The Tohoku region lies at the northernmost tip of mainland Japan and consists of six prefectures: Aomori, Iwate, Akita, Miyagi, Yamagata, and Fukushima. As it lies at a higher latitude, it is always relatively cooler than other parts of Japan and offers gorgeous snowy scenery in the winter. There’s a lot of charm waiting to be discovered in Tohoku, from unspoiled nature to unique traditional festivities and crafts, as well as the healthy and delicious local cuisine.
Tohoku is full of popular hot spring resort areas such as Aomori’s Sukayu Onsen, known for its gigantic mixed-gender bath; Akita’s Nyuto Onsen-kyo, featuring seven secluded hot springs waiting to be discovered; and Yamagata’s Ginzan Onsen, where you relax while admiring its retro surroundings. Whether staying at a private villa where contact with other guests is minimal, an inn in a less-busy location nestled within Tohoku’s great wilderness, or a high-end hotel, Tohoku is a great place to relax in comfort and with peace of mind.
Tohoku has a wealth of nature to offer, such as the stunning primeval beech forest of Shirakami Sanchi, the picturesque Sanriku Coast, famous lakes like Towada and Tazawa, the majestic Oze Marshland, and Mt. Zao. You can also find traditional Japanese culture and traditions buried throughout the region, such as “matagi,” the old and traditional winter hunters of the region; and Dewa Sanzan, the heart of one of Japan’s unique faiths. With so much to offer, Tohoku is indeed an amazing place for adventure tourism.
Tohoku is home to three national parks: Towada-Hachimantai National Park, full of hot springs and a gorgeous panorama born from volcanic activity; Sanriku Fukko National Park, which was created to help revitalize the Sanriku area after it was hit by the Great East Japan Earthquake; and Bandai-Asahi National Park, a base for the unique Japanese faith of mountain worship and and a place where you’ll find gorgeous lake and marsh scenery. Pay a visit to enjoy the incredible beauty of its nature, healing hot springs, and the traditions behind the ancient faith.
Tohoku has a plethora of amazing nature and historic spots. For example, there’s Matsushima, which shows off one of Japan’s top three views; Hirosaki Castle, which is covered with cherry blossoms in the spring; Naruko Gorge, one of Tohoku’s top foliage spots; Risshakuji Temple, which appeared in a work of famous Japanese poet Matsuo Basho; and Ouchijuku, a post town built around 400 years ago. Check out the top sightseeing spots across Tohoku’s six prefectures in advance so that you can plan the best trip!
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