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2019 February Best Events in Japan

While the temperatures are still quite cold, February is an appealing season in Japan as the winter chill slowly releases with the onset of spring’s warmth. To help you plan a travel itinerary during February, we’ve put together a short guide to the unique events that will be taking place across the country.

Where to go in February:2019 Feature travel destinations in Japan

Index

  • Setsubun and Ehomaki (節分と恵方巻)

  • Sapporo Snow Festival (さっぽろ雪まつり)

  • Kamakura Festival (かまくら祭り)

  • Plum season (梅の季節)

  • Rape flower blossoms season

  • Setsubun and Ehomaki (節分と恵方巻)

    Setsubun and Ehomaki

    Setsubun and Ehomaki

    The day before spring arrives is marked throughout Japan by Setsubun, which translates as “seasonal division”. This festival originated as a time to cleanse from the previous year and drive away evil spirits for the year ahead.

    A highlight of the festival is a ritual known as mamemaki or “bean scattering” when roasted soybeans are thrown out the door of a house or temple while say-ing “Oni wa soto! Fuku wa uchi!” ("Demons out! Luck in!”) If you want to par-ticipate in this purification practice, head to Sensoji (Asakusa), Zojoji (Tokyo) or Naritasan Shinshoji (Chiba).

    Setsubun is also marked by the eating of Ehomaki sushi rolls, which are sold at convenience and department stores across the country. These long sushi rolls are filled with seven different ingredients to represent the seven gods of happiness (Shichifukujin) and should be eaten facing the year’s lucky direction.

    Zojoji Temple

    Zojoji Temple

    Ehomaki

    Ehomaki

    Zojoji Temple
    rating 1879 Reviews
    Address
    Tokyo Minato-ku Shibakouen 4-7-35
    Phone
    0334321431
  • Sapporo Snow Festival (さっぽろ雪まつり)

    Sapporo Snow Festival

    Sapporo Snow Festival

    Held every year in February, the Sapporo Snow Festival is the largest of its kind in Japan and attracts more than two million visitors. The heart of all the action is Odori Park, which extends through the heart of Sapporo, with live music and gi-gantic ice sculptures that are beautifully illuminated at night.

    If you want to see the stunning ice and snow sculptures that have been entered into the festival’s official contest, head to the Susukino area, or enjoy the family-friendly snow slides and attractions set up in Tsudome.

    In 2019, the Sapporo Snow Festival will take place from February 4-11, with more information available at http://www.snowfes.com/english/index.html .

    Sapporo Snow Festival

    Sapporo Snow Festival

    Sapporo Snow Festival

    Sapporo Snow Festival

    Odori Park
    Address
    Hokkaido Sapporoshi Chuou-ku Odorinishi 1 from 12-chome
    Phone
    0112510438
  • Kamakura Festival (かまくら祭り)

    Yokote Kamakura Festival

    Yokote Kamakura Festival

    Famed for its igloo-like snow houses (known as “kamakura”), the Kamakura Fes-tival dates back more than 400 years and in 2019 will be held in two locations. The Yokote Kamakura Festival (横手かまくら祭り) will be held in the southeast of Akita Prefecture while the Yunishigawa Onsen Kamakura Festival (湯西川温泉かまくら祭り) will ignite this charming onsen town in the mountains of Tochigi Prefecture.

    Countless small and large kamakura will be set up and illuminated by candles at night, transforming both locations into a magical winter wonderland. Aside from the kamakura, the event features a range of other activities, including snow raft-ing, kamakura making experiences and delicious local foods.

    The Yokote Kamakura Festi-val 2019 will take place on February 15 and 16 in the city of Yokote while the Yunishigawa Onsen Kamakura Festival 2019 will take place from 26 January to 3 March 2019.

    Yokote Kamakura Festival

    Yokote Kamakura Festival

    Yunishikawa Kamakura Festival

    Yunishikawa Kamakura Festival

    Yunishikawa Kamakura Festival

    Yunishikawa Kamakura Festival

    Yokote Fureai Center Kamakura Hall
    rating 40 Reviews
    Address
    Akita Pref. Yokoteshi Chuoumachi 8-12
    Phone
    0182337111
    Yunishigawaonsen
    Address
    Nikko, Tochigi Prefecture
    Phone
  • Plum season (梅の季節)

    Mito Plum Blossom Festival

    Mito Plum Blossom Festival

    As Japan’s plum trees break out in blossoms, gardens across the country cele-brate this explosion of color. But the most famous celebration is the Mito Plum Blossom Festival (水戸の梅まつり) of Kairaku-en in the city of Ibaraki Prefecture, Mito.

    Considered one of the Three Great Gardens of Japan, Kairaku-en was created during the Edo period and features around 100 different varieties of plum blos-soms. During the festival, you can see around 3,000 trees in various hues of light pink while enjoying the fragrant perfumes. Aside from enjoying the plum blos-soms and drinking powdered green tea, the festival will hold outdoor koto per-formances, guided nighttime walks and fireworks shows.

    The Mito Plum Blossom Festival 2019 will take place from February 16 to March 31.

    Mito Plum Blossom Festival

    Mito Plum Blossom Festival

    水戸の梅祭り
    Address
    茨城県水戸市常磐町1丁目3
    Phone
    0292240441
  • Rape flower blossoms season

    Rape flower blossoms season

    Rape flower blossoms season

    February is also marked by the blossoming of bright yellow rape flowers, which occur in various locations across Japan. One of the most famous spots is along the Isumi Railway in Chiba, with the “Moomin” train jour-neying past rice paddies, forested landscapes and fields of rape flowers.

    Soak up the rural landscapes of the Boso Peninsula on a 26-kilometer-long jour-ney between Ohara Station and Kazusa-Nakano, passing historic stations that date back to 1912. The scenery is a stark contrast to the high-tech streets and bustle of Tokyo and made only more beautiful by the yellow blanket of the sea-son’s rape flower blossoms.

    Rape flower blossoms season

    Rape flower blossoms season

    Rape flower blossoms season

    Rape flower blossoms season

    Isumi Railway
    Address
    Chiba Pref. Isumigunotakimachi Otaki 264
    Phone
    0470822161
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