Top 10 Things to Do in Japan in February

Best things to do and places to visit in Japan in February

February in Japan might be cold and dark, but it’s actually a wonderful month to visit Japan! There are numbers of special events held across the country including the famous Sapporo Snow Festival, and it’s a great time to enjoy early blooming Cherry Blossoms! Let’s check out the best things to do and places to visit in Japan in February 2019!!

1. Sapporo Snow Festival 2019

The world’s famous Sapporo Snow Festival is held annually at the capital of Hokkaido, Sapporo City in early February. The event invited over 2 million visitors last year, and in 2019, it will be held from 4th to 11 February. Sapporo Snow Festival features impressive snow art with hundreds of small and large sculptures made with snow and ice.

2. Onsen

Onsen is one of the most traditional things about Japan that every tourists should experience at least once. Winter is definitely the best season for Onsen to soak up your body in a hot bath and relax. Ideally, stay at one of the authentic Ryokan inn (traditional Japanese style hotel) and enjoy delicious Japanese dishes after Onsen bath. What a treat! Even if you are going to visit only Tokyo, there are several amazing Onsen spots that you can access from Tokyo for a day trip.

Top 5 Onsen Towns near Tokyo
Best Hot Springs in Japan : Japan Onsen Map

3. Winter Illuminations


Winter illuminations are the biggest attraction in Japan during winter, and many long-run illumination events run until February or even longer. Don’t miss a chance to see the most spectacular light-ups before they end!

10 Winter Illuminations in Japan You Can still Enjoy after New Year
Best Winter Illuminations in Japan : Japan Illumination Map
Tokyo Winter Illumination Guide 2018–2019

4. Ski/Snowboarding


Ski and Snowboarding are the most popular winter activities in Japan, and the great ski resorts with high quality powder snow attracts visitors from all around the world. The coldest months of the year, January and February is definitely the best season for skiers as the snow conditions are at top notch.

▶ 4 Best Ski Resorts in Hakuba

5. Yokote Kamakura Festival

Besides Sapporo Snow Festival, there are several snow festivals held across the country. Kamakura (snow domes) is one of the most traditional things about Japanese winter, and Yokote Kamakura Festival is the biggest Kamakura festival which is held in Yokote City, Akita Prefecture. The event features countless small Kamakura snow domes that are lightened up at night and creating the spectacular winter scenery.

6. Kawazu Cherry Blossom Festival

If you think Japanese cherry blossoms are only available from late March to early April, it’s a 100% misconception! Kawazu Sakura is early cherry blossoms that flourish from mid February to mid March. Kawazu Cherry Blossom Festival is held at Kawazu City in Izu Peninsula, Shizuoka Prefecture. You can easily visit there for a day trip from Tokyo!

7. Nagasaki Lantern Festival


What is the biggest event in February worldwide??We can not ignore the fact that 1.3 billion people are celebrating the Chinese New Year 2019. Nagasaki City hosts the biggest Chinese New Year’s celebration in Japan that features colourful lights by over 15,000 lanterns. Nagasaki Lantern Festival is held for 15 days at the Chinatown of Nagasaki City. Enjoy delicious Chinese food, vivid lanterns and energetic traditional Chinese performance!

8. Ume (Plum Blossoms)


Not only the early Cherry Blossoms, but Japanese flower season slowly kicks off in February. One of the most popular and significant flowers in Japan in early spring is Ume (Plum Blossoms), and several Plum Blossoms events are held across the country in February and March in Japan.

Suzuka Forest Garden Plum Blossom Festival 2019

Inabe Plum Festival 2019

9. Setsubun


Setsubun (節分) is one of the most traditional events on the day before the beginning of Spring in Japan (usually 3 February). The event features a special ritual called “mamemaki” by throwing roasted beans to cleanse away the evil spirits. Setsubun celebration is held across the country on that day, especially at temples and shrines.

10. Valentine’s Day

Valentine’s Day is one of the biggest events that is celebrated worldwide. Japanese Valentine’s Day is quite unique comparing to many other countries, since it’s considered as the day that women give chocolates to men. How funny?? Feel lucky if you are a male traveller cos we may be receiving some 😉 But it’s also an amazing time of the year to visit Japan if you are a big chocolate fan cos many confectionery stores offer special edition chocolates and desserts during this period!