Japan Travel Planning Newsletter – February 2020

Welcome to the Japan Travel Planning monthly newsletter for February 2020, which includes information to help you plan your trip to Japan, top travel deals and articles about Japan.

The cherry blossom season will be starting shortly (and many of you are travelling to Japan at this time!) so if you are planning to make the most of your visit then I have put together a heap of tours, information and references for you to better plan your trip.

Coronavirus Update​

A current hot topic is the novel coronavirus which has started in China, of which there are also confirmed cases in Japan​​.  We have had many questions in the Facebook Group, as well as many people deciding to cancel or delay their travel.  At this stage our feedback is that you should read official government information and make a decision which is best for you and your family.  

​​We are gathering a lot of information into our official coronavirus thread in the Facebook group, so ensure you check it out at this link.

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Start Planning Your Trip to Japan

We have been very busy producing new content following our recent Japan trip.  You can check out our most recent articles below:

Key Japan Planning Information

Getting Ready for Cherry Blossom Season in Japan

Many of you are planning to visit Japan for the upcoming Cherry Blossom season.  The latest cherry blossom forecast can be found at this link.  So far the forecast is indicating that the bloom may occur slightly earlier this year. The cherry blossom forecast usually gets updated fortnightly in the early part of the season and then shifts to daily updates.

Current forecasts for the major tourism areas are as follows.  Note that the blossoms are usually on view and at their peak for around one week after the full bloom date, subject to weather conditions.  The bloom progressively moves from the south to the north of Japan, with alpine areas blooming later than close by lowland areas.

  • Tokyo.  First bloom starts 18 March 2020, full bloom starts 26 March 2020.
  • Kyoto/Osaka/Nara.  First bloom starts 17 March 2020, full bloom starts 27 March 2020.

Also check out our new article on the Best Places to See Cherry Blossoms in JapanWe asked for other travel bloggers to contribute their best places to see cherry blossoms in Japan – so this is a very comprehensive article to help you plan your trip to Japan in Spring 2020!

Cherry Blossom Day Tours in Japan

Along with the sakura cherry blossom season comes a heap of great day tour options to make the most of the sakura season.  Here are some of the top options to check out 🙂 :

Resources to Help you Plan Your Cherry Blossom Viewing

Here are some resources to help you plan your cherry blossom viewing 🙂

Voyagin Chinese New Year Promotion

Voyagin is currently running their New Year Sale to celebrate Chinese New Year from 7 January to 9 February 2020 with the following coupon code discounts, note that this deal does not include discounts on Tokyo Disneyland or Tokyo Disneysea tickets or whole of Japan Rail Passes:

  • Spend $US 80, Save $US 5, use coupon code`NEWYEAR5`
  • Spend $US 130, Save $US 10, use coupon code `NEWYEAR10`
  • Spend $US 350, Save $US 30, use coupon code `NEWYEAR30`

To see a great range of popular purchase options through Voyagin to take advantage of this sale I suggest you check out our Voyagin Tours and Tickets page at this link.

Major Upcoming Events in Japan

Other Japan Events

Click on this page for Tokyo and this page for Japan to see the upcoming events.

Snow Monkey Season!

With winter now here in Japan many of you will be planning to visit Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park near Nagano to see the monkeys bathing in the hot springs.  Click here to check out our article:  How To Visit Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park From Tokyo And Nagano In Winter 2018-2019, which details how to visit the park either as part of a one or two day tour, or to visit independently.

How to Visit Jigokudani Snow Monkey Park from Tokyo and Nagano in 2020

Everything Sumo!

Upcoming sumo tournaments:

For more information about how to purchase your sumo wrestling tickets check out our article on How To Buy Sumo Wrestling Online Tickets in 2020.

How to Buy Sumo Wrestling Online Tickets in 2020

Top Articles This Fortnight From the Facebook Group

10 Things You Didn’t Know About Shinjuku by Gaijinpot

It’s almost like a numbers game. From the volume of pedestrians shuttling through the busiest train station in the world or the dizzying heights of the tallest skyscrapers to the multitude of restaurants feeding its hungry inhabitants — and one seemingly random horse trough — here are 10 things you didn’t know about Tokyo’s neon city-within-a-city.  Click here to read more…

14 Traditional Japanese Towns That Still Feel Like They’re in the Edo Period by Tokyo Weekender

With their charmingly retro architecture and atmosphere, these traditional towns around Japan offer a glimpse back in time to the Edo period — perfect for a strolling weekend getaway. As a handy guide for you, we’ve grouped them into regions, and offered a few suggestions on when to go, and things to do while there.  Click here to read more…

The Essential Guide To 2 Weeks In Japan For First Time Visitors by Pretraveller

As a first time visitor to Japan it can be difficult to put together a two week itinerary which will work for you. There are so many choices and options! To help you to develop your own itinerary I have put together three sample itineraries for first timers which can then be easily tailored to suit your particular trip.

My only other comment is don’t be afraid to go off any of these routes! Every person has different interests, and sometimes it is good to go off route as usually those destinations will be much less crowded – I have included an off route itinerary as the final option to consider (which is actually almost identical to the itinerary we did for our first trip to Japan! – I wanted to make sure we had some ‘mountain time’ on our trip, and I was also keen to see the snow monkeys 😉 ).  Click here to read more…

Thanks Anne and Tony.

PS. If you have any questions you are welcome to ask questions in the Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group

Japan Travel Planning with Kids Facebook Group

We have also just started a new Japan Travel Planning with Kids Facebook Group, to help families plan their trip to Japan – if you are travelling as a family please click on the link and request to join.

Japan Travel Planning With Kids Facebook Group
Japan Travel Planning With Kids Facebook Group

Our Other Facebook Groups

We have additional Facebook Groups to have a key focus on planning your travel to Japan for the Olympics in 2020.  If you are planning to visit Japan for this event you are invited to join the groups with details below

Join the Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group

You are also welcome to join our Japan Travel Planning Facebook Group – it is a great resource to enable you be inspired and to ask questions about your upcoming trip to Japan!

Japan Travel Planning

Disclaimer:  This article contains affiliate links.  If you book after clicking on one of these links then we may receive a small commission at no extra cost to you.