Zao Snow Monsters
The Snow Monsters of Zao are a rare phenomenon in the world. Known as 'juhyo' in Japanese, the mountaintop-trees at Zao Onsen transform into fearsome 'monsters' around February under heavy snowfall and cover the mountainside. A ride on Zao Ropeway is perhaps the best way to see the Zao Snow Monsters – with evenings bringing a special illumination that is worth braving the cold weather.
The Mogami River in winter
The settled snowfall and crystal-clear air are laid out like a scene from an ink painting – enjoy a scenic cruise all year round down Yamagata's Mogami river.
Oirase Mountain Stream
Tono Furusato Village
A time slip to idyllic rural life.
Chusonji Temple Konjikido (Golden Hall)
A temple covered in gilt that is a UNESCO World Heritage Site and a highlight of any trip to the Hiraizumi area of Iwate. The mummies of four rulers of this area are laid to rest here.