Best Time to Visit Japan for Solo Travel
Arguably, the best time to visit Japan is during the spring season (March to May), when Sakura (cherry blossoms) envelop the country, and the autumn season (September to November), when the foliage paints the country in vibrant hues.
That said, the best time to visit Japan for solo travel is based on what excites one the most! As Japan is an all-year-round destination, it serves you with unique things on the platter from season to season. Whether you want to explore intimately and hike in Southern Japan or experience festivals and cherry blossoms in Tokyo and Kyoto, every destination has its specialty in different seasons. Thus, understanding your interests and finding the right time to visit Japan is crucial to making the most of your solo trip to the country.
However, before my solo venture to Japan, I surfed several web pages to find the ideal time to visit Japan. The lack of a proper solo traveller-centric answer made me curate my experiences in the country. Therefore, in this blog, I’ve compiled the best times to visit Japan for solo travel according to different events and seasons!
What are the beautiful seasons in Japan?
Japan has four significant seasons – spring (March to May), summer (June to August), autumn (September to November) and winter (December to February).
Of all, spring is the most popular time to visit Japan. Popular, pricey, and touristy! And if the crowd suffocates you, I highly recommend to avoid this season in Japan. Unless it’s your first time and you’re hell-bent on experiencing Hanami, a Japanese custom of flower viewing and Golden Week festivities, a series of four national holidays in a week. In this scenario, plan your solo trip to Japan in late spring, i.e., late April to May.
Spring, followed by autumn, is another people-pleaser season. Be it witnessing koyo, a transitional process of leaves from a green colour to red and orange, feasting on fresh produce, or getting a spectacular sight of the Japanese Alps, autumn has got you covered.
Summer in Japan is typical – rainy, hot, and humid. It is neither considered the best time to travel to Japan nor the least favoured time to spend there. The season starts with rain and ends with typhoons. And if you can handle the heat of the summer, there are quite some pros to enjoy, especially if you are an outdoor enthusiast!
Winter is usually not popular among tourists in Japan. So, if you prefer offbeat experiences, winter in Japan will surely take you by surprise. The blue sky, sunshine, and snow! Could it be any more picture-perfect?
Which is the best month to visit Japan to avoid crowds?
If you wish to keep the crowd at bay, the best time to visit Japan is in winter. Winter is the off-season in Japan, and unlike spring, you do not have to face the insane crowd during this time! As a result, you will also notice a fall in prices. You do not have to pay exorbitant prices for flight tickets, hotel fares, and transportation.
The best time to visit Japan to witness the picturesque cherry blossoms – Sakura
April is the best time to witness the grandeur of cherry blossoms all over Japan. If observing the cherry blossoms is on your list of must-do things in Japan, plan your travel dates in April. Start with southern Japan for the early blooms. And travel towards the north to make the most of the cherry blossom season. Hiroshima, Kyoto, Osaka, Tokyo, and Sapporo are prime places to capture Sakura in its glory.
Add popular cherry blossom festivals to your Japan itinerary to soak in the season’s spirit. One such is the Ueno Sakura Festival in Tokyo in the middle of April. However, check the dates of the cherry blossom forecast beforehand, as they vary from year to year.
What is the best time to attend festivals in Japan?
Attending festivals is necessary to immerse yourself in Japanese culture. August is one of the best times for festivals in Japan. Why? Because August is when most summer festivals take place in Japan.
Of many, the Awa Odori Festival in Tokushima is something to look forward to. It is an Obon dance festival held in mid-August. Besides, you’ll witness impromptu fireworks throughout the month.
The best time to visit Japan for the beaches
During July, you will have the best time on Japan’s beaches. If you are not aware already – Japan is a land of beaches! Japan is one of the best places to do scuba diving. Snorkelling here is equally beguiling.
Apart from a dose of vitamin sea and beach activities, you’ll be swept off your feet once you see the ever-stunning Mt. Fuji from the beach.
The best time to visit Japan for underrated activities
Besides the cherry blossom, Japan has some underrated activities in store! If unconventional things are your forte, you should try to include skiing and onsen in your solo travel itinerary.
Skiing in January in the northern part of Japan is full of adrenaline rush! It will surely satiate your adventurous soul of yours. Once you’re satisfied with your snow escapades, go for a relaxation session in an onsen. Japan is filled with onsen locations, which can be best experienced in February.
Which season resonates with you the most?
Japan is one of the best destinations for solo female travellers. If you are more inclined towards touristy activities, spring is the best time to visit the country. Nevertheless, winter is perfect if you prefer off-season activities and want to explore Japan affordably. That said, regardless of your pick from the above, Japan will never fail to disappoint you!
An introverted blogger who is looking to make unforgettable solo travel memories with one short life.