Snow precipitation in Japan can absolutely mean heaps of snow, but don’t allow the snow postpone your plans. In fact, wintertime in Japan provides you with a fantastic opportunity to venture out and experience the customs, cuisine, and even the ski-slopes of the country. If you’re wondering what you can do during the period of snowfall in Japan, then here is a list of some enjoyable activities in which you can partake when it snows.
Activities To Engage In During Snowfall Season In Japan
So, scroll down and discover how you can spend your time during the snowfall season in Japan to optimize your vacation in this captivating region of the world.
1. Engage in skiing or snowboarding down the slopes in Japan
Numerous tourists visit Japan specifically to partake in the winter activities available here. In December until March, snowfall frequently occurs in Japan, rendering it the ideal time to go skiing and snowboarding. And the prime location to engage in these activities is in Hokkaido, a region that is abundant with exceptional ski resorts. The snow-covered slopes are literally brimming with fresh snow, which will undoubtedly entice you to ski or snowboard down these slopes. Hakuba, Niseko, Yuzawa, or Nozawa Onsen are renowned as some of the top places to engage in skiing and snowboarding in Japan.
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2. Immerse yourself in an open-air Onsen
Taking a bath in an onsen is far more enjoyable when it takes place outdoors. Some destinations you can explore include the Nyuto Onsen district, Ginzan Onsen in Yamagata, and the most famous one, the Noboribetsu Onsen in Hokkaido. At Noboribetsu Onsen, you can indulge in various hot springs, which boast numerous therapeutic properties. Sulfur, Salt, Aluminum, Mirabilite, and Alkaline springs are just a few of the onsens (hot springs) available in Noboribetsu Onsen. If this isn’t thrilling enough, you can also spend time unwinding in a traditional Japanese Inn, also known as a Ryokan.
3. Engage in ice skating in Tokyo
There are numerous open-air skating rinks in Japan that cater to skaters of all levels, ranging from novices to experts. White Sacas stands as one of the most expansive rooftop ice skating rinks in Tokyo. Picture yourself skating on a rooftop embellished with sparkling lights, relishing the panoramic views. This location makes for an ideal spot for a romantic rendezvous. The ice skating season typically commences on January 5th and stretches until February 25th.
4. Experience snowshoe trekking
If you have never attempted snowshoe trekking, seize the opportunity during the snowfall season in Japan. Snowshoe trekking is an activity that enables easy traversal through snow with the aid of specialized footwear, giving you the sensation of walking on soft and pristine snow. While trekking, you will come across numerous snow-covered mountains, mountain ranges, and enchanting vistas that are not part of your daily sightings.
One of the most renowned destinations for snowshoeing is the Kurumayama Kogen Ski Resort, where you can trek to the pinnacle of Mount Kirigamine, an illustrious mountain in Japan. Thus, make sure to partake in this activity when you visit Japan during snowy conditions.
5. Stroll on drifting ice
Why not try a Drift Ice Walk during snowfall in Japan?
Drift Ice Walks are a popular activity in Japan, especially in Shiretoko, Hokkaido. This activity is truly unique and we guarantee that there is nothing as thrilling as walking on drift ice. During the winter season, the Hokkaido Sabin Okhotsk becomes filled with drifting ice floes.
The helpful guides will ensure that you have the best experience possible by taking you to incredible spots where you can witness spotted seals swimming around. A dry suit with attached boots will keep you warm and comfortable during your adventure. The drift ice season begins in February and lasts until March.
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6. Experience the Sapporo Snow Festival
The Sapporo Snow Festival is hosted in Japan every year, starting from the 5th of February until the 11th of February. This snow festival occurs in three primary locations: Odori Park, Susukino, and Tsudome. Odori Park serves as the festival’s main venue, featuring an impressive collection of snow and ice sculptures. Some of these ice sculptures stand at heights ranging from 15 meters to 25 meters. Additionally, there are abundant options for warm beverages and food available at this site. One of the highlights of the festival is the illumination of the sculptures, which gives them a lifelike appearance.
The second location, Tsudome, offers various snow activities including snow slides, snow rafting, and other recreational options suitable for all. Susukino, on the other hand, may be the smallest of the three sites, but it houses the renowned Ice Sculpture Contest. Therefore, visitors can witness numerous ice sculptors in action here. With its incredible offerings, this snow festival manages to attract a staggering 2 million attendees every year.
7. Marvel at the frozen waterfalls of Nikko
Nikko presents itself as an ideal destination for a rejuvenating two-day getaway during Japan’s snowy season. The frigid climate in Nikko’s mountains causes the waterfalls to freeze. However, before reaching and beholding the frozen waterfalls, visitors must embark on a short hike up the valley. Along the way, you will come across several dams and erosion projects that were constructed to prevent flooding from the river during the monsoon season.
Once you ascend the valley, you will undoubtedly be astounded by the size of the ice stalactites and colossal ice formations that make up the frozen waterfall. Late December to early March is the best time for hiking, as the waterfall freezes due to the plummeting temperatures.
8. Witness the blossoming of cherry trees in Kawazu city
Cherry Blossoms are among the most well-known flowers of Japan, which are, until this day, visited by tourists from around the world. And the greatest part is that you don’t have to wait until spring you can see them bloom in early February in Kawazu City, Shizuoka Prefecture. This city is actually recognized for early blooming Cherry Blossoms, which endure for about only a month. So, make sure you witness them bloom, during your visit to Japan.
9. Witness snow monkeys at the Jigokudani Monkey Park
Have you ever been to a monkey park? Well, you can when you are in Jigokudani Monkey Park located in Nagano Prefecture in Japan. This is one of the most renowned and distinctive places, that you can visit during your time in Japan. Even though you can see monkeys all-year-round, but tourists prefer visiting this location during the winter, because the entire park is covered in snow, which is definitely a spectacle to witness during snowfall in Japan.
10. Experience the seasonal dishes
There are a few renowned seasonal dishes which are a must try for everyone who is planning a visit during the winter. Hotpot dish, rice cakes (mochi) and crab, are some of the most traditional and delectable dishes that you can savor in Japan. The best place to try crab all over Japan is in Hokkaido, but, there are a few astounding places in Tokyo too. There are other dishes that you can indulge in such as; Nabe, Yudofu, Yakiimo, Sukiyaki, Okayu, Oden and Nikujaga. And, while you’re at it, don’t forget to try out the hot sake, which is very ideal during winter. There are also a couple of seasonal fruits which you can try during winter in Japan, the most famous of them all are Japanese Mandarin oranges known as mikan in Japanese.
So, don’t miss the snowfall in Japan or you’re gonna regret it until the time this marvelous country turns into a white wonderland all over again next year! Book your tour to Japan with Fred and Fuzzys right away and seize the best deals!
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