Japan is a vision destination for many. Introducing a stark and intriguing contrast of culture, along with an almost unjust abundance of natural beauty, Japan is truly a captivating country. Add to that the presence of (perhaps) the most advanced tourist support infrastructure in the world, you get an ideal vacation spot.
Talking about vacation spots, there always seems to be an “ideal” time to visit them, which usually coincides with the peak tourist season. Meaning, large crowds and expensive everything. For those reading this article, in the case of Japan, June is far from being the peak season. However, the reason is that the rainy season in Japan begins around this time.
So can you still visit Japan in June? Let’s discover a little bit more about the Japanese weather during the month of June to answer this question.
Japan Weather In June
June marks the beginning of monsoon showers in Japan. The season is mostly associated with regular showers and gloomy days, making it an unpopular season for tourists. With that said, there are certain misconceptions associated with the Japanese rainy season that deter many travelers from exploring the country’s charm during this off-season month.
Firstly, contrary to popular belief, the rainy season in Japan does not bring about continuous showers. While they are highly likely on most days, there are still a few sunny days that are perfect for exploration. However, even on these days, the humidity levels are on the higher side of the spectrum.
Similarly, another lesser known fact about the Japanese monsoon is that it is not equally severe in all cities. Sure, major tourist cities like Tokyo and Kyoto do receive a considerable amount of rainfall, but there are lesser-known cities like Hokkaido and Okinawa.
Finally, as everyone may concur, no trip to Japan is complete without spending at least a couple of days in Tokyo and Kyoto. If you plan on visiting these cities in June, you won’t be disappointed as both these cities have some truly remarkable indoor experiences to keep you intrigued while you wait for the sun to shine.
Why You Should Visit Japan In June
The primary reason for visiting any place during the off-season is the affordable prices of flights and accommodation options. Furthermore, if you are planning to follow our recommendation to visit Hokkaido, June is the perfect time to do so.
During this month, Hokkaido is enjoying its finest weather, while the masses of local tourists are still waiting for their children’s summer vacations to begin, making June the best time to visit Hokkaido.
6 Best Festivals To Attend In Japan In June
There are several local festivals to look forward to in Japan, during the month of June. Some of these are:
1. Agata Festival
The Agata Celebration occurs in Kyoto on the night of June 5th. The festival endures throughout the night and is believed to assist the locals in warding off malevolence. It includes a magnificent procession, along with a ritual called bonten mawashi. In this ritual, participants in the parade wave a bonten (a rectangular piece of wood with attached papers) in the darkness. It is believed that whoever catches a piece of paper is bestowed with good fortune and a potent talisman that repels evil.
City: Kyoto Dates: June 5
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2. Rice Planting Festival
Rice is the primary food of Japan and the rainy season brings the necessary heavy rainfalls for rice cultivation. Hence, this period is celebrated in Osaka with the Rice Planting Festival. The 1700-year-old festival is commemorated when 12 women plant rice seedlings in the paddy field of the Sumiyoshi Shrine amidst traditional music and rice planting songs.
City: Osaka Dates: 14 June
3. Enshu Hamakita Hiryu Matsuri
The festival that celebrates fire, water, and sound, the Enshu Hamakita Hiryu Matsuri festival honors the deity of the Tenyu River in Hamamatsu City. The festival is a true spectacle with a fire festival featuring a flying dragon’s head, kite flying (known locally as Takoage), and various performances of Japanese Drums, commonly referred to as Taiko.
City: Hamamatsu City Dates: First Weekend Of June
4. Sapporo Festival Of Hokkaido Shrine
A four day celebration held in the sunny urban center of Hokkaido, this event involves a grand procession near the Hokkaido Shrine. The procession of four portable chairs and eight ornamented flags begins at Toyohira-koen Station and travels to Odori Park.
Urban center: HokkaidoDates: 14-16 June
5. Ittoman Dragon Boat Racing
The term “dragon boat racing” translates to “hare,” a festive sport in Japan. While Okinawa hosts several “hare” throughout the year, Itoman Hare is the most revered event. A celebration that holds great significance among fishermen in Okinawa, the Ittoman Hare is celebrated to pray for safe sailing and fruitful catches.
Urban center: OkinawaDates: Mid-June
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6. Aizen Celebration
A festival dedicated to honoring Aizen Myo-oh, a magnificent Buddhist guardian deity, Aizen Festival is one of the three major summer festivals celebrated in Osaka. While the festival itself is a splendid event, it also carries a fascinating historical significance. Throughout Japan’s history, performers and prostitutes alike have worshiped Aizen Myo-oh for luck and popularity. The Geisha parade, known as Houkago, is exceptionally popular, drawing thousands of locals who come to witness the spectacle.
City: OsakaDates: 30 June to 2 July
7. Hydrangea Festival
The Hydrangea flower, a charming and exotic blossom in Japan, marks the onset of the rainy season. Rain holds special meaning in various aspects of Japanese life, and the blooming of these lovely Hydrangea flowers is widely celebrated across the country. The most renowned Hydrangea Festival, known as the Bunkyo Hydrangea Festival, is held in Bunkyo.
Top 5 Places To Explore In Japan In June
Let’s start by examining a compilation of destinations you can visit in Japan during June:
Okinawa is a renowned vacation spot among the Japanese, and for good reason. Its vast beaches offer breathtaking views of the azure ocean. June is an ideal time to visit Okinawa as the rainy season has usually abated by then, and sunny days prevail.
Furthermore, since July is the peak tourist season for Okinawa, travelers can avoid the crowds and enjoy more affordable hotel and flight prices by planning a visit to Okinawa in June.
As previously mentioned, Hokkaido is the single uncommon Japanese city that stays arid throughout the entire year. Home to some of the largest summer festivals in the nation, Hokkaido is another popular vacation spot among the Japanese. Comparable to Okinawa, the peak tourist season for Hokkaido commences in July, so making a visit before that can prove to be highly advantageous.
3. Rishiri And Rebun Islands
Rishiri and Rebun Islands are a pair of diminutive islands off the coastline of Okinawa. The islands are home to a compilation of remarkable hikes, captivating views, and some scarce alpine flowers that only initiate blooming in June.
4. Sunshine Aquarium, Tokyo
Just because you are exploring the other (sunnier) prefectures of Japan doesn’t imply that you can’t have enjoyment during your time in Tokyo. Among the numerous activities and sights to behold in the marvelous city, Sunshine Aquarium is an absolute must-visit. While the aquarium shelters some extraordinary aquatic species, the unique aspect about it is its location on the tenth floor of a skyscraper in Tokyo.
Nagano, a petite town near Tokyo, is home to some fantastic hikes and mountain trails that experience relatively less precipitation than nearby cities. For adventure enthusiasts, Nagano can prove to be the perfect retreat from the heavy Tokyo rainfall.
3 Top Things To Do In Japan In June
Planning to explore Japan in June? Let’s discover the finest activities to enjoy during this period.
1. Explore The Digital Arts Museum
The mesmerizing experience of the Digital Arts Museum cannot be expressed in words. As they say, you must witness it to believe it. Regardless of the month you have selected for your Japan visit, make sure to include the Digital Arts Museum in your itinerary.
Location: TokyoOpening Hours: Mon to Thurs 11:00–19:00, Fri & Holiday Eve 11:00–21:00, Sat 10:00–21:00, Sun & Holiday 10:00–19:00
Admission Fee: Approximately Rs 2100 for adults and Rs 650 for children
2. Explore A Japanese Museum
Museums are a popular way to spend leisurely hours in Japan. Don’t forget, museums also offer a great escape from the rain. Tokyo alone boasts around 100 museums, keeping you engaged for days.
The Samurai Museum, Fire Museum, and the Mori Art Museum are some of the most notable museums in Tokyo.
Location: Throughout TokyoOpening Hours: VariesAdmission Fee: Varies
3. Experience Authentic Japanese Karaoke
Another popular activity among the locals, the unique karaoke bars in Japan are truly unlike any karaoke bar you’ve been to. Top karaoke bars in Tokyo include the Robot Restaurant, Maid Cafe, and Pachinko.
Location: Throughout JapanOpening Hours: VariesAdmission Fee: Free
Further Reading: 35 Best Places To Visit In Japan That Make It Look Right Out Of A Storybook
As you can see, Japan offers an abundance of activities and sights to explore in June. The country is brimming with natural, man-made, and cultural wonders that will delight any visitor. With favorable flight and hotel prices, June is perhaps the best month to experience Japan, especially if you’re traveling on a tight budget.
Need assistance with planning your trip to Japan in June? We have answered the most frequently asked questions to help you get started:
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Frequently Asked Questions About Japan In June
When is the peak tourist season in Japan?
The peak season in Japan extends throughout the year. From the cherry blossom months to the Autumn foliage season, Japan offers a distinct charm in each season. However, the country experiences a surge in tourist numbers during the winter months of December and January.
How can I get around within Japan?
Japan’s public transport system is one of the most advanced in the world and extremely user-friendly. Opting for trains and buses is much more cost-effective than hiring private taxis.
Are there any specific Japanese customs I should be aware of?
Japanese society is known for its unique customs, and it is important to be aware of and respect them. Customs such as bowing or shaking hands, table manners, and appropriate attire are highly valued by the Japanese people, so it is worth familiarizing yourself with them before visiting their country.
How much does a visit to the Sunshine Aquarium cost?
The entry fee for the Sunshine Aquarium is approximately Rs. 1300 for adults and Rs. 650 for minors. Please note that these prices are approximate and may vary depending on currency conversion rates.
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