Special Events

Events in Japan

Spectacular Scenery and Festivals in The Snow

Japan is a snow-blessed country and attracts many visitors during the snow season. This is the season to enjoy many snow festivals and indulge in the local culture. Spectacular scenery and local gourmet delicacies will provide unforgettable experiences.

Here are some recommendations that you cannot miss.

Sapporo Snow Festival (Early February, Sapporo city, Hokkaido)

Festival 2017

The Sapporo snow festival is an annual event that takes place in Sapporo city, Hokkaido and with over two million visitors every year is undoubtedly the biggest snow festival in Japan. The festival features over 200 splendid snow and ice sculptures. The main venue is held at Odori Park where rows of remarkable giant sculptures are displayed. Tsudome site is a fantastic snow play park for all age groups with a number of attractions. Susukino site features many impressive ice sculptures along illumination road. Exclusive food stalls featuring local Hokkaido gourmet items are a must to enjoy! Enjoy delicious charcoal BBQ, oysters and ramen noodles to indulge your senses.

For more information, please visit here.

Hokkaido: https://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/regional/hokkaido/
Around Sapporo: https://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/regional/hokkaido/aroundsapporo.html

Hirosaki Castle Snow Lantern Festival (Mid-February, Hirosaki city, Aomori)

Festival 2017

Part of Aomori prefecture, Hirosaki Park is famous for the Hirosaki castle, cherry blossom viewing and for hosting a renowned snow lantern festival every year. At the center of the festival is an immense snow structure. At dusk, it turns to a giant screen exhibiting magical projections. Featuring large snow slopes, there is also a play area open for children to play in the snow. Hundreds of illuminated snow lanterns can be admired as darkness falls. Exhibited in Hasu pond are various small snow domes lit up with candles, providing a romantic atmosphere. Dress warmly and enjoy fabulous firework displays while tasting culinary delights from a bountiful array of food stalls.

For more information, please visit here.

Aomori: https://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/regional/aomori/
Hirosaki Area: https://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/regional/aomori/hirosaki.html

Winter Illuminations at Shirakawa-go


One of Japan's top sightseeing destination, Shirakawa-go village in Gifu prefecture organizes a spectacular illuminated event during the winter (from mid-January until mid-February).

Shirakawa-go is a historical village and an UNESCO World Heritage Site, with over a hundred unique traditional farmhouses. The village is situated at the base of Mt. Haku-san, in the remote mountainous district of Gifu prefecture. The roofs of the farmhouses are uniquely "gassho" style, deep steeple style thatched roofs. This helps to deter the heavy snowfall during the winter. Between mid-January to mid-February on a designated Sunday or Monday, the farmhouses are lit up creating a wonderfully illuminated splendor that contrasts with the white snow. A spectacular panoramic view exists from the observation platform. The village is located far from any major city and the parking is limited, so a tour is recommended.

For more information, please visit here.

Gifu: https://www.jnto.go.jp/eng/regional/gifu/

Events in the US: Save the Date!

Celebrate Japanese Pop Culture at "OTAKON"

LA Travel & Adventure Show

August 10 (Fri) - 12 (Sun), 2018
Venue: Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Washington DC

Otakon is an annual convention celebrating Japanese pop culture such as anime, manga, music, movies and video games, and accommodates fans enamored with this subculture.

There is so much to see and do at Otakon, including anime and watching live action East Asian films shown on big screens in multiple video rooms. The convention also includes cosplay and a skit-based Masquerade show. Workshops are held on subjects such as voice acting and how to draw manga.

Enjoy dance music all night with a fun crowd featuring local DJs with everything from remixed pop songs to drum, bass and anime remixes. An entertaining fairy tale experience is also enjoyed at the Maid Cafe. Maids and Butlers make any Master and Princess feel welcome.

Don't miss out on this unique annual event celebrating and exploring new cultural experiences.

Please visit here for more information.



October 4 (Thu) – 7 (Sun), 2018
Venue: Javits Center, New York, NY

The East Coast's largest pop culture convention, New York Comic Con attracted over 200,000 fans in 2017 and will be back at Manhattan in October 2018. This intriguing exhibition will play host to the latest anime, manga and cosplay, and will feature many artists and J-POP performers as well as offer a variety of delicious food. There are many things to see and do. In fact, it is a pop culture lovers' dream accommodating every fandom imaginable.

Please visit here for more information.

Information is provided as a courtesy to users of this website. Though the JNTO endeavors to ensure the information is accurate, users of the information are to act on such using their own judgement and at their own risk. Neither the JNTO nor any holder of copyright to the information shall be held responsible in any way whatsoever for any loss or misunderstanding, either direct or indirect, that is incurred as a result of utilizing the information.

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