Visiting Japan In April A Guide To Weather And Events

If you are wanting to travel to Japan, there is no doubt that one of the best times to travel there is in April. The beginning of April is when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom, and the rest of April is full of festivals and great weather.

April in Japan is generally the best time to visit because temperatures can range anywhere from about 41 F up to 77 Fahrenheit depending on where you are. This comfortable temperature is great for the many festivals that happen in Japan in April.

Mount Fuji In Spring

The northern part of the country will have colder temperatures, and you can expect to still see snow in late March. If you are going from the end of March into the beginning of April, you may still be able to enjoy some winter activities like skiing.

These activities can only be done in the most northern parts of Japan like Sapporo, Hokkaido, and Hakodate.

What is the weather like in Northern Japan?

Northern Japan is surprisingly cold in April during their spring season. April can have weather that is generally above 32 F but it can go below that if they are experiencing some non-typical weather. 

April Snows In Northern Japan

Usually, Northern Japan will have temperatures between 35 Fahrenheit and 59 Fahrenheit. 

The most northern island of Japan, Hokkaido, has one of the larger cities, Sapporo, which has some great site seeing and resorts. 

You can also view the cherry blossom trees here, but they will bloom a little later compared to the rest of Japan. You can expect the cherry blossoms to be in full bloom the first or second week of April depending on the year’s weather patterns.

Cherry Blossom Festival

There are many online calendars for predicting the cherry blossoms, so keep an eye out and keep this in mind when booking your vacation to Japan.

What is the weather like in April in Tokyo?

Generally, Tokyo in April has some very nice weather. It can range anywhere from 50 Fahrenheit to 68 Fahrenheit. 

Tokyo is on the largest island of Japan, Honshu, and is the most well-known city in Japan. Japan is a bustling busy city with just shy of 30 million people in the metropolitan area.

Tokyo Skyline View

Tokyo is a great place to view the cherry blossoms in April, which bloom usually during the first week of April due to the warmer weather.

If you are planning on spending extended time around Tokyo for the duration of your trip, it is best to book all of your stays at least 3 months in advance. With the population so large and the busiest tourist season being in April, accommodations fill up quickly. 

What about the other cities in Honshu?

Compared to Tokyo, the weather is pretty similar for other larger cities on Honshu like Kyoto and Okasa. It generally stays between 50 Fahrenheit 68 Fahrenheit. 

It can get much colder the more north you go and the closer to Hokkaido you get, so keep this in mind.

Sapporo Snow Festival

What about the weather in Southern Japan?

The main island of Honshu runs alongside one of the most southern islands, Shikoku, and Kyushu is just beneath both of them. These areas are slightly warmer than everywhere else.

Areas like Fukuoka will have similar temperatures to Tokyo, while even more southern Islands like Okinawa will have temperatures between 60 Fahrenheit and 75 Fahrenheit.

Winters In Okinawa Are Mild and Warmer Than Most Of Japan

What should you wear in April in Japan?

This will depend on where exactly you are going, but because the average temperature in most places is about 59 Fahrenheit, you can dress according to this temperature.

April Snows In Japan December Thru March

Most people will bring a light jacket that they can carry with them easily, it is known to rain in April from time to time, but nothing extreme as the summer rainy season. 

You should have good footwear as well as most of your time will be spent walking. If you plan on hiking any of the trails, it is a good idea to bring hiking boots.

In the northern parts of Japan, during the first week of April, it can be quite cold. If you are planning on doing some winter activities like skiing, you will need a heavier winter jacket and warm clothing.

Skiing In Japan

For your regular streetwear, long pants, sneakers, and sweaters should be enough most time. When it gets warmer during midday, you can take off the sweater and a t-shirt should be fine.

What else should I pack? 

Besides appropriate clothing, there are a couple of things we recommend you bring on your exploration of Japan.

Make sure you have a smaller backpack that you can carry your belongings in. Because the weather can go from cooler in the morning to warmer by the afternoon, it will be handy to have a bag to store your sweaters or jackets in.

Also, a backpack is great to carry any water you bring or any snacks. It’s always a good idea to bring extra water and snacks for longer walks and hikes.

You should also consider bringing any extra battery packs or chargers you may need, along with any camera gear. Some people will be fine with just their phone, but if you have a nicer camera, you will want to bring it as April can be a great month for photographs.

What are some things to do in Japan in April?

One of the most popular things to do in Japan in April, and the reason why many people visit this time of year, is for Hanami – parties that locals and tourists have to view the cherry blossoms.

This is also called Sakura season, which runs from March 15th to April 30th. This is the time when the cherry blossoms bloom but it is generally the last week of March into the first two weeks of April.

Hanami Festival In Japan

Cherry blossoms bloom anywhere from the last week of March into the first two weeks of April. 

If you are planning on going to an area where there are thousands of cherry blossom trees, like Tokyo or Osaka, you will want to get there very early. Some people will arrive early to get the best spots; they will even reserve a spot the day before. 

If you are wanting to stay in the area, you will want to reserve accommodations well in advance. Hanami brings people from all over the world to see the blooming of cherry blossoms. 

Sakura Festival In Japan

There are also many walking tours and hiking trails all over Japan that are beautiful and are great for beginners and intermediate hikers. 

Many cities will also have hot springs and hot spring retreats that you can partake in. Hot springs are only in certain areas of the world, so try them out and relax in the warm bath of Japan’s famous Onsen.

April Weather In Japan

What festivals and events happen in Japan in April?

April is a month when many festivals happen in Japan. It is perfect because the weather has broken from winter and it is not yet hot and humid in the summer months.

Miyako Odori

Miyako Odori is a performance that happens every day between April 1st and April 23rd except on Mondays. It is a geisha show where you are served hot tea to begin and is held at the famous Kaburenjo Theatre, and has been going since 1873.

Miyako Odori Performance Information Via Wikipedia

Inuyama Festival

The Inuyama Festival happens at the beginning of April and takes place at the Haritsuna Shrine. This festival consists of long parades with very tall floats.

These floats are brought throughout the town, which has very narrow streets. At night these floats are lit with hundreds of lanterns and are a beautiful site to see.

Inuyama Festival Official Website

Takayama Spring Festival

This two-day festival runs from April 14th to 15th and consists of a parade of antique priceless floats. The floats are very tall and taken throughout the city of Takayama.

Because of the location of Takayama, this is a great festival because the weather is usually excellent. It is just warm enough to wear pants and a sweater for most of the day and will be around 59 Fahrenheit.

Takayama Spring Festival Official Website

Kanamara Matsuri

The Kanamara Matsuri festival is not for the shy. This festival when translated means the Steel Phallus or a celebration of male genitalia.

This festival has gained a lot of popularity because of its increased media coverage, and people seem to always have a great time.

Kanamara Matsuri Festival Via Wikipedia

This festival happens on April 4th in Kawasaki, which is just south of Tokyo. Usually, there is decent weather at this time, averaging around 50 Fahrenheit or warmer.

This festival has several different penis statues and sometimes floats, and has a heavy Mikoshi that is carried through the town.

What is Golden Week?

Golden week is the week in which many holidays fall on in Japan that runs from April 29th to May 5th. This is a week that many families will take their vacation throughout Japan because the holidays are so close together.

The holidays celebrated during this time are Showa Day (April 29th), Constitution Day (May 3rd), Greenery Day (May 4th), and Children’s Day (May 5th).

Tokyo Tower During Golden Wek Flying Koi Windsocks or Koinobori

Showa Day

Showa Day is the first holiday celebrated during Golden Week in Japan and falls on April 29th. This holiday celebrates the rebuilding of Japan post-WWII and the hard work of the Japanese people. 

Showa was an Emperor during the Showa Era between 1926 to 1989. April 29th was at first celebrated as Showa’s birthday, and now it is celebrated as both his birthday and remembering the bright future that the Japanese people were building during that time.

Imperial Palace Tokyo Home Of The Emporer Of Japan

Constitution Day

Constitution Day is the second holiday during Golden Week and falls on May 3rd. Constitution day is the celebration of the enactment of the constitution of Japan that happened in 1947.

Greenery Day

Greenery Day is the third holiday that happens during Golden Week on May 4th. Greenery Day is similar to what happens on “Earth Day” in many other countries.

Greenery day in Japan is a day to appreciate nature in all its beauty. Many people will pick up garbage from the street and be more environmentally conscious on this day.

Greenery Day used to be celebrated on April 29th, but in 2007 it was changed to May 4th and April 29th became Showa Day.

Adachi-Museum of Art Garden

Children’s Day

Children’s day is the final celebration during Golden Week and falls on May 5th. Children’s day is often said to be the most important day of Golden Week.

Children’s day is a celebration of the happiness that children have and their innocent nature. Usually, the streets are decorated with windsock carps, which are a type of fish called koi. 

Koinobori Can Be Seen Flying At The End Of April And Into May

Different colored paper carp will represent different members of the family.

There is a children’s story that follows a carp up the river, which turns into a dragon, and then the dragon flies to heaven. This is why the streets are decorated with carps.

What Japanese food should you try in April?

Since there are so many tourists and festivals happening during April, this means there is no shortage of food.

Some of the best foods to try during this time of year will be food inspired by cherry blossoms. These foods are usually only made this time of year and are incorporated into many different foods.

From candy bars to beers and wines, you will be able to find new cherry-flavored foods in April.

Sakura Flavored Sweets In Japan

Besides having foods that are inspired by cherry blossoms, another fine food to try that is in season is the Tai, which is a type of fish known as the “king of fish”.

Tai is a fish that is only brought out during festivals, celebrations, and special occasions, so make sure to look out for this dish.

Japans Meteorological Agency Forcast By Cities Across Japan

Other typical foods to look out for are just traditional Japanese cuisine, like takenoko which is a bamboo shoot. Ask locals about where their favorite places to eat are as well.

Because most of the festivals that happen in April are so rich in history and culture, you will surely be able to find some traditional foods and sake as well.

Sakura Festival In Japan’s Springtime

My fascination with Japan began several years back at a roadside bonsai stand while on vacation. I became more interested in the where and why's more than the trees themselves. My love of Bonsai led me to further research my interest in the gardens where they originated from and the places and people that surrounded those little trees. My curiosity was well rewarded upon visiting Saitama where the National Bonsai Museum was located and Omiya Village the bonsai mecca for lovers of this ancient art form. Exploring many towns and villages and even making my way to Japan's furthest southern prefecture of Okinawa. I hope to share my love of this wonderful and exotic place with all those who want to know more about Japan.