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Regions of Japan

Hokkaido Tohoku Hokuriku
Shinetsu
Kanto Tokai Kansai Chugoku Shikoku Kyushu Okinawa Islands SAPPORO TOKYO NAGOYA OSAKA FUKUOKA FURANO KUSHIRO AOMORI SENDAI FUKUSHIMA NIKKO HAKONE SADO TAKAYAMA KANAZAWA ISE KYOTO NARA HIROSHIMA NAGASAKI KAGOSHIMA NAHA
Hokkaido
Hokkaido
  • Hokkaido
Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush Japan's great white north offers wild, white winters and bountiful summers—a haven for dedicated foodies, nature lovers and outdoor adventure fans seeking an adrenaline rush
Tohoku
Tohoku
  • Aomori
  • Akita
  • Iwate
  • Yamagata
  • Miyagi
  • Fukushima
Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan Fearsome festivals, fresh powder snow and vast fruit orchards—the rugged territory of Tohoku offers a new perspective on travel in Japan
Hokuriku Shinetsu
Hokuriku Shinetsu
  • Niigata
  • Toyama
  • Ishikawa
  • Fukui
  • Nagano
An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare An easily accessible slice of rural Japan offering unrivaled mountainscapes and coastlines, endless outdoor adventure and amazing ocean fare
Kanto
Kanto
  • Tokyo
  • Kanagawa
  • Chiba
  • Saitama
  • Ibaraki
  • Tochigi
  • Gunma
Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife Jump from the neon glow of Tokyo to Gunma's mountain retreats, Kamakura's cultural heritage and the Ogasawara Islands' exotic wildlife
Tokai
Tokai
  • Yamanashi
  • Shizuoka
  • Gifu
  • Aichi
  • Mie
Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan Hallmark attractions such as Mt. Fuji and Takayama coexist with major cities and famous heritage in the center of Japan
Kansai
Kansai
  • Kyoto
  • Osaka
  • Shiga
  • Hyogo
  • Nara
  • Wakayama
The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara The Kansai region is one of contrasts, from the glittering lights of Osaka and Kobe to the cultural treasures of Kyoto and Nara
Chugoku
Chugoku
  • Tottori
  • Shimane
  • Okayama
  • Hiroshima
  • Yamaguchi
Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower Welcome to Japan's less-explored western frontier, where the weather is warmer and the pace of life is slower
Shikoku
Shikoku
  • Tokushima
  • Kagawa
  • Ehime
  • Kochi
Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving Island-hopping, cycling, soul-warming spiritual strolling and red-hot dancing—the island of Shikoku gets you up and moving
Kyushu
Kyushu
  • Fukuoka
  • Saga
  • Nagasaki
  • Oita
  • Kumamoto
  • Miyazaki
  • Kagoshima
The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky The southern island of Kyushu is home to hot springs, rugged geography, undeveloped beaches and volcanoes ranging from sleepy to smoky
Okinawa
Okinawa
  • Okinawa
Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings Fly to Okinawa and discover a distinct island culture born of subtropical sun, white sand, coral, mangrove jungles and the age of the Ryukyu Kings

Weather & Geography

Ski the slopes, hit the beaches, hike the mountains, and dive the oceans—all within the islands of Japan

Weather

Spring
A welcome break from the winter cold, spring is celebrated throughout the country with the arrival of the cherry blossoms. Starting in the south and gradually moving up the country, the blossoms bloom between March and May depending on your location. Cool and breezy with generally sunny skies, spring is a comfortable time to get out and explore the cities and countryside.

Summer
Summer throughout Japan is stiflingly hot and intensely humid—make sure to keep hydrated. The beaches are packed, firework displays explode above the nation's rivers, and street festivals are held around every corner. The mountains offer some respite from the major city cauldrons. Be aware that September brings typhoons that can thwart you travel plans.

Autumn
As the weather cools, the autumn colors light-up the countryside. Starting in the northern island of Hokkaido and traveling south, the dazzling autumn leaves blanket the country between late September and early December. Similar to spring, the fall season is perfect for outdoor exploration and a great time to taste what's in Japan's larder.

Winter
The ski season begins and the northern areas are with covered with Japan's peerless powder snow. Crisp and cool, the weather remains clear throughout January on the mainland—becoming a little gray and uninspiring in February. Warm up with some hot sake and a bowl of bubbling hot-pot.

For a comprehensive look at weather in Japan , the Japan Meteorological Agency website will keep you to date on the latest weather, climate and earthquake information.

Winter (Jan)

T (F) T (C) P (mm)
Sapporo 25.5 -3.6 113.6
Sendai 34.9 1.6 37
Tokyo 43 6.1 52
Nagoya 40.1 4.5 48
Osaka 42.8 6 45
Fukuoka 43.8 6.6 68
Naha 62.6 17 107

Spring (Apr)

T (F) T (C) P (mm)
Sapporo 44.8 7.1 57
Sendai 50.5 10.3 98
Tokyo 58.2 14.6 125
Nagoya 57.9 14.4 125
Osaka 59.2 15.1 104
Fukuoka 59.2 15.1 117
Naha 70.5 21.4 166

Summer (Jul)

T (F) T (C) P (mm)
Sapporo 68.9 20.5 81
Sendai 72 22.2 179
Tokyo 77.7 25.4 154
Nagoya 79.5 26.4 204
Osaka 81.3 27.4 157
Fukuoka 80.9 27.2 278
Naha 84 28.9 141

Fall (Oct)

T (F) T (C) P (mm)
Sapporo 53.2 11.8 109
Sendai 59.4 15.2 122
Tokyo 65.3 18.5 198
Nagoya 64.6 18.1 128
Osaka 66.2 19 112
Fukuoka 66.5 19.2 74
Naha 77.4 25.2 153

Geography

Japan's distinctive curved archipelago rubs shoulders with Russia in the north and populates the Pacific Ocean with its islands in the south. Dense forest and mountainous terrain cover 70% of the country, held in place by the Japan Alps—the series of mountain ranges dotted with active volcanoes that dominate the central area of the main island of Honshu. Highly geologically active, smoky volcanoes dominate the southern islands too and eruptions are common.

Where Japan flattens out, you will find many of the major cities—in some cases built on reclaimed land. Not simply made up of snow-capped mountains, there are many beautiful beaches with some great surfing spots on the country's peninsulas—the Boso Peninsula, Izu Peninsula, and Kii Peninsula among others—as well as many places to snorkel and dive. Heading further south, you will reach the subtropics of Okinawa and its outlying island idylls.

Huge national parks and protected ecological zones house a range of distinctive wildlife and geographical points of interest from Akan-Mashu National Park in the wilds of Hokkaido, to the UNESCO World Heritage accredited Ogasawara Islands , 1,000 kilometers south of Tokyo in the Pacific Ocean. Many islands are uninhabited and nature is beginning to take some of them back in dramatic fashion—visit Tomogashima Island and its abandoned and now overgrown red-brick military buildings.

Weather Forecast

Japan stretches out from within arms-reach of frozen Russia in the north and the steamy heat of the subtropics in the south. In a single day, snow can be piling up in the mountains, while sunscreen is lavishly applied on the beaches, therefore it is important to check the weather forecast for the region(s) you are traveling to.

The following site gives you up-to-date information on the weather throughout the country—including monthly averages—allowing you to plan more easily and pack your suitcase more suitably. JNTO: Weather forecast

Heat Illness Prevention Information