center. 

Full fare until Wakura Onsen costs ¥2,800. Onboard meals cost about ¥2,000. Check the website for the current timetable and prices.

How To Get There

Address

By train

Board the train from JR Kanazawa Station

Where To Stay

Via Inn Kanazawa (JR West Group)
  • 1-1 Kinoshimbomachi, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0858 Japan
  • ¥7,648 - ¥17,480
  • 0.1 km
APA Hotel Kanazawa-Ekimae
  • 1-9-28 Hiroka, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0031 Japan
  • ¥8,300 - ¥24,800
  • 4.29/5 (7,672 reviews)
  • 0.2 km
Hotel Kanazawa
  • 1-1 Horikawashimmachi, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0849 Japan
  • ¥9,855 - ¥128,250
  • 4.43/5 (1,204 reviews)
  • 0.2 km
Dormy Inn Kanazawa
  • 2-25 Horikawashimmachi, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-0849 Japan
  • ¥14,135 - ¥31,240
  • 4.64/5 (11,170 reviews)
  • 0.2 km
ANA Crowne Plaza Kanazawa
  • 16-3 E-Enue-Kuraunpurazahoterukanazawa, Kanazawa-shi, Ishikawa, 920-8518 Japan
  • ¥10,800 - ¥22,000
  • 4.56/5 (2,875 reviews)
  • 0.2 km

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