Ishikawa Gate (Ishikawamon), visible from the northwest corner of Kenrokuen and reached via bridge over a busy thoroughfare, served as the south entrance to the castle and is the castle's only remaining original structure. Observing how big and grand the gate is, you can appreciate the magnitude of the original Maeda castle. Remarkably, its roof tiles are actually lead, in case emergency dictated they be melted down for musket balls. The area just beyond the gate is the newly created Kanazawa Castle Park, which contains a botanical garden with a contemporary layout and reconstructed fortifications (the Hishi Yagura and Hashizume-mon Tsuzuki Yagura watchtowers, and, linking them, the Gojikken Nagaya storehouse) built in 2001 using traditional Japanese construction techniques; an English-language pamphlet and audio buttons make this a fascinating must for architecture buffs, but you can skip these empty buildings if time is of the essence.