The fresh green scenery is beautiful everywhere in May throughout the Japanese archipelago. As I mentioned on the April page, flowers of moss slime and nemophila continue to bloom nicely. If you go to a mountainous area such as Shirakawago, the contrast of the fresh green and the snow remaining in the mountains will be wonderful. On this page, I will introduce sightseeing spots especially recommended for the month of May.

May: Weather and Clothing Information for All of Japan

If you are planning to go anywhere in Japan in May, the following articles provide information on weather and clothing for major tourist destinations. Click on the name of a destination to see articles about the weather and clothing for that destination in May.

Tokyo Osaka Kyoto
Hokkaido Sendai Nagano
Nagoya Hiroshima Fukuoka

Snow melting highlands such as Kamikochi are very beautiful

From April to May, you can travel very comfortably in Japan. The temperature is not too hot or cold but it is just right. Relatively nice weather can be enjoyed nationwide. Tourist destinations such as Tokyo, Osaka, Kyoto, Nara, and Hiroshima are crowded with travelers who are sightseeing. By all means, please visit various places in Japan.

If you traveling for a significant amount of time, I recommend going to the mountainous region of Honshu in addition to Tokyo and Kyoto etc.

Every year in May, snow melts from the mountains of Japan and water flows into streams from the mountains. The sounds of these streams are very pure. Even in the mountainous areas, the trees come to life all at once as the winter ends. The mountainous areas at this time are very beautiful, so consider adding these to your itinerary.

The places I would like to recommend specifically are the following.

Kamikochi (Nagano Prefecture)

Hotaka mountains and Kappa bridge in Kamikochi, Japan = shutterstock

Hotaka mountains and Kappa bridge in Kamikochi, Japan = shutterstock

Kamikochi is located in Nagano prefecture in central Honshu. It is a plateau surrounded by some of the best mountains in Japan. The snow remaining on the mountains is a beautiful sight in May. If you use trains and buses from Tokyo it will be about a six hour commute. As there are many good hotels, including Kamikochi Empire Hotel, which is very popular as a luxury resort hotel, you can spend the night comfortably.

Oze (Gumma prefecture)

Oze is surrounded by beautiful mountains, and sidewalks are maintained in the vast wetlands = AdobeStock

Oze is surrounded by beautiful mountains, and sidewalks are maintained in the vast wetlands = AdobeStock

If you are interested in hiking in particular, I recommend you go to Oze. Oze is a highland with an altitude of approximately 1500 meters. This highland is surrounded by 2000 meters of mountains. People cannot visit during the heavy snowfall of winter.

Every year in May, the snow in the mountains begins to melt and beautiful flowers, “Mizu-basho”, bloom in the vast wetlands. There is no hotel in Oze so people visiting use mountain huts. The mountain huts are relatively big and comfortable. Tourists cannot drive in Oze so people go by bus to the entrance called Hatomachi-Toge and walk from there.

The climate is generally good in May but as the month ends the rainfall will gradually increase. In June every year, Japan will have a rainy season. Therefore, if you plan to travel in Japan during May, I recommend that you travel before late May as much as possible.


Now, let’s plan to make your vacation in Japan the best experience ever!



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