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AOMORI Guide

Aomori

Aomori is located at the northernmost part of Honshu main island of Japan, and hence its climate is relatively cooler than other regions of Honshu. Nonetheless, it has four distinguishing seasons and thanks to that, it is the largest apple-producing prefecture in Japan, producing huge and juicy apples with a nice balance of sweetness and firmness. Aomori is also famous for its abundant nature including renowned cherry blossoms spots in Spring as well as summertime Nebuta Festival.

 

01. Tatehana Wharf Morning Market

02. Tsuru-no-Mai Bridge

03. Aomori Nebuta Festival

04. Cherry Blossoms in Hirosaki Park

 

Tatehana Wharf Morning Market

One of the largest morning markets in Aomori and Japan takes place along the harbor here every early Sunday morning. Stretching nearly 800 meters long, it is lined with over 300 stores and attracts tens of thousands of people weekly.
Here, you can kick-start your day with a wide variety of shopping and fresh local food.
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You can enjoy some of Aomori’s finest foods at the Tatehana Wharf Morning Market, like the “sea urchin rice bowl" made with local sea urchin, and "Senbei-jiru“, a local Aomori dish of rice crackers dipped in soup. Near the morning market, you can also find "Hasshoku Center“, a fresh fish marketplace where you can taste fresh seafood hauled straight from the fishing port.


 

 

 

 

Tsuru-no-Mai Bridge

The longest wooden bridge in Japan just happens to span Tsugaru Fujimi Lake, the largest man-made lake right here in Aomori Prefecture. (Bridge length: 300m)
Famous as one of the best sunrise spots in Tohoku, the lake surface, lit golden by the morning sun, contrasts beautifully with the silhouettes of the surrounding mountains. Some say its also a must-visit for those who want to live a long, healthy life as well…
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The Crane Nature Park is located near the Tsuru-no-Mai Bridge, where you can interact with Japan’s majestic red-crowned cranes. Some other facilities to enjoy authentic Aomori culture near the Tsuru-no-Mai Bridge would be the Tachineputa no Yakata, the starting point of Aomori's famed Goshogawara Tachineputa Festival, and the photogenic Senbon Torii (Thousand Torii Gate) - lined pathway of the Takayama Inari Shrine.


 

 

 

 

Aomori Nebuta Festival

Massive, lighted lanterns of fearsome warriors and mythical beings paraded on floats and flanked by enthusiastic dancers: The Nebuta Festival is one of the three major festivals in the Tohoku region. The festival, held in various places in Aomori Prefecture between July and August, attracts more than 2 million people every year. Its sheer grandiosity was what deservingly designated it as a national cultural asset in 1980.
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Even outside of the festival season, you can still enjoy the Nebuta Festival all year round at Nebuta Museum Wa Rasse. Here, you can learn about the history of the Nebuta and see up-close the delicate work put into bringing these intricate lanterns to life. Fun fact: the Nebuta Festival in Aomori, the Kanto Festival in Akita Prefecture and the Tanabata Festival in Sendai make up the three great festivals of Tohoku.

 

 

 

 

Cherry Blossoms in Hirosaki Park

The contrast between the Hirosaki Castle and the cherry blossoms is definitely a sight to see. About 2,600 cherry trees of 52 species, including weeping cherry trees and double-flowered cherry trees, bloom here. And come Cherry Bloom Festival time, fantastical nighttime illuminations give them an extra magical touch. This, plus the famed cherry blossom tunnel at the west moat, as well as the oldest Somei-Yoshino cherry tree in Japan (aging well over a 100 years old!) are what earned this park a place as one of the 100 best cherry blossom viewing spots.
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In winter, the Hirosaki Castle also hosts the Snow Festival, where creative snow sculptures and mini snow huts are lit up with lanterns. The glowing candlelit sceneries at this time delights around 200,000 loyal visitors every year. Besides Aomori, other places to enjoy cherry blossoms in Tohoku would be the "Kitakami Tenshochi" in Iwate and the "Kakunodate Samurai Residence" in Akita.

Let's have a look at other Tohoku region!

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