For most travelers, winter is a time to snuggle down and wait out the colder months in anticipation of the spring and summer months that make up the prime traveling season for those in search of that special vacation experience. But for those in the known winter has something special in store for travelers who want to experience the wonders of Japan during the colder times of the year.
So why Japan in the winter? It is simply amazing how much the country has to offer those who want to explore a complex culture, exquisite scenery, and wonderful entertainment options – to say nothing of the world-class cuisine in what has traditionally been the ‘off season’.
The cities and attractions of Japan, best price Japan vacation packages, can get extremely busy during the summer season, but during the winter months visitors are free to wander without the added pressure of enormous numbers of fellow travelers – and there is plenty to see and enjoy.
Take for instance winter sports. Japan has a huge number of mountains that are perfectly suited to pastimes such as skiing and snowboarding. Japan’s Hokkaido’s Niseko region is a favorite with visitors who continue to be drawn the exceptional powdery snow and crisp, clean air of the slopes. Hiking opportunities also abound.
For those who want to keep warm in the chilly Japanese winter and relax there can be no better experience than a visit to the Onsen or hot springs that can be found across the country. Some of the most famous are found in Kusatsu – a town that has built a thriving industry around the hot springs experience. Relaxing in the springs has been a Japanese tradition for hundreds of years and is now enjoyed by people from across the world.
There’s plenty of choices – if you want a five-star experience it’s there for the taking, or simply relax at one of the smaller and no less invigorating resorts.
Of course, ignoring the famed cuisine of Japan would be a mistake and the winter months bring seasonal specialties to the table. Street food opportunities abound during the winter and as the temperature drops both vendors lining the streets and upmarket restaurants bring out their interpretation of a seasonal favorite – Oden. A delicious combination of radish, daikon, yam cakes, boiled eggs and fish cakes, immersed in a comforting and soy-flavored dashi broth it’s a treat that should not be missed.
Those visiting the country during the colder months should also not ignore the joys of warm sake. This is part and parcel of the winter experience and the many different varieties available across the country make exploring this ancient beverage a wintertime adventure.
There is also plenty to be enjoyed on those cooler winter evenings in cities such as Osaka and Tokyo. Both these cities put on light shows during their wintertime ‘illuminations’ that are a joy for young and old.
Ignoring the possibilities of visiting Japan during the winter months will deprive the tour of some of the most beautiful sights that the Land of the Rising Sun has to offer. Put it on your travel bucket list.