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A Regional Breakdown Of The Rainy Season In Japan

A Regional Breakdown Of The Rainy Season In Japan

2017.06.01

The start of tsuyu, the Japanese rainy season, varies from area to area. Use this area guide to figure out the best timing for your trip.

Translated by Lester Somera

Written by Otsuji

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If you’re traveling somewhere, you’ll want to know what the weather is like. If it’s rainy, you may not be able to see the scenery you were hoping for, or outdoor events may be canceled. The thing to be concerned about when traveling in Japan is tsuyu, the rainy season in Japan. Tsuyu runs from May through July, and there will be many cloudy, rainy days during this time.

The troublesome thing is that the timing of tsuyu varies from area to area. That’s why we’ve compiled a rough area guide for when tsuyu begins and ends, and a listing of when it started and ended in 2017. We will start from the south, where tsuyu comes and goes earliest, so use this as a reference when you go traveling in Japan.

Note that Hokkaido and the Ogasawara islands do not experience a rainy season.

Also read:

How to Enjoy Japan’s Rainy Season
Tsuyu (Rainy Season) - Japanese Encyclopedia

Okinawa: First Half of May

What's

Okinawa is known for its beach resort areas

Okinawa, the southernmost prefecture in Japan, experiences the rainy season the earliest. While it has quite charming beaches, don’t forget your rain gear if you plan to visit during May or June.

Usual timing: Starts around May 9th, ends around June 23rd
2017: Started around May 13th, ended around June 22nd

Kagoshima (Southern Kyushu): Late May

The rainy season

Kagoshima’s symbol, Sakurajima

Kagoshima, on the southern tip of Kyushu, is rich with nature and also known as an onsen resort area. The rainy front coming from Okinawa splashes down in late May.

Usual timing: Starts around May 31st, ends around July 14th
2017: Started around June 6th, ended around July 13th

Fukuoka (Northern Kyushu): First Half of June

: What's

Fukuoka’s Famous Nakasu Yatai Street

Fukuoka, a popular sightseeing destination in Kyushu, is visited by the rainy season in the first half of June, and some of its famous yatai street stalls may close during heavy rainy.

Usual timing: Starts around June 5th, ends around July 19th
2017: Started around June 20th, ended around July 13th

Hiroshima (Chugoku Area): First Half of June

: What's

The Genbaku Dome relays the tragedy of the victims of nuclear weapons to the present

Hiroshima and Fukuoka, along with most of western Japan, get their rainy seasons around early June.

Usual timing: Starts around June 7th, ends around July 21st
2017: Started around June 20th, ended around July 13th

Kyoto (Kinki Area): First Half of June

: What's

You can get an unbroken view of the Kyoto cityscape from Kiyomizudera

The ancient capital of Kyoto is difficult to explore in the rain, which comes in June, but the rain-drenched temples and shrines have their own unique majesty.

Usual timing: Starts around June 7th, ends around July 21st
2016: Started around June 20th, ended around July 13th

Nagoya (Tokai Area): First Half of June

: What's

Nagoya Castle and its famous shachihoko

In Nagoya, we recommend checking out indoor attractions like Nagoya Castle and the Tokugawa Art Museum during the rainy season.

Usual timing: Starts around June 8th, ends around July 21st
2017: Started around June 21st, ended around July 15th

Tokyo (Kanto/Koshinetsu): First Half of June

: What's

On long weekends, tourists flood to Asakusa Temple

Tokyo has fun things to do during rainy season, like checking out the hydrangeas and buying goods to handle the rain.
Usual timing: Starts around June 8th, ends around July 21st
2017: Started around June 7th, ended around July 6th

Kanazawa (Hokuriku Area): Mid-June

: What's

The Tsuzumi Gate in front of Kanazawa Station

Kanazawa and the surrounding areas get a late start to the rainy season.

Usual timing: Starts around June 12th, ends around July 24th
2017: Started around June 25th, ended around August 2nd

Sendai (Southern Tohoku): Mid-June

: What's

Sendai’s hero, Date Masamune

Sendai and Kanazawa have the same rainy season schedule. Once the rain is over, it will be time for the Sendai Tanabata Festival.

Usual timing: Starts around June 12th, ends around July 25th
2017: Started around June 30th, ending date not calculated

Aomori (Northern Tohoku): Mid-June

: What's

The Aomori Nebuta Festival, one of Japan’s Three Great Festivals

Once rainy season in Aomori finishes, it will soon be time for one of the famous Aomori Nebuta Festival.

Usual timing: Starts around June 14th, ends around July 28th
2017: Started around June 28th, ending date not calculated

In Closing

Weather can ruin the best-laid plans. If you absolutely want to travel on sunny days, you might want to avoid coming during the rainy season.

Reference: Japan Meteorological Agency

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