The Tohoku region consists of six prefectures. It is famous for the rural landscape, mountains, lakes and hot springs. Enjoy outdoor activities in summer and also skiing in winter in this vast land. Each prefecture has its own traditional summer festivals. One of the most famous ones is Aomori's Nebuta Festival.
Enjoy the magnificent views of Matsushima Bay, which is ranked as one of the three most scenic spots in Japan. It only takes about 40 minutes by train and walks from Sendai City, the capital city of Miyagi prefecture. A boat ride is the best way to see the 260 islands in Matsushima Bay. In winter, you can enjoy oysters and other seafood to the fullest!
Mt. Zao straddles over Yamagata and Miyagi prefectures, and the Zao hot spring on the Yamagata side is known for its strong acidity that makes your skin and blood vessels rejuvenate. Snow covers the Zao mountains in winter making this area to be one of the best hot spring ski resorts in Japan. An unusual natural phenomenon called snow monsters can also be seen on the top of the Zao mountain.
Kakunodate Town in Akita prefecture is known as a castle town with many historical buildings. In spring, you can enjoy hundreds of weeping cherry trees with a beautiful bloom of cherry blossom flowers. The samurai residences have a history of about 400 years. A historical museum located in Kakunodate offers a hands-on experience of touching a sword. You will have a chance to feel and touch Japanese history.
As the largest city in the Tohoku region, Sendai is the best central city for traveling around Tohoku. During the Tanabata Festival held every summer, shopping streets in the center of the city are decorated with gorgeous ornaments. Several gourmet foods such as Gyutan (Beed Tongue), Zunda (Mashed green soybeans), and Chilled noodles are famous as well, and they are all must-tries when you are in Sendai. The city is also famous for Date Masamune, a warlord who laid the foundation for the city of Sendai, and you can learn about his history from various related tourist attractions.