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Ninja Temple, Kanazawa

#3 of 96 in Historic Sites in Kanazawa
Religious Site · Tourist Spot
Explore the eccentric twists and turns of Ninja Temple, a Buddhist temple that served as a military stronghold. Seemingly an inconspicuous two-story building, the temple's interior reveals a complicated design filled with traps, hidden chambers, and escape tunnels, built to enable Lord Maeda and his samurais to protect themselves from an attack by the central government. Explore the elaborate network of chambers, connected by a staggering 29 staircases and laid out over four levels, featuring numerous intricacies designed to trap, hinder, or confuse the enemy. While the guided tour is available in Japanese only, you'll receive a book with thorough explanations of all the sights as you enter. Make Ninja Temple a centerpiece of your Kanazawa vacation itinerary, and find what else is worth visiting using our Kanazawa day trip planning site.
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Ninja Temple reviews

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1,267 reviews
  • Don’t go here if you’re sensitive to discrimination. My Japanese husband booked on the phone and didn’t say I was a “foreigner” as I can speak Japanese. When we arrived, I was grilled at the entrance....  more »
  • You need a reservation to go inside, and it is worth planning ahead. You will be told that the tour is given only in Japanese. Have no fear! If you can read English then you will be fine. They offer.....  more »
  • I read through reviews before coming so: Our hotel staff helped us secure reservations first off. And it definitely seemed necessary, as there were lots of people. I never encountered any rude staff. Our guide was very friendly and tried to use some English here and there although it wasn't necessary for our group. The booklet they give is pretty much on for translation. Others mention the guides have some humor/are fun, and you do miss out on this if you don't know any Japanese at all but it isn't necessary and your understanding and enjoyment of the tour won't be any less overall. That said, this place is a well-oiled machine churning out the tourist groups. But as you make your way through the temple, it makes sense. The temple is quite small and it almost seems timed the way the groups will pass by each other perfectly as to not create a feeling of congestion or overcrowdedness. This is some high quality crowd control at its finest. As for the temple itself, it's really neat. There's nothing else quite like it. I think it's worth the cost to see at least once.
  • Great value - 1000 yen for a 45 min fully guided tour. The tour is in Japanese but they have booklets in English for anyone that doesn't speak it. Very friendly staff, very cool spot!

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