The culture of Japan is exquisite, which is similar to Chinese classical civilization but has unique features. Japan has an ancient capital that maintains traditional beauty, and also has a bustling big city style. Its safe and healthy delicacy, good natural ecology, highly developed public transportation and perfect service industry make Japan a popular tourist destination. The most famous scenes in Japan are red maple leaves, cherry blossoms and hot springs.
Japan is composed of four major islands: Honshu Island, Hokkaido, Kyushu, and Shikoku. Among them, Honshu Island has the largest area and the most developed economy. Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Nagoya and other cities are scattered on Honshu Island like gems. The symbol of Japan - Mount Fuji is located in the middle of Honshu.
Hokkaido in northeastern Japan has a vast and idyllic scenery and famous for its food, snow scenes, sightseeing farms, hot springs, and nature reserves. Kyushu in the southwest corner has a pleasant subtropical climate, and also known for its delicious food and hot springs. With the opening of low-cost airlines, the unknown island of Shikoku has gradually been recognized by travelers. If you like the sea, the Okinawa Islands next to Kyushu is a seaside resort for diving and whale watching.
The climate of Japan is distinct in four seasons, and each time has its own beauty. Spring and autumn are the most popular tourist seasons, the cherry blossoms gradually bloom from south to north from March to May. From June to August, it is suitable to go to Japan’s bathing beaches or in the mountains to escape the heat. Many regions will hold the most popular traditional festivals of the year during this time. You can watch the fireworks with the locals. In autumn, the maple leaves gradually turn red from north to south, and during December to February, It is a good choice to go to the skiing hot springs in North, or watch the whales in the winter in warm Okinawa.
Japan has a mild maritime climate. You could wear a thin coat in spring and autumn, wear sunscreen and T-shirt in summer and down jacket in winter.
Spring March to May
Summer from June to August
Autumn September to November
Winter December to February
Cherry Blossom season is the best time to visit Japan (end march – the first week of April). This is the busiest time as well. If you wish to avoid crowds May and October are good months with pleasant weather. Mid to end November is good for Autumn colours in Japan and winter months are great for skiing in the northern part of Japan.June in Japan is the rainy season and July, August are hot and humid. However, there will always be a location to suit you regardless of the time you visit.
- Sapporo Snow Festival (one week in early February) - Yokoteyama Kamakura Festival (February 15 and 16) - Omizutori in Nara (March 1-14) - Takayama Matsuri (April 14-15 and October 9-10) - Aoi Matsuri in Kyoto (May 15) - Kanda Matsuri in Tokyo (Weekend closest to May 15) - Sanja Matsuri in Tokyo (Third full weekend in mid May) - Hakata Gion Yamakasa ( July 1-15) - Gion Matsuri in Kyoto (July) - Tenjin Matsuri in Osaka (July 25) - Nebuta Matsuri in Aomori (August 2-7) - Kanto Maturi in Akita (August 3-7) - Awa Odori in Tokushima (August 12-15) - Nagasaki Kunchi (October 7-9) - Jidai Matsuri in Kyoto (October 22) - Chichibu Yomatsuri (December 2-3)
Whether you need a visa will largely depend on which country you are from. Most Western countries such as the United States or the United Kingdom have a 90-day exemption period, while countries such as China or the Philippines do not have such agreements. Before leaving home, be sure to check the guidelines on the Ministry of Foreign Affairs website.