Higashi Chaya, Kanazawa’s authentic tea-house district

24 Feb 2017 in Discover Japan

Welcome to Higashi Chaya, a picturesque neighbourhood that's a focal point of Japanese heritage...


At one time Kanazawa’s tea houses were to be found all over the city, but nowadays they are concentrated in three districts, of which Higashi is the largest.

Higashi Chaya disctrict

The neighbourhood of Higashi Chaya is the eastern part of the city – higashi means east in Japanese – and more specifically, to the south-east of Kanazawa Castle. This district lies alongside the Asano river and is characterised by its long streets lined with wooden houses, representative of the Edo period in their appearance and their typical two-storey construction.

A true heritage

Higashi’s tea houses are easily recognisable by their architectural style that was unusual for the Edo period, because at that time, the tea houses were among the few categories of buildings to obtain permission to be built on two floors.

Higachi Chaya tea house

For this reason, they are now designated as an Important Preservation Districts. These houses are distinguished by their superb external latticework at ground-floor level, and their upstairs room in which the guests might sometimes be greeted by geishas.

Kanazawa tea house

And while some of the houses have been refurbished and turned into restaurants or gift shops, others still welcome visitors at tea time in the purest tradition.

Hotel in Kanazawa

Located some 40 minutes by bus from Hoshino Resort KAI Kaga, the Higashi district is visited for its beauty, its tranquillity, its authenticity, and for the pleasure of seeing geishas in ceremonial dress.



Hachinohe city: hidden gem

24 Oct 2019 in Discover Japan

From a spectacular coastal trail to a sprawling morning market, this northern city offers plenty of surprises. Read more

Hideo Saito Photo

The incredible story of Hideo Saito, the orchestra leader who created a stir in japan

15 Jun 2016 in Discover Japan

Hideo Saito is certainly unknown to you, yet he is one of the greatest music teachers that Japan has ever known. Discover his thrilling history ! Read more


5 outdoor experiences in Okunikko

26 Sep 2018 in Discover Japan

Explore the Nikko wilderness with our top tips! Read more


Sakura cherry blossom in Japan

Sakura, the magic of a moment

27 Apr 2016 in Discover Japan

Do you really know the meaning of “Sakura”, a Japanese word which has even become familiar in Europe? Discover its significance and immerse yourself in its magic! Read more


Why arcades are still big in Japan

10 Mar 2017 in Discover Japan

From virtual reality immersion to self-editing photo booths, Japan’s game centres offer something for everyone. Fancy trying your hand? Read more

Umbrella design project

Wagasa, the poetic and practical Japanese umbrella

10 Aug 2016 in Discover Japan

130 million umbrellas are sold each year in Japan, or more than one per person! But these umbrellas were used in a completely different way when they first appeared in the 8th century! Discover how the Japanese are now giving a new life to these iconic objects... Read more

most popular articles