Seasonal Change in Tokamachi

In Tokamachi, where snowfall can accumulate to two to three meters, the arrival of spring comes late as the snow doesn't completely melt away until as late as April. These conditions create a peculiar landscape which can only be enjoyed here in Tokamachi. At Matsunoyama's Bijinbayashi forest, there is a beautiful contrast of fresh green leaves set against the white of the lingering snow, and an ethereal air created by the snow mist. At the Gimyo rice terraces in Matsudai, you can see both the snow and cherry blossoms at the same time.

Seasonal Change in Tokamachi

When the rainy season ends, summer comes to Tokamachi. The rice planted in the spring grows tall and the region is dressed with carpets of green. New leaves grow on the beech trees in the Bijinbayashi forest forming a lush canopy of green foliage through which gently filters the summer sunlight. Japan's longest and largest river, the Shinano River, becomes the site for white water rafting. In August, people celebrate at the Tokamachi Oomatsuri festival with Japanese folk dancing, niwaka performances and traditional octagonal mikoshi floats.

Seasonal Change in Tokamachi

Autumn is the season of harvest, when the rice fields turn a beautiful golden hue. As the season progresses, the mountains that shape the horizon gradually begin to change in color and throughout Tokamachi: the nostalgia of the autumn's rural scenery. The Kiyotsu Gorge, one of Japan's Top 3 Gorges, delights visitors with its graceful autumn shades of yellow and red set against its stony cliffs.

Seasonal Change in Tokamachi

In the winter, Tokamachi becomes a snowy wonderland. Every year the snowfall exceeds three meters, and walls of snow, high enough to hide a person walking beside them, take shape throughout the city. The rice terraces take on yet another appearance, and the Bijinbayashi forest becomes a serene winter's scene. February's Snow Festival attracts visitors from all over who come to see the giant snow stage and snow sculptures handmade by local residents.

Seasonal Change in Tokamachi

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