The Best Times to Visit Akita

Senshu Park in Spring
Senshu Park is known for its beauty in all four seasons, but is especially beautiful in the spring. The park has over 800 sakura cherry trees that all bloom at the same time. It’s at this time that there are festivals that happen, where people play large taiko drums and come to the park to “Hanami” or flower watching. The nearby moats also have lotus flowers that float on the surface, adding a uniquely Japanese aesthetic to the park. It is also located right next to the station, so there’s no need to travel far to enjoy nature.

Photo Cred: Flickr user rosino[email protected]/2817642029/
Akita Kanto Festival in Summer
The Kanto Festival in Akita is the representative festival of the prefecture. Held from August 3 to 6, the festival is most famous for the performers that balance long poles with dozens of lanterns on their hands, heads, and shoulders, day and night during the festival. The whole festival is held on the main road in Akita city, and each night there are nightly parades where over 200 performers raise up their poles in unison to show off their skills for 90 minutes. Afterwards, if you're lucky you can participate for 15 minutes to try to balance the pole yourself. During the daytime, there are balancing competitions where teams compete in balancing poles.

Photo Cred: Flickr user[email protected]/29605559675/
Kakunodate Samurai Housing in Autumn
Kakunodate is a small traditional samurai district located in Akita prefecture, and is remarkably well-preserved. In Autumn especially, with the surrounding trees in autumn colors, the neighborhood looks like you’ve time traveled back to the Edo period. There are many houses in the district, but the best-looking houses may require some money to get in. The district is a three-hour bullet train ride away from Tokyo.

Photo Cred: Flickr user tsushima2011[email protected]/6714451957/
Snow Monsters in Winter
Akita prefecture is well known for its mountains and hiking trails. During Summer, Akita has great hiking opportunities, but during the winter the mountains take on a completely different landscape. Because of Akita’s chilling cold, trees on the Moriyoshisan mountain become enveloped in sheets of snow, transforming them into “snow monsters”. To get the best view of this phenomena, you can take the Ani gondola that goes from the Sanroku station to Sancho station. 

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