Tsurugi has existed for thousands of years, and as such, the culture of the town is rich and beautiful. The town hosts exciting places such as the ancient Shirayama Hime Shrine, several sake breweries, traditional stores selling sweets such as ice cream, dango, and manju, and centuries-old buildings which line the streets. There are also cultural experiences to be had, such as being blessed by a priest in a sacred pool (misogi), trying your hand at various local crafts, and experiencing the exciting Autumn Hourai Festival up close and personal. And if that’s not enough, travelling just outside of Tsurugi opens up a whole world of natural beauty – from waterfalls to ancient forests – in the Hakusan Tedorigawa Geopark.
But travelling around Tsurugi can be difficult without a means of transport, and being such a small town, public transport is limited. The Hakusan City Office has decided to help by providing a bike rental system, offering everything from simple push-bikes to electrically-assisted mountain bikes.
In this article I will explain how to rent a bike from Tsurugi. However, you can also rent a bike from Kanazawa and carry it onto the Hokuriku Rail Road Train from Nomachi Station in Kanazawa*.
*Bikes can only be boarded at Nomachi and Tsurugi Stations. Bikes are not allowed on during winter from December 1 to March 13.
If you're travelling to Tsurugi by train, you will arrive at Tsurugi Station. As you exit the station keep walking straight, and in front of you across the road will be the Tsurugi Branch of the Hakusan City Office - a big brick building with a covered entrance. Go inside and turn left to the tourist information desk.
Here you can ask for a bike by saying ‘jitensha o karitai’ (or just point to the bikes in front of the desk). Then you can choose what kind of bike you want. If you’re going to be travelling far, an electrically-assisted bike is recommended, but if you’re just travelling around town and don’t mind a bit of exercise, then a standard bike is a cheap option. After choosing which bike, pay the fee, write down your contact details, and you’re good to go! Just be sure to bring the bikes back by 5 pm. Helmets are available if needed.
Tsurugi is really a fantastic town with lots to offer. If you have time though, I highly recommend riding along the Canyon Road cycling path. This is a cycling path that traverses where the Hokuriku Rail Road used to run decades ago, and follows the valley up into the mountains. You can see the many natural wonders and beautiful scenery surrounding the Tedori River and Tedori Gorge, such as several old bridges, terraced rice paddies, the Torigoe Castle Ruins, and the Watagataki Waterfall. If you can manage to climb all the way to the Sena Roadside Station you can be rewarded with several kinds of ice cream including soba, tofu, and horse chestnut flavours.
Tsurugi Bike Rental Summary
Bikes can be rented from the Tsurugi Branch of the Hakusan City Hall, just in front of Tsurugi Station.
Go up to the desk to the left as you enter, and ask to rent a bike by saying ‘jitensha o karitai’. Then choose which kind of bike you want, fill in your contact details, and pay the fee.
After riding, be sure to bring the bike back by 5 pm.
Standard bikes: ¥300 per day
Electrically-assisted bikes: ¥700 to ¥1000 per day, depending on size.
9 am until 4 pm (Bikes must be returned by 5 pm).