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Best (and Worst) Time to Visit Japan 2024, Cherry Blossom Time

Best (and Worst) Time to Visit Japan 2024, Cherry Blossom Time

By Vicky LengUpdated Feb. 26, 2024

Japan is a year-round popular destination with four distinct seasons. Each season offers a variety of charming scenery and culture-rich events for you to enjoy.

The best times to visit Japan are in spring (March to May) for cherry blossoms and in autumn (September to November) for colorful foliage. Both periods have pleasant weather.

Japan Weather and Climate

The first trip to Japan mainly includes visits to the central three cities: Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka. The following two weather and rainfall infographics are based on these three cities.

Japan weather by month
I love going to Japan in June for my summer vacation with my kids and family. It's not as hot and crowded as July and August, so we can enjoy doing fun things outdoors together. June is also the perfect time to see beautiful hydrangeas in Japan. I really enjoy strolling around the traditional temples in kimono and admiring the blooming hydrangeas.
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The Worst Time to Visit Japan

Japan rainfall by month

Summer (June to August) is the rainny season in Japan. It is hot and humid, with an average high temperature of about 31°C (88°F), which can feel like 41°C (106°F). It is considered to be the worst time to visit Japan, but it doesn't rain every day so it doesn't really hinder travel.

Plenty of indoor activities, such as ninja experiences and sushi-making, also minimize the impact of rainfall and humid heat. Additionally, July and August are the festival seasons in Japan, making it a good time for families with kids to immerse themselves in authentic Japanese traditions.

June is a better time to travel for families compared to July and August, as it offers slightly cooler weather and fewer crowds (the official summer vacation in Japan begins in July).

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Best Time for Cherry Blossoms in Japan

  • March to April: 10–18°C (50–64°F)
best time to visit Japan

Cherry blossoms in spring (March to May) are Japan's most beautiful scenery, and you can admire them almost everywhere in Japan. They usually reach full bloom from late March to early April (March 24th to April 2nd), making the spring or Easter vacation the perfect time to travel to Japan.

If you want to avoid the large crowds and enjoy slightly lower prices in Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka, the week before full bloom (around March 16th to 23rd) is your best time. Except for some trees where the cherry blossoms have not yet fully opened, the scenery during this time is almost as stunning as it is when the blossoms are in full bloom.

If you want to appreciate the cherry blossoms in April to early May with fewer crowds and lower costs, Hokkaido, the northernmost part of Japan, is an excellent destination for you. It is also the perfect place to experience Japanese indigenous culture. The best time to view cherry blossoms in Sapporo is in mid to late April (around April 15th to 20th).

Suggested reading: How to Plan a Japan Cherry Blossom Trip

Hotels around popular attractions are always booked up quickly, contact us at least 3 months in advance to have the best chance of room availability and choice.

Best Time for Pleasant Weather and Fewer Crowds

1) May is the transitional month from spring to summer in Japan. It's warmer and has clear days, with an average temperature of 15–23°C (58–73°F). It is advisable to avoid Japan's "Golden Week" public holiday from April 29th to May 5th. After May 7th, it is a perfect time to travel as the crowds and travel costs decrease.

2) September and October are cooler months in Japan, the average temperature range from 18-25°C (64-77°F). While there are about ten rainy days in September, there are very few visitors during this time. In October, the number of sunny days increases, and it is also when the maple leaves start turning red, creating beautiful autumn scenery.

Get more ideas about best time to visit Tokyo, Kyoto, and Osaka>>>

Best Time for Cheapest Prices in Japan

Winter (December to February) is considered the cheapest time to visit Japan, except during Christmas and New Year. It is cold and dry, with an average daily high of 10°C (50°F). It is not too cold to travel, making it the ideal time to relax in the hot springs at a Japanese-style ryokan inn and take in the unique scene of snow monkeys.

Just let us know your interests and requirements, and we can help make it happen.

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Japan Weather Guide by Months

Click the sign of each month to check the travel guide information.

  • Jan - Feb
  • Mar - Apr
  • May
  • June
  • Jul - Aug
  • Sep - Oct
  • November
  • December

January and February: Cold and Dry

Winter Lighting in Shirakawa-go Winter Lighting in Shirakawa-go
  • Average temperature: 2–10℃ (36–50°F)
  • Average rainfall: 70 mm (3 in)

January and February in Japan have cold weather with more clear days, but it is not too cold to travel. Top experiences in Japan in winter include soaking in hot springs, watching snow monkeys bathing in onsen hot springs, appreciating gassho-zukuri farmhouses (their steep thatched roofs named after 'praying hands' are extremely charming when covered in snow and illuminated during winter nights), and skiing in Hokkaido.

Festivals and events: New Year is the most important festival in Japan in January. You could experience a bell-ringing ceremony at a shrine to pray for luck in the coming year in a traditional Japanese way.

Get more ideas about plan a winter trip to Japan>>>

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