Lots of people talk about Japan and how it has very distinct seasons, and this is fairly true! Spring is refreshing, and beautiful cherry blossom trees line every street. Summer is sweltering, and filled with beach parties and beer gardens. Autumn (Fall) brings beautiful red leaves and cooler weather, and then Winter can sometimes bring some snow and Christmas decorations cover the streets. But if you really want to experience a real winter wonderland, you should travel a little north of Tokyo, to the snow-covered streets of Nagano.
Nagano is famous for its hot springs, and you can find lots of different bath houses all around. The area is famous for its delicious apples, and you can even find an onsen filled with apples! You can purchase an onsen pass from any of the guesthouses there, and it allows you to visit 12 different baths in the area. You can choose from a really wide range of bathhouses, and they are all within walking distance of each other – so you can spend a lovely day enjoying each onsen!
The deep, crisp snow makes sightseeing even more spectacular during the winter in Nagano – and there is a lot to see! As with any Japanese town, there is an abundance of temples and shrines to visit, but the snow layers all these sights and makes them even more beautiful. The town itself is also a sightseeing point, as some of it is very old and in traditional Japanese style.
The snow and the icicles everywhere make Nagano look like a true winter wonderland!
If you’re planning a trip to Nagano, you have to be sure to check out the monkeys there! A short drive up a mountain (which you can take a bus to) leads you to the last part of this magical wonderland! Lots of natural hot springs scatter the mountain tops, and relaxing in the onsen are hundreds of Japanese monkeys! You can take lots of amazing pictures, and the monkeys are all very relaxed, so you can get quite close up for those snaps!
So, enjoy winter in this magical place, relax, sightsee and take amazing pictures!