【Ishikawa】7 Recommended Experiences in Noto and Nanao

Ishikawa Experience Gold Foil
©Ishikawa Prefectural Tourism League

Noto region is the only place in Japan where traditional techniques such as the unique salt-making method called Agehama-style and Ama fishing, where women dive to collect shells, are still preserved. Therefore, in the activities, you can see and experience these traditional techniques up close. When visiting Noto or Nanao, please take advantage of these activities to feel the history up close.

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What are Noto and Nanao like?

Ishikawa Noto Sakura
©Ishikawa Prefectural Tourism League

Surrounded by the Sea of Japan, the Noto area is home to beautiful landscapes, Hokuriku gourmet food, and many famous hot springs. Among them, Wakura Onsen is the premier hot spring resort on the Noto Peninsula. Highlights include strolling and eating in the bustling seaside hot spring town, and large-scale fireworks festivals held in spring and summer. Famous hot springs include Wajima Onsen, where you can also enjoy sightseeing such as the "Wajima Morning Market" and "Shiroyone Senmaida", and Shiga no Sato Onsen, known for its beautifying hot spring waters.

Located almost in the center of the Noto Peninsula jutting out into the Sea of Japan is the city of Nanao. The beautiful natural scenery created by the sea and mountains is breathtaking. Nanao Port, which has prospered as a natural good harbor overlooking the Sea of Japan, has been the gateway to the sea and has continued to develop as the center of politics, economy, and culture of Noto since ancient times.

Top 7 recommended activities in Noto and Nanao

The Noto region, with its unique landscape of terraced fields spreading over steep slopes and hedgerows protecting houses from the sea breeze, can be found here. In Noto and Nanao, you can experience traditional techniques that are not found elsewhere, such as the agehama-style salt making method and ama fishing, which have been passed down from the Edo period.

1. Wajima Salt Experience (Noto)

Wajima Salt Experience
©Ishikawa Prefectural Tourism League

Wajima salt is made by applying heat equivalent to body temperature from above the seawater, without boiling it in a pot, and slowly evaporating and concentrating it at a low temperature to crystallize it. Therefore, it melts easily and blends quickly with the ingredients. Furthermore, it has the effect of breaking down the ingredients and promoting fermentation.

The Mitsukohama beach in Wajima has been said to have cold springs since ancient times. The seawater drawn from there is carefully made into Wajima salt. It enhances the taste of the dishes and brings out their umami. Sashimi, steak, tempura, etc., taste fresh when eaten with salt.

At Wajima Salt Production, there are experiences where you can make your own salt and blend it to create your own salt. Why not try it as a memory of your trip?

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2. Suzu Pottery Experience (Noto)

Ishikawa Suzu Pottery Experience
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Suzu ware (Suzu-yaki), which does not use glaze, is characterized by its subdued ash-black finish due to high-temperature firing. Its calm color tone is easy to blend into everyday life and is popular.

Modern Suzu ware, while not much different in process from the past, includes a variety of items such as pots, jars, flower vases, teacups, beer mugs, coffee cups, plates, bowls, and chopstick rests, all made by the hands of potters. Also, the more you use them, the more flavor they acquire.

Suzu ware, with its rustic and powerful unique charm, is the perfect souvenir from Noto. Through the experience, deepen your understanding of traditional crafts and try making a one-of-a-kind pottery piece in the world.

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3. Sake Brewery Tour (Noto)

Noto Sake Brewery Tour
©Ishikawa Prefectural Tourism League

The northern part of the Noto Peninsula, Oku-Noto, is extremely rich in food culture, and the sake brewed there is often unique and attractive. There are also several breweries where you can actually see the brewing process.

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4. Glass Blowing Experience (Noto)

Noto Glass Blowing Experience
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You can create items such as cups and wind chimes by wrapping soft glass, melted at 1300℃, around the tip of a blowing rod and inflating it like a balloon. The process of shaping the hot, syrupy glass while it's still soft, touching it with wet newspaper, gives glass blowing a lively feel.

Many of the glass blowing experiences in Noto are taught one-on-one by staff, so beginners and children can participate with peace of mind.

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5. Kumiko Experience (Nanao)

Nanao Kumiko Experience
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Kumiko is a traditional craft of "Tazuruhama Joinery" that has been handed down for 350 years in Tazuruhama Town. The technique of assembling wood without using nails is characteristic, and it is often used for shoji screens and transoms. The heaviness of the thick coating and the elaborate and gorgeous elegance are the characteristics of Tazuruhama Joinery. In the experience, you can make coasters and photo stands.

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6. Fishing Experience (Nanao)

Nanao Fishing Experience Ishikawa
©Ishikawa Prefectural Tourism League

Nanao Bay, surrounded by Noto Island and the Noto Peninsula, is calm and allows for fishing all year round. The Wakura Onsen Tourism Association offers fishing set rentals, so you can enjoy fishing without having to prepare or bring your own equipment. From April to August, they offer a "Fishing Course" where you can target fish like black sea bream using the simplest fishing method from the embankment, called "bukkomi" fishing. From September to November, they offer an "Octopus Fishing Course" where you fish with a unique Noto lure called "Takochu".

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7. Glass Making Experience (Nanao)

Ishikawa Nanao Glass Making Experience
©Ishikawa Prefectural Tourism League

There are wide range of glass products for purchase and enriching experiences in glassmaking. The glassmaking experience in Nanao, like that in Noto, involves wrapping soft glass melted at 1300 degrees around the tip of a blowing rod and inflating it like a balloon to create cups, wind chimes, and more.

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Enjoy activities in Noto and Nanao, Ishikawa Prefecture!

Ishikawa Noto Nanao Experience
©Ishikawa Prefectural Tourism League

So far, we have introduced recommended activities in Noto and Nanao. Experiences such as making traditional crafts like pottery and glass products, and making local specialties of Noto and Nanao together. All of these are unique local experiences, so please try them out when you visit Noto and Nanao.

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※The prices mentioned in this article are based on the amounts listed on the reservation site as of March 2024.
※This is the information at the time of publication. Please note that it may be sold out.


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