The Tohoku region consists of six prefectures on the northern part of Honshu, Japan’s largest island. It is best known for its lakes, mountains, countryside, hot springs, and rough winters. It is also known for producing very high-quality rice.  While the region experienced the earthquake and tsunami of March 2011 (and the ensuing nuclear incident) very little of it has been severely affected and it is quite safe to visit.

Blessed with beautiful nature and home to many beautiful attractions in Northern Japan, Tohoku is where visitors can experience impressive autumn leaves in the fall, cherry blossoms in the spring, green forests in the summer, and snow festivals in the winter.

okama_crater_mount_zao_tohoku
Okama Crater, Mt. Zao in the Tohoku Region. Photo Credit: Tomoaki INABA at Flickr.

Lake Towada is the largest caldera lake on Honshu. It is a part of Towada-Hachimantai National Park. The lake is best known for its spectacular autumn foliage. There are a number of sights to see and the pristine wilderness can be deeply soothing. Oirase Stream is a must-see, especially in autumn. The best way to view the lake and its environs is on one of the sightseeing boats that run in spring, summer, and autumn. You can also drive along the scenic route along the lake.

Aomori is a very northern city in the region and is best known for its Nebuta Matsuri. This summer festival runs from August 2nd to August 7th every year. There are dozens of incredible hand-crafted floats that depict gods and other characters from myth and legend. These floats parade through town every night of the festival, pushed by human power, weaving and spinning gracefully. They are accompanied by taiko drummers, cymbal players, and flute players. There are also vendors selling festival food and souvenirs, as well as a fireworks show to close out the night.

The Shimokita Peninsula is at the northernmost point of Honshu. It is an ax-shaped peninsula. It is best known for Osore-san, or Fear Mountain, a barren and steaming volcanic landscape that is held to resemble Buddhist hell. The mountain is held to be sacred and there is a temple there that you can visit. The peninsula has a rugged, rough landscape. It’s a wild region that experiences frequent harsh weather. This results in frequent closures during the winter. The area’s Yagen Valley has several hot springs to visit.

Located in Aomori Prefecture, Hirosaki is one of the culturally richest cities in the Tohoku Region. It grew up around Hirosaki Castle, which is currently the region’s most famous cherry blossom spot. Hirosaki Castle was built in 1611 and today serves as a pleasant place to walk. This castle is one of the few in Japan that has not needed to be rebuilt after being destroyed. You can also visit several museums in the town and even a few preserved Samurai residences.

Tohoku offers world class hot spring resorts throughout the region, which are in fact great to explore anytime you pay a visit to. Discover its four season’s beautiful scenery, local cousins, suggested itineraries, summer and winter festivals including the historic landmarks, and outdoor activities.

Region: Tohoku
Prefecture: Aomori, Iwate, Miyagi, Akita, Yamagata, and Fukushima
Largest city: Sendai in Miyagi Prefecture
Area: 66,889.55 km2

Kokeshi: Traditional Japanese Dolls from Tohoku

Before getting insight into Kokeshi, first I would like to praise its birthplace called Tohoku. It is a charm area, don’t you think so? Blessed with abundance of beautiful nature, ...
Read More

10 Most Popular Local Foods in Aomori

People don’t visit Japan just to explore its top tourist attractions. Instead, they are curious about the foods that are commonly eaten by locals. Many foodie lovers from all over ...
Read More

10 Best Places to see Autumn Leaves in Tohoku

Leaf peeping trip to Tohoku this autumn would be a great holiday idea for you. In fact Tohoku is considered one of the perfect autumn holiday destinations in Japan. The ...
Read More

Sendai Tanabata Matsuri 2020

Sendai Tanabata Matsuri is the most famous tanabata celebration in Japan which takes place in downtown Sendai, Miyagi prefecture. It is held every year on August 6th to 8th. Tohoku’s ...
Read More

Akita Kanto Matsuri 2020 (Kanto Festival)

During the Akita Kanto Matsuri (pole lantern festival) in early August, Akita city becomes magically breathtaking. Why? Akita is an impressive place. Think about Kakunodate cherry blossom festival in spring ...
Read More

Aomori Nebuta Matsuri 2020

It is summer, is not it? If the weather sounds crazy now because of the heat outside then I am sorry to inform you that reading about Aomori Nebuta Matsuri ...
Read More

Kakunodate Cherry Blossom Festival 2020

In spring, when you think of visiting Akita prefecture, first you must think of its biggest annual cherry blossom festival. The festival is widely known as the Kakunodate Cherry Blossom ...
Read More

Wanko Soba in Iwate | Noodles Dish

Wanko Soba is one of the most popular local specialties of Iwate prefecture especially in Morioka and Hanamaki areas. It is really funny and interesting moment while eating bowls of ...
Read More

3 Best Places to See Cherry Blossom in Aomori

You might have heard of Hirosaki Park’s cherry blossom festival before, which is seen to be the best cherry blossom spot in Aomori as well as in the Tohoku region ...
Read More

11 Famous Sakura (Cherry) Trees in Japan

When hanami is in the air, everything around us seems very stunning and lively. Needless to say, it creates a great festive atmosphere bringing a lot of excitements. When most ...
Read More

10 Best Places to See Cherry Blossom in Tohoku

Tohoku's nature is changing - every day and constantly till something burst into life! Yes, spring is near as we have already received a cool gift “Ume” from our diverse ...
Read More

Morioka Reimen | Cold Noodles Dish

This is Morioka Reimen, not the greatest Sapporo Ramen. Don’t mess up with this! It is one of my favorite noodle dishes that come from Tohoku region. People dwelling in ...
Read More

Apple Picking Season in Aomori

Apple is an icon of Aomori prefecture. If Furano is famous for its lavender fields then Aomori certainly is for its apple orchards. Aomori, the northernmost prefecture on the mainland ...
Read More