So you’re ready to live in Yamagata. But where, exactly, will you end up? And what is this ‘Touhoku’ place that you’re hearing about?
Chances are that if you’ve never been to Japan, Touhoku hasn’t been on your list of places to visit. Located in the northern region of the main island (not including Hokkaido), this region houses 6 prefectures - Aomori, Iwate, Akita, Miyagi, Yamagata and Fukushima. If you’ve been placed in any of these prefectures, you will be living in Touhoku.
In many ways, Touhoku remains out of the reach of popularity among foreign tourist attractions. Although it’s beautiful and houses much of Japan’s nature and homely countrysides, it doesn’t have a lot of big cities. The main one is Sendai, located on the east side of Miyagi prefecture, and it is within relatively easy access from the other prefectures by train, bus or shinkansen.
The climate might be of some concern to those of you coming from hotter regions. In the winter, Touhoku is quite cold and tends to experience a LOT of snowfall. Make sure to pack a nice winter coat and boots if you’re coming over - but don’t forget to pack a sense of adventure as well! Because of the snow, there are numerous mountains and slopes for skiing and snowboarding, so there’s never a boring day, even in the winter.
In the summer, the temperatures climb to the 30s and it gets incredibly humid. Because of this, you will want to find yourself a comfortably cool river or even travel to the seaside or the ocean to cool off in the beautiful, clean waters.
So, what is there to do?
Touhoku is a great place to see the real Japan - the side that isn’t sold to visitors through popular advertisements and foreigner-friendly designed shops. Through living in Touhoku you will get the privilege of seeing incredible nature reserves, mountains - get to participate in planting rice and take part in local festivals.
**Aomori Nebuta Festival**
**Akita Kanto Festival**
*Miyagi Zao Crater*
These AND MORE are waiting for you to explore in the grand, lush region of Tohouku.