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Jun 12, 2019

Your favorite summer getaway spots?

Any favorite places you all have to get away to during the stinking hot summer months? I would love a long weekend away somewhere (ideally cooler!) We did Hakodate/Aomori one summer and really enjoyed it. Would love to hear your suggestions.

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genkidesu

genkidesu

After spending the last several years in the beating heart of Tokyo, I will be spending the next three in the countryside of Japan. I adore this country and all it has to offer - and I'm always learning more and more about life here as I go along!

12 Answers


  • ReishiiTravels

    on Jun 12

    I live in Gifu, so one of my favorite things to do is to go into the mountains of Gifu and play in the rivers and what not. A really popular spot in Gifu is Takayama. I would also recommend Fukui, there is Kanazawa and some beaches, although I do not know that it is necessarily cooler.

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  • Tomuu

    on Jun 12

    For ease of access from Tokyo I've long been a fan of Karuizawa -- really nice to potter about on a mamachari around there and if the crowds are too much you can hop on a train to Komoro and see the castle grounds and old architecture around town. Not sure it warrants traveling long-distance for though. The coast around Miyazaki in Kyushu is as hot as hell in the summer but it looks really nice from an air conditioned rent-a-car. Plus the water is like champagne at that time of year. Cape Toi for the wild horses and cooling sea breezes. Tateyama, Shirakawa-go, Norikura Kogen (Nagano or Gifu) is a nice area. You'll need a car to get the most out of it though. We made the drive from Matsumoto to Tateyama, stopping off a places in between. A good trip. Nasu -- that's Tochigi Pref., I think. Again, you'll need a car but the temperatures are really comfortable in summer and with things being quite spread out I think it might help to dissipate any potential crowds. Lake Haruna in Gunma. Maybe take a Shinkansen to Takasaki and rent a car there for the drive up to the lake. Or I think a bus is an option. Peddle boats on the lake, walking trails, and great curry-katsu (for some reason). Not spectacular but pleasant enough and I think quite easy to get around the lakeshore area. Following with interest!

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  • Tomuu

    on Jun 12

    Just going to add that I've notice the "long-weekend" bit, which probably rules out Miyazaki.

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  • Eli

    on Jun 13

    I second Nasu in Tochigi prefecture. It is not as hot and there is a lot of nature and fewer people. Also, houses are not as close to each other as in big cities so there is not so much heating up due to air conditioning. But you will need a car as public transport is not really an option with some stations where only two busses come per day.

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  • TonetoEdo

    on Jun 13

    For a quick getaway, I often go to Nagano Prefecture. Togakushi Village is not too busy or hot in July, and there are camping and cottage spots. The bus from Nagano City runs frequently. There are many ski mountains that have hiking and summer camping in Nagano. I’m also inclined to suggest Nasu area. You’ll need a car or a bicycle to get around.

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  • Saitama

    on Jun 14

    Another vote for Karuizawa and Nasu. Nasu is probably one of the most underrated places in Japan in my humble opinion. We really love it there, but it is definitely one place where you would need a car to make the most out of your stay. Akita was cold at night in August when we went there one Obon. It was wonderful! Anywhere is cooler than where I live - we live beside Kumagaya and get the same temperatures as there, so - its a furnace! So anywhere up high is cooler for us. I like Shizuoka Gotemba or coastal areas too for cooler nights and lots to do.

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  • thegoodgaijin

    on Jun 17

    Nasu, Karuizawa, and other similar mountain places like people mentioned are definitely good if you must go cooler. But personally I've gone to Okinawa in the middle of summer and found it no worse than any other part f Japan and way more refreshing since there's so many places to swim, snorkel, or scuba dive. Definitely relaxing and good for getting away, but it would be more embracing summer than escaping it.

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  • shaner

    on Jun 17

    Okinawa was terribly humid when I went one summer but it was a very nice place, just make sure you always have an AC nearby if you go!

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  • helloalissa

    on Jun 20

    Oooh, I would love to get to Hokkaido or north during the summer. I'm in Kyushu, so it's more like the beach and the mountains with lots of trees. If you go north in late summer it might be possible to see fall leaves in some mountain areas. I'm thinking closer to Tokyo maybe Nikko is nice because of the elevation? I actually went to Kyushu during the only summer I lived in the Kanto area. It's hard to escape the heat here... hopefully this summer isn't as bad as last year.

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  • JapanRamen

    on Jul 2

    Hokkaido is the best, but apparently it has been getting hot there too.... crazy! Nagano is another lovely place :D

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  • Nice

    on Jul 6

    Going north of Japan is perhaps a good idea for summer get away. I heard that Hokkaido is good place to spend summer, beautiful nature, delicious food and cooler temperature, name it! I'm going to experience myself this coming summer!

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  • Kohaku

    on Nov 1

    I live in Nagano prefecture and I can say for sure that it's quite a bit cooler here than the rest of Japan. I've seen Karuizawa in other comments, which is a good choice. It's easily accessible by train/Shinkansen. Matsumoto is also really nice! Another point in Nagano's favor is a booming craft beer scene. There are a lot of local breweries doing great things! Nothing beats a hot summer day like a cold beer!

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