Lake Towada Winter Story Festival
The vivid colors of winter fireworks
Lake Towada straddles the border of Akita and Aomori — Honshu's two northernmost prefectures — and the Lake Towada Winter Story Festival brings the two together every winter. An event site containing giant snow sculptures of samurai and demons, towering up to 10 meters high, is set up in the Yasumiya area of the lakeside.
A walk along Yukiakari Yokocho, a beautifully lit shopping street, is the perfect opportunity to sample the local specialties, such as freshly caught salmon or a steaming bowl of ramen. The area is also renowned for its excellent sake, which is best enjoyed at the stylish Kamakura Bar, housed inside an igloo.
In the evenings, visitors can marvel at the sculptures as they take on a new atmosphere, bathed in colorful illuminations. The famous Statue of Otome is also lit up with candles, and there is an impressive tunnel containing some 160,000 LED lights. The winter fireworks are the daily finale at 8 p.m. — the crisp night air and the echo from the surrounding mountains make the fireworks particularly impressive.
How to get there
Yasumiya is a 50-minute taxi ride from Towada-Minami Station, a two-hour train journey from Morioka Station by Iwate Ginga Railway and the JR Hanawa Line.
Held in February.
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