Snow and illumination events are something to definitely look forward to in Japan. Some notable snow and illumination events are in the Lake Shikaribetsu Kotan, Asahikawa Winter Festival, and Sapporo Snow Festival in Hokkaido. The Sapporo Snow Festival is one of the largest and most popular winter event and there are snow sculptures that are illuminated at night which is definitely a must see. At the Asahikawa Winter Festival it has snow sculptures known for their size and holds as the largest snow structure in the Guinness World Record. Tokyo also has the Marunouchi Winter Illuminations, Osaka has the Festival of Light in Osaka, and many other places around Japan too. For more places check out this list here.
Other things you could do in Japan during the winter is snowshoeing or even going to see the snow monkeys at Jigokudani Monkey park. You could even go to Nagashima Island in the Nabana no Sato theme park with a beautiful small botanical garden and a hot spring that starts mid-November until mid-March. The garden is a fantasy land with the tunnel of light clouds and flowers displayed everywhere. With the number of lights lit up, it makes you feel like you are in a different world.
The National Holidays in Japan in the winter is: November 3 is Culture Day, November 24 Labour Thanksgiving Day Observed, December 23 Emperor’s Birthday, January 1 is New Year’s Day, The second Monday of January is the Coming of Age, and February 11 is Foundation Day.
Have you been to Japan during the winter? If so, what were your favorite activities?