Join in the festivities as Chichibu Shrine celebrates its night festival with colorful floats and fireworks. Mid-January brings the mysterious beauty of Ashigakubo icicles to life, while February gives way to wintersweet blossoms at Mt. Hodo. From glorious winter landscapes to dazzling winter lights, Saitama is full of winter delights!
Announced to the public as an icicle spot in 2014, Ashigakubo becomes a winter beauty from January to February. See these natural formations of ice up close and be captivated by their mystic allure. Bright and colorful lights also bedeck the area at night, transforming the place into a dreamy winter wonderland.
10-minute walk from Ashigakubo Station, Seibu Chichibu Line
Business Hours: Best viewing time is January to mid-February
Light-up available on Fri, Sat, Sun and public holidays
Entrance Fee: JPY 300
Among the iconic spots of Chichibu is the magnificent Chichibu Shrine, with its colorful and elaborate carvings depicting dragons, tigers and monkeys. The shrine is also host to the dynamic Chichibu Night Festival, held on the 2nd and 3rd of December. Floats embellished with lanterns and tapestries parade the streets culminating in a dazzling fireworks display.
11-minute walk from Seibu-Chichibu Station, Seibu Chichibu Line
Business Hours: Mon to Sun 05:00-20:00
Entrance Fee: Free
Chichibu's strawberries can be enjoyed from January to June. During this period, several fruit farms in the area offer all-you-can eat options, so make sure to mark your calendars and get your fill.
Just an hour away from central Tokyo, you can shop for great bargains till you drop! The outlet has over 200 different shops, from famous international labels to popular Japanese brands. Hungry? There are plenty of restaurants and cafes with different kinds of cuisine to curb your cravings.
15-minute bus ride from Irumashi Station, from Bus Stop #2
Business Hours: [Shops] 10:00-20:00
[Restaurants] Weekdays 11:00-21:00, Weekends and Public Holidays 11:00-22:00
[Food Court] 10:30-21:00
Entrance Fee: Free
Flowers are not often associated with winter, but Mt. Hodo is home to two types of flowers that flourish in winter. In February, the slopes of the mountain can be seen covered in dainty hues of yellow as wintersweet bloom and fill the air with their sweet scent. Come March and plum trees blossom in different colors, signaling the end of fall and the coming of spring. Enjoy the view from Mt. Hodo's ropeway.
Ropeway: 20-minute walk from Nagatoro Station, Chichibu Railway
Ropeway Business Hours: Open all year round 09:40-17:00
Ropeway Fare: One-way Adults: JPY 480, Children: JPY 240
Return Adults: JPY 820, Children: JPY 410