Ultimate Guide to Seasons in Japan

By Kawai Porter | June 3rd, 2021 

When you think of seasons in Japan most people immediately think of the cherry blossoms in spring but what about other events that are unique to each season in Japan. Are you looking for more information about the seasons in Japan? Maybe you are tired of the rain during typhoon season and want an escape. Or maybe your pollen allergies are acting up and you want to know when you might get some relief. Continue reading this guide for a comprehensive guide to Japanese seasons.  

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    cherry blossoms during spring in japan

    Seasons in Japan

    Japan is a very long country stretching from subtropical latitudes to the far north, because of this Japanese seasons can vary depending on the region you are in. Generally speaking, though, there are 4 distinct seasons in Japan: spring, summer, autumn, and winter. Each season in Japan has various cultural festivals associated with them and also natural phenomena such as the famous cherry blossoms. Each of the seasons in Japan also has associated cultural significance. 

    The different seasons in Japan happen at similar times to other parts of the northern hemisphere. Spring starts in March and lasts until May. Summer starts in June and lasts until about halfway through September. Autumn starts in September and lasts until November. And finally, winter in Japan is from December until February

    In Japan, they have the traditional four seasons everyone knows but they also experience a rainy season. The rainy season in Japan happens when large weather fronts collide to cause bad weather for a few weeks. This happens at different times depending on what part of Japan you are in. With Okinawa experiencing the rainy season the earliest and Tohaku experiencing the rainy season last, Hokkaido never experiences a rainy season. Consult this guide if you want more information on when you will experience the rainy season in Japan. 

    cherry blossom trees beside taxis during spring in japan

    Spring Season in Japan

    What is the weather like during spring in Japan?

    As many things in Japan's weather during spring changes as the country goes from winter to summer. The average high temperature in the Kanto region for spring is 20 degrees Celsius (68 F) with a mix of sunny and rainy days. While the average high temperature in Hokkaido is 11 degrees Celsius (52 F) with no more snow halfway through April. In Okinawa, the temperature is much warmer with average highs being 24 degrees Celsius (76 F) and lots of sunny days but the rainy season starts early here towards the end of May. While the warm weather may be back to the Japanese daytime, the night times can still be quite chilly so be prepared for all types of weather during Japanese springtime. 

    What are the best things to do in the spring in Japan?

    By far the most popular and unique thing to do in Japanese springtime is viewing the cherry blossoms in Tokyo from late March to early April. Besides the cherry blossoms, the springtime in Japan also offers numerous holidays that truly let you experience Japanese culture. If you are interested in Japanese culture check out A Comprehensive Guide to Japanese Culture.

     Where is the best place to enjoy spring in Japan? 

    If the cherry blossoms are what you are interested in then I would recommend seeing the cherry blossoms in Ueno Park in Tokyo. If you want to experience warmer weather if it is not May and the rainy season Okinawa would be a lovely place to see during the springtime. I would not recommend going to Hokkaido in the springtime because you miss the beautiful snow of the winter and the enchanting nature of the national parks during the summer. 


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    What are Spring holidays and festivals in Japan?

    White day is the first major holiday for springtime in Japan and is celebrated on March 14th. White Day is similar to Valentine's Day but instead of women giving gifts to their significant other men give gifts to the women, usually chocolates or flowers. The spring equinox is celebrated on March 20th and is a national holiday. The spring equinox is the official change from Winter to Spring from a meteorological perspective but culturally spring starts in Japan at the beginning of March. 

    The remaining holidays in spring are bunched together and known as a golden week. The next major holiday is known as Showa day which is celebrated on April 29th. This is the celebration of former emperor Showa’s birthday. Following Showa day is Constitution Day which is the celebration of the Japanese constitution which was ratified in 1947. Following Constitution Day is Midori day or Green Day which is a celebration of Japanese nature. And the last day of the Golden Week is Children's day, formerly known as boys day. This is a celebration of young men and has many festivities. Hanging carp streamers outdoors is the way to symbolize strength for the young children moving forward with their life. With this, there are no more holidays celebrated in spring in Japan. 

    What makes Spring in Japan unique? 

    Springtime in Japan may have similar weather to the rest of the northern hemisphere but culturally spring is a very distinct time in Japan. The Japanese School year begins in April as opposed to August like most of the world and because of this Graduation happens in March instead of May or June. Springtime in Japan also has the world-famous cherry blossoms blooming all over Tokyo and this is the most unique natural phenomenon in Japan. 

    Pollen Season in Japan - What You Need to Know

    Pollen Allergies in Tokyo specifically are notoriously bad. The major pollen types that affect allergies are Japanese cedar and Japanese Cypress and they cause Hay Fever. The best way to combat this is to either get some allergy medicine if you are unsure about health insurance consult this guide for more information. If getting allergy medicine is not helping consider wearing a mask not only will it help protect you from pollen but it is critical to wear a mask to stop the spread of Covid 19. 

    When is the Graduation Season in Japan?

    Graduation Season in Japan happens in March as the school year ends. This is the time when seniors prepare for their future education or they join the workforce. This is a time of celebration in Japan. Japanese graduates from University are expected to join the workforce and truly become adults. This is a major changing point in many people’s lives and it so happens to be the beginning of spring. 


    Fireworks festival during summer seasons in Japan

    Summer Season in Japan

    Summer in Japan is extremely humid but do not let that discourage you from enjoying the outdoors. The beginning of Summer has the end of the rainy season and the beginning of the typhoon season. This guide will let you know everything about Summer in Japan.

    What is the weather like during Summer in Japan?

    The Japanese Summer is categorized not by extreme temperatures compared to some parts of the world but the humidity is off the charts. In much of Japan, the summer is when the rainy season happens. In the Kanto region, the temperature high will be around 29 degrees Celsius (85 F) but this will feel much hotter due to the humidity. Most of Japan will hover around 30 degrees Celsius (86 F) for Summer but the humidity will make it feel much warmer. 

    What are the best things to do in the Summer in Japan?

    The best thing to do in Japan during the summer is going to the numerous festivals in all of the major cities. But if festivals are not your thing you might want to get spooked to forget about the heat! Head over to our Ultimate Guide to Visiting a Haunted House in Japan. But if you're in Tokyo, you might want to check out our Ultimate Guide to Visiting a Tokyo Beach

    Where is the best place to enjoy Summer in Japan? 

    The best place to be during the summer depends on what you want to do. If you want to go to festivals they happen in all of the major cities throughout the country. If you would like to experience nature there are 34 National parks all over the country but the ones in Hokkaido are only open during the summer. Karuizawa is a town located in Nagano prefecture that is a mountain retreat and a great way to escape the summer heat. 

    What are Summer Holidays and festivals in Japan?

    Summer is the season of festivals with many different celebrations happening all over the country of Japan but these are the major ones. The Tanabata (Star) Festival happens on July 7th or August 7th depending on the region of Japan. The biggest Tanabata festivals are in Sendai in August and Tokyo in July. The third Monday of July is a national holiday known as Ocean Day. to celebrate the ocean. The Next national holiday is Mountain day which is celebrated on August 11th and is a day to celebrate the mountains of Japan. The final festival of the Summer in Japan is Oban which is a Buddhist festival that happens in August to commemorate the ancestors that have passed away. 

    What makes summer in Japan unique?

    The Numerous festivals that happen all over Japan during the summer truly make it unique. The Fireworks festivals give life to the night sky and make perfect opportunities to experience Japanese culture. Another aspect of Japan that makes their summers unique is the insane humidity. While many places experience humidity, the humidity in Japan is unlike anywhere else in the world so be sure to be prepared. 

    When is the University Holiday in Japan?

    While in America universities go on summer vacation from May until August this is not the case in Japan. In Japan, universities go on summer vacation from July 20th until August 31st. This is a time when there are many different festivals all over the country. 


    autumn trees near mt. fuji during autumn season in japan

    Autumn Season in Japan

    Autumn in Japan is the end of the typhoon season but after that it has some of the best weather Japan has to offer. Some of the most enjoyable parts of the mild weather are the photography options in Japanese nature. Also, don't forget the spooky season in Japan with Halloween being a major cultural event.

    What is the weather during Autumn in Japan?

    Japanese Autumn is a mild time of year with the exception of typhoon season. Continue reading this guide for more information on typhoon season. The heat will stick around in the Autumn but the humidity will fade away with average daily temperatures in the Kanto region being around 18 degrees Celsius (65 F) for most of Autumn. By the end of November, the air will become drier and the temperature will cool down to closer to winter temperatures. 

    What are the best things to do in Autumn in Japan?

    One of the best things to do in Japan during the Autumn is to view the changing leaves of the deciduous trees. The natural beauty of the deciduous forests of Japan is unrivaled by the rest of the world. Some other interesting Autumn activities are celebrating Halloween in October or walking around one of the Japanese cities without having to worry about the extreme heat of the summer. The best activity to do in the fall though is to do some photography in Japanese nature. 

    Where is the best place to enjoy Autumn in Japan? 

    There is no one place to enjoy Autumn in Japan. The whole country is covered in trees with the leaves changing colors. National parks are all over Japan and many of them have lush deciduous forests that are great for viewing the changing colors of the leaves. Sightseeing in the cities across Japan is also a great activity to do in the milder temperatures of Autumn. Eikando Temple in Kyoto is the number one destination for photographers to take pictures during Autumn in Japan. 

    What are Autumn Holidays and festivals in Japan?

    There are numerous holidays in Autumn in Japan. The first holiday is the third Monday of September and it is respect for Eder's day. This is a national holiday. The next holiday is the autumnal equinox on September 23rd during the week of the autumnal equinox it is tradition to visit the graves of deceased family members. 

    The second Monday of October is health and sports day. This is a National Holiday to celebrate health and fitness. This day is to honor the 1964 Olympics which was held in Tokyo. Culture Day is November 3rd. This is a day to celebrate Japanese culture. 

    Seven Five Three Day is the last holiday of the Autumn season. This is a day when little girls aged 3 and 7 and little boys aged 3 and 5 are celebrated and their health is prayed for. The biggest celebration of Autumn in Japan is Halloween which is celebrated all throughout the month of October. Consult this Guide to Halloween in Japan if you're interested in where to go, what to do, and the must-try Halloween snacks!'

    Why is Autumn the best season for photography in Japan?

    Photography is a popular pastime for many people in Japan and is a great excuse to visit parts of the country you have never been to before. Autumn is the best time to practice photography in Japan because the temperatures are mild and the natural beauty is unrivaled. The leaves are changing giving a unique look to the landscapes of Japan so if you are interested in photography consider Autumn as the best time to travel around Japan. As mentioned before Eikando Temple in Kyoto is the number one destination for photography but all over Kyoto, there are amazing photography opportunities during Autumn. 

    What makes Autumn in Japan Unique? 

    The Japanese Halloween experience is incredibly unique to Japan. Some other experiences in Autumn that are unique to Japan are photographing Japanese nature. And experiencing a sightseeing trip to Japanese cities is best done in the Autumn. 

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    snow-covered old temple during winter season in japan

    Winter Season in Japan

    Winter in Japan is fairly harsh with parts of Japan receiving more snowfall than anywhere else in the world. With the harsh weather comes a culture shift from outdoor activities in Autumn and Summer to more indoor activities in Winter. Winter can be a great time to experience snow in northern parts of Japan though. 

    What is the weather during Winter in Japan?

    Snow is the main thing in Japanese winter, especially in northern parts. The average temperatures in Japanese winter is a range of -7 Celcius (19F) to 6 Celcius (43 F) depending on the region. In most of Japan, there is minimal snow and they experience a relatively dry winter. 

    What are the best things to do in the Winter in Japan?

    Some fun things to do in a Japanese winter are skiing on some of the best ski slopes in the world, experiencing insane snow festivals in February, and many other festivals. Skiing in Japan is first class with unique powder snow ideal for the sport. It is extremely easy to get to the ski resorts from Tokyo by taking the Bullet train. 

    Where is the best place to enjoy Winter in Japan? 

    Sapporo hosts one of the best snow sculpting festivals in the world and it is a must-see. This happens in February. Nagano and Niigata are the areas with the best ski slopes in Japan. 

    What are Winter Holidays and festivals in Japan?

    The main holidays during winter in Japan are Christmas which is different from Christmas in the west and the main thing is to eat KFC on Christmas day. New Years might be the biggest holiday in Japanese winter. This is a day when the family gets together and prepares for the new year together. The next major holiday is the coming of age day on the second holiday of January which is a day 20-year-old men and women are officially recognized as adults. The next major holiday is Valentine's day on February 14th where women give gifts to men. The emperor's birthday is on February 23rd and is the last national Holiday of the winter season for Japan. The most unique festival to Japan is the Snow sculpting festival in Sapporo. This is the biggest snow sculpting festival in the world. 

    What makes Winter in Japan unique to Japan?

    Winter in Japan is ideal for viewing the snow sculpting festival in Sapporo but Winter is much more than just snow sculptures. Major holidays such as New Year's day and coming of age day are unique to Japan as well. 

    Up for a fun winter activity? Check out this article:  Ultimate Guide to Skiing in Japan


    Typhoon Season in Japan

    One of the Seasons in Japan is not one of the traditional four seasons. Typhoon is a word used to describe storms in the pacific instead of Hurricanes. Typhoon season is when typhoons ravage Japan. Be sure to be prepared for the typhoon season in Japan. 

    What is Typhoon Season?

    Typhoon is the word to describe storms in the pacific ocean. In Japan, the typhoon season is when the country is most harmed by typhoons. Usually, about 25 typhoons hit Japan every year. A typhoon is similar to a hurricane with heavy rain and winds being common. Flooding is also likely in the worst of typhoons. 

    Where is most affected by typhoon season? 

    Okinawa is by far the most affected by typhoons. This is because typhoons typically hit the southern part of Japan the hardest. Airlines can also be affected by typhoons in Japan so be sure to be prepared for all possibilities during typhoon season. 

     When is Typhoon Season? 

    Typhoon season in Japan is from July to October. While this is the timeframe most typhoons happen in July and September. Be sure to check out updates from accredited meteorological services if you are worried about typhoons in Japan. 


    Seasons in Japan can mean a number of different things. The four traditional seasons being the most common of Spring, Summer, Autumn, and Winter. These are not the only seasons in Japan though the graduation season, pollen season, and typhoon season are all other seasons in Japan. I hope this guide was helpful for any questions you had about seasons in Japan. 


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