UNUSUAL TRAVEL TIPS FOR CURIOUS TRAVELLERS
Japan has a special charm in winter, with mountains and northern regions covered with a white veil.
Winter is a particularly engaging time of the year. The traditional Japanese architecture, powdered with snow, creates an ambiance of amazing beauty that might be admired with the peace and quietness restrained at other times of the year.
MEMORABLE WINTER DESTINATIONS IN JAPAN
The clear skies reveal the spectacular mountains that often surround the cities; even Mount Fuji, which is not so easy to spot during the year, is quite certainly visible in winter from Tokyo and surroundings.
It is the ideal season to visit the UNESCO World Heritage villages of Shirakawa and Gokayama, with their high-roofed houses in the style of gasshō-zukuri – shaped like “hands joined in prayer”. In winter, the area is very charming with traditional homes cuddled amid a mountainous scenery and changed into a magical white wonderland.
Winter is the right time to meet the snow monkeys at Jigokudani Yaen-Koen Park or the dancing cranes in Hokkaido, at the shrine where the red-crowned cranes gather for their annual mating dances.
ENCHANTING JAPANESE WINTER FESTIVALS
The illuminations and light shows for the year-end festivities also underline the beauty of the winter landscape, and not only in the big cities.
Despite the cold although dry air, many traditional festivals, and events are held in winter, turning cold days into a warm and joyful celebration. The most famous snow festival – Yuki Matsuri – is the one in Sapporo, with gigantic ice sculptures, real works of art, which amaze even the most demanding visitors.
And what about an onsen outdoors on a snowy day… plunging into steaming hot water with snowflaking around? A magical moment to take home as an unforgettable memory.
Japan in winter, a beauty to unveil.
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