Tourists love to visit Japan during the spring. The cherry blossoms during the spring months (March to May) are the best time to visit Japan. This is an island country. It experiences a range of weather patterns. When arranging a trip, the weather must be taken into consideration for other months too. For hikers and other outdoor enthusiasts, the summer months provide the best circumstances. The Japanese Alps and northern national parks are excellent sites. For a completely different experience, plan your trip around the northern part during the winter.
- When is the Best Time to Go to Japan?
- New Year Celebration in January
- Winter Festivals in February
- March: Cherry Blossom and More
- Blissful Weather of April
- Explore the Countryside in May
- June Marks the Beginning of Rain
- Summer Days of July
- Enjoy the Summer Festivals During August
- September is a Transitional Period
- October: Autumn Holidays
- November has Unique Year End Celebrations
- Spend Your Winter Vacation in December Snow
- Climate Guide for Japan: Choose the Best Months to Visit Japan
When is the Best Time to Go to Japan?
The two greatest seasons to visit Japan are spring and fall. Japan is at its most colorful at this time, with delicate cherry blossoms or vivid red hues. Families love these months for all the cultural celebrations. However, go through the descriptions to participate in a variety of activities based on your interests.
New Year Celebration in January
Even though January in Japan may be the coldest, it’s a fantastic time to travel there. There are many exciting events, like the New Year’s celebrations. It is also one of the least expensive months to travel to the country. You will love the winter here.
Shrine Hoping for New Year
- There is a custom of going to temples and shrines at the start of the new year.
- Visiting shrines during Oshogatsu is known as Hatsumode.
- It can be interesting for the joyful ambiance and food vendors.
- Itsukushima Shrine in Miyajima has a very vibrant New Year celebration.
- Traditional music and dance performances are presented between January 1 and 3.
- Tourists can go on December 31 to witness the Chinka-sai Fire Festival.
- After that watch the sunrise from the top of Mt. Misen.
- This will be a unique experience for travelers for the New Year celebration.
Engaging in winter sports
- With lots of possibilities for winter sports, this month is a terrific ski season.
- Consider booking a room at a well-known resort in Niigata Nagano, or Hokkaido.
- Hokkaido has advantages from a long season and top-notch snow.
- There are many different types of skiing available for travelers, making winter the best time for you to travel to Japan.
- Those who live in Tokyo have several great options.
- They can go to the resorts more easily situated in the Myoko.
- Even Northern Japan Alps snow-clad ranges are easy to access.
Winter Festivals in February
In this country, February falls in the middle of winter. This makes it one of the coldest months with huge regional temperature variations. The southern Okinawa Islands experience mild weather.
While in the western part of Hokkaido, it snows heavily. The rest of the country is generally cold. With so few people in Japan at this time of year, it is a fantastic opportunity to travel there.
Sapporo Snow Festival
- Every year in early February, Sapporo City hosts the Sapporo Snow Festival.
- It draws over 1.9 million tourists each year.
- Impressive pieces of art created with snow and ice are on display throughout the city.
- Numerous winter festivals are hosted across the country.
- Among the most distinctive aspects of Japanese winters is Kamakura.
- Kamakura literally means “snow domes.”
- The largest Kamakura event is held at Yokote.
- There are numerous little Kamakura’s present at the festival.
- These domes are illuminated for a breathtaking night winter landscape.
Nagasaki Lantern Festival
- The largest Chinese New Year festival in the country takes place in Nagasaki City.
- For fifteen days, Nagasaki City hosts the lantern festival.
- It involves more than 15,000 lanterns, which are decorated with vibrant colors.
- Experience authentic Chinese flavors along with traditional Chinese performances.
March: Cherry Blossom and More
Japan is beautiful when spring arrives. The first blossoms appear as the festival season approaches. This island country is more picturesque during this month. Vibrant markets start to operate. Hence, it is among the best times of year to visit Japan. In some areas, you might even like the wintertime, like Mount Fuji.
Picnic Under Cherry Blossom
- There are several well-known cherry tree species in Japan.
- All through the country, both early and later blossoming sakura can be found.
- Perhaps the best season to visit Japan is during this period.
- The likelihood of seeing sakura in all its magnificence is influenced by the weather.
- Sakura gazing season typically begins on the Japanese island of Honshu in March.
- You can plan a romantic picnic when in Tokyo in late March.
Ume (Plum Blossom)
- This custom is frequently overshadowed by sakura gazing.
- Ume is an after-winter flower blooming.
- Plum blooms can be found in numerous locations around the country
- A yearly plum festival takes place at the Yushima Tenjin Shrine in Tokyo.
- The festival is organized from late February to early March.
- The national sport of Japan is sumo.
- It will be a great cultural experience to attend the Spring Grand Sumo Tournament.
- The Edition Arena Osaka in Osaka is the location of this major competition.
Blissful Weather of April
April is when spring truly starts to bloom. You may get by with light coats during this laid-back period. Japan is at its most colorful during this time, with beautiful blossoms. The vivid red leaves provide a contrast to the surroundings.
- To see blossoms at night, visit Hirosaki Park in Aomori or Takada Castle Site Park in Niigata.
- Takada Park is known for its huge castle grounds and stunning flower corridor.
- Plan to go to Takada in early to mid of April.
- Similarly, in the second half, you may visit Hirosaki.
- From April until June, take part in Disney’s Easter at the Tokyo Disney Resort.
- Easter-themed decorations will be used throughout the park.
- Special parades and egg-hunting contests are major highlights.
- Limited-edition goods at stores are a treat for tourists.
- Cherry blossoms aren’t the only thing that makes spring beautiful.
- In addition to cherry blossoms, there are numerous other wonderful blooms.
- Popular blooming includes nemophila in Hitachi Seaside Park and wisteria in Ashikaga.
- The Pink Moss may be seen close to Mount Fuji.
Swim in Less Crowded Beach
- In the second half of the month, you can go swimming.
- During this month, Okinawa is ready for visitors.
- Their beaches open formally in March.
- Swimming is permitted there beginning in April.
- Additionally, the weather is comfortable and it’s a wonderful time to avoid crowds.
Explore the Countryside in May
May typically has dry, pleasantly warm weather. At this point in the month, cherry blossoms have reached the northern regions. The rainy season in Okinawa begins in May. Golden Week is the first week in May. This is the busiest time for you to visit Japan.
- One of the major festivals in Tokyo is the Asakusa Sanja Festival.
- Between Sensoji Temple and Asakusa Shrine, colorful floats and shrines are paraded.
- Performers are dressed in the Edo period traditional costumes.
- The Hiroshima Flower Festival is held farther south of Tokyo.
- At this time, Peace Boulevard has entertainment, musical performances, and a display of flowers.
- Hundreds of performers throng Fukuoka’s streets at the start of May.
- The Hakata Dontaku Port Festival is celebrated over two days.
- The festival features performances and dance processions.
Peace of Countryside
- When the weather is warm, the scenery is gorgeous.
- The countryside’s paddy fields sparkle in the early morning sun.
- At this time of year, a large number of tourists visit Niigata and Fukushima.
- Newly planted rice terraces may be your favorite view.
- To escape the bustle of the city, consider staying somewhere rural.
June Marks the Beginning of Rain
The Japanese term for June is Mizuki (the month of water). In comparison to other months, this one has higher rainfall. The rainy season starts later and will last longer in the northern part than it does in the south.
Color Festivals of Hokkaido
- Hokkaido is the area least hit by the month of water.
- Hence, it can be the ideal destination for a vacation.
- The area is renowned for its rocky and frequently breathtaking terrain.
- The Yosakoi Soran Festival is one of the many things to do.
- After that, you can take part in the Hokkaido Shrine Festival.
- Throughout this color festival, Odori Park will host lovely dancing processions.
Rishiri-Rebun-Sarobetsu National Park
- The northernmost national park in the island country is gifted with wild mountains.
- Here, visitors can view stunning alpine blooms.
- Both Rebun Island and Rishiri Island offer breathtaking coastal views.
- It is perfect for hiking and wildlife photography.
- Families can take Heart Land Ferry to see Rishiri and Rebun islands up close.
Otaue Rice Planting Festival
- The most renowned rice festival in the nation is the Otaue Rice Planting Festival.
- According to legend, it has been observed each June since 211 AD.
- The event is held in Kansai at the Sumiyoshi Taisha Shrine.
- You will be seeing spectacular parades, musicians, dancing, and traditional customs.
- The Sumiyoshi Dance and a parade of Samurai soldiers are two other highlights of the festival.
Summer Days of July
In Japan, each season has its own distinct charm. Hence, summer is no different. The wet season is either over or coming to an end in July. Summer officially begins as the humidity continues to climb. Baseball, beach vacations, and mountainous hikes are all common activities.
Explore the Peninsula of Izu
- There are several stunning beaches on the Japanese peninsula of Izu.
- One of the most well-liked beaches is Shimoda Beach.
- It is perfect to relax here during the summer.
- Paragliding, snorkeling, and scuba diving are popular water sports.
- Families can enjoy precious time together on these beaches while sunbathing.
- For a successful vacation, be sure to taste the various sea foods while you’re there.
A Trip to Highlands
- Karuizawa is located in the picturesque Nagano Prefecture.
- This highland continues to be a significant summer vacation spot for visitors.
- This area is popular for its hiking and walking routes near Mount Asama.
- Beautiful waterfalls can be found nearby.
- Hence, it is a relaxing getaway and a cheap vacation in Japan.
Gion Matsuri in Kyoto: Best time to visit Japan in 2023
- This event is a month-long festival in the country.
- It is celebrated elaborately in Kyoto.
- The parade of floats is the focus of Matsuri.
- Taking part in this vibrant parade in 2023 should be a top priority for travelers.
Fireworks in Tokyo
- The Sumida River Fireworks Festival in Tokyo is perhaps the oldest.
- It is the most illustrious fireworks display in the country.
- It has been around since the 1700s.
- Every year, the celebration is usually held on the last Saturday in July.
- The renowned Sensoji Temple is also not far from the event.
Enjoy the Summer Festivals During August
August marks the height of summer in Japan when temperatures are high all around the country. Festivals, fireworks displays, flower viewing, and other activities abound this month.
There are many enjoyable summertime activities available nationwide. Beaches are among the top-visited destinations over weekends in Japan.
Festivals for Summer Days
- The Nebuta Festival is known as the king of Japanese summer festivals.
- This is the most vibrant and exciting annual custom celebrated in Aomori Province.
- The event attracts up to 3 million guests each year for 6 days.
- The largest traditional dance event hosted in Tokushima Province is called the Awa Odori Festival.
- Over a million people watch various dance troupes perform folk dances during the festival.
Learn About the Past at Hiroshima
- Hiroshima is an interesting destination all year long.
- However, August is particularly significant.
- It marks the anniversary of the town being hit by the atom bomb on August 6, 1945.
- Learn about this historic occasion by going to the Hiroshima Memorial Peace Park.
- UNESCO designated the Peace Park as a World Heritage Site.
- Japan is renowned around the world as a food paradise.
- Therefore, the summer is a fantastic time to taste the nation’s amazing food.
- You may explore both traditional dishes and street food.
- During the summer, food stands sell authentic yakitori and takoyaki.
- Kakigori, Somen, and Ayu are further popular food items.
September is a Transitional Period
Without a doubt, one of the best times to visit Japan is in September. It combines the summer and autumn into a single month. Therefore, there are tons of things to see and experience.
Although early September is considered summer, autumn officially begins towards the end of the month. You will get the opportunity to view stunning scenery and fall colors.
Pray for Some Good Luck on Maneki-Neko Day
- Maneki-Neko Day falls on September 29.
- The term “invite or greet” is paired with the “cat” to form the phrase “Maneki-Neko.”
- It’s called the “beckoning cat” and is viewed as a lucky symbol.
- There are undoubtedly thousands of these adorable sculptures around Japan.
- You may take part in this wonderful celebration by going to Gotokuji Temple in Tokyo.
- This gorgeous three-story wooden pagoda provides a stunning setting.
Last Month of Hiking
- The final week leg of the hiking period of the magnificent Mt. Fuji is the first week in September.
- This could be the ideal opportunity to visit this magnificent peak.
- The Yoshida Trail’s official season finishes in September.
Appreciate the Beauty of the Moon During Tsukimi
- Tsukimi has been observed annually during this month.
- It dates back to the 710-794 AD Nara era.
- Tsukimi is basically “gazing at the moon.”
- It was originally observed by listening to music and poems.
- Himeji Castle, Ise Grand Shrine, and Tokyo Tower are the best locations for the celebration.
October: Autumn Holidays
October is a wonderful month to visit the Land of the Rising Sun to celebrate the arrival of early fall. Hiking and autumn leaf viewing are two excellent ways to enjoy natural beauty. Japan has to be a sight for sore eyes during autumn.
- This month is by far the finest month for outdoor activities due to the temperate weather.
- This is the best month to view autumnal colors on mountains.
- You may take a one-hour rewarding hike from Kappabashi.
- You will get to see a breathtaking view of Myojin Pond at Hotaka Shrine.
- Meiji no Mori Takao Quasi-National Park contains Mt. Takao.
- Over 2.5 million people go to the popular hiking destination on the 599 m-high peaks.
- Kochia Carnival is one of the most well-liked seasonal celebrations in the autumn.
- It takes place on Kochia Hill.
- The hill is located in Hitachi Seaside Park within Ibaraki Province.
- The large park is covered with fluffy and beautiful Kochia flowers that change colors.
- The entry fee can be around 450 yen.
- It is a customary celebration that takes place in Takayama City.
- The festival is organized twice a year, in the months of April and October.
- The celebration takes place within the bounds of Hachiman Shrine in the old town of Takayama City.
- It features traditional floats, decorations, processions, and lanterns at night.
Hokkaido Food Festival
- A fresh harvest is celebrated during the festival.
- Many seasonal foods and ingredients are there for the visitors.
- Hence, people frequently use the expression “Autumn’s Appetite.”
- This festival is one of many food-related events that take place during this season.
- The four-day outdoor food festival is held in Tokyo’s Yoyogi Park.
November has Unique Year End Celebrations
November is a pleasant month to travel because of the cool air, clear skies, and vibrant autumn mood. The weather does become chilly over time, especially in the mornings and evenings. So, a hot spring excursion is a simple cure for all those cold spells. There’s a lot to do in Japan during this month, and it’s a great time to visit.
- This city has temples, shrines, former palaces, and scenic riverside locations to enjoy.
- Walk through the Philosopher’s Trailer with your friends.
- The route starts at Nanzenji Temple.
- The path follows the canal line after the temple.
- The beautiful pathway crosses Honen-in, Otoya Shrine, and Eikan Do Zenrin-ji.
- It then winds around Ginkakuji by the Silver Pavilion.
- After dark, walk through Gion and Pontocho.
Winter Illuminations: The Best Time to Visit Japan in 2022
- The Shirakawago Autumn Leaves Illumination takes place every year in this magical village.
- The illumination at Ashikaga Flower Park is a must-visit.
- The Kingdom of Light is a theme park north of Nagasaki.
- It is based on a recreation of a Dutch village.
- It displays over 13 million lights dazzling its way through the night.
- The beauty of Japan’s autumn leaves gives competition to the cherry blossoms.
- This season has become quite popular among foreign visitors.
- Autumn leaf viewing has its own phrase, such as Koyo (red leaves).
- Nikko, Arashiyama, Nara, and Mt.Nasu Dake are some great locations.
Spend Your Winter Vacation in December Snow
Seasonal highlights at the end of the calendar year include widespread winter illuminations. It marks the start of the ski season and, in many places, the first snowfall. The temperature ranges from autumnal cool to true winter cold.
The Oshogatsu holiday season in Japan starts at the end of this month. Mountain panoramas stand out against azure backgrounds under crisp, clear winter skies, making everything seem that much more special at the end of the year.
Skiing Season is On
- The majority of popular ski resorts are open by mid-to-late December.
- The major resorts in Hokkaido may open as early as the end of November.
- Skating is one of the most wintry and celebratory activities this season for travelers.
- Tokyo has many centrally located outdoor ice skating rinks.
- Onsen is a must-do activity in Japan for all tourists.
- The best time to visit is during the winter.
- A hot onsen bath feels even better, and it’s even better when the bath is outside.
- There are many Onsen spots in the northern regions.
- Here, you can enjoy watching snow while bathing.
Attend the Chichibu Night Festival
- It is a traditional Japanese festival.
- It begins on December 1st and continues for 5 days at the Chichibu Shrine.
- On December 3rd, there is a parade with massive floating boats and fireworks.
Climate Guide for Japan: Choose the Best Months to Visit Japan
This island nation enjoys all four seasons. Nevertheless, spring is a popular time for tourists to visit the nation. However, there are unusual community events and unique experiences every month.
All in All,
Speaking of when is the best time/month to visit Japan, your preferred season will have a big impact on your decision. However, your hobbies and the trip’s overall goal will be the primary factors. As a result, you may make holiday plans while considering your interests, finances, and the weather.
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