Yamagata Prefecture, located in the Tohoku region on the Sea of Japan coast, can be reached in 1 hour by airplane and in 2.5 hours by Shinkansen bullet train from Tokyo.
In ths video, you’ll meet a man who grew tired of living in a crowded city, and wanted to move back to Yamagata. He returns to Yamagata, and realizes the good things about Yamagata once again. There are of many delicacies that Yamagata can be proud of, not just in Japan, but to the whole world.
Yamagata is known for its cherries
Yamagata produces around 70% of all the cherries in Japan. Cherry-picking is something that is unique to Yamagata.
Cherry-picking can be enjoyed in the cities of Tendo, Kaminoyama, Nanyo, Higashine, and Tsuruoka. We recommend picking cherries in the morning, which is when they are the sweetest, so wake up a little earlier to enjoy this one-of-a-kind activity! There are also tours where you can participate in cherry-picking, as well as visit other tourist spots.
Another great thing about Yamagata is that, even when it’s not cherry-picking season, you can enjoy many other fruits, such as melons, watermelons, and peaches.
They are also particular about ramen in Yamagata
People living in Yamagata Prefecture go out to eat ramen more often than any other people in Japan. Because people in Yamagata love ramen so much, there are many delicious ramen restaurants. One main characteristic of Yamagata’s style of ramen is that the soy sauce based soup has Chinese noodles in it. There are many soba restaurants within the prefecture that also serve ramen, and the ramen in each restaurant has its own unique taste.
Nanyo City even has a ramen division that was made together by the city and the citizens!
Besides the popular Yonezawa beef, seabream is also delicious
Yamagata Prefecture has delicious fish and meat, as well. Yonezawa beef, known as one of the best types of Japanese “wagyu” beef, and is a famous product of Yamagata. Yonezawa cows are fed delicious water, and shown a lot of affection when they are raised. The fine Yonezawa beef can be enjoyed in dishes like sukiyaki or shabu-shabu in many restaurants.
The volume of natural sea breams caught in Yamagata is also the highest in the whole country!
Every year, around 130 different types of marine products are caught from the shore of Shonai, so you can enjoy fresh seasonal seafood any time of the year.
You should try some of these famous foods together with delicious “Tsuyahime”, which is a famous rice variety from Yamagata.
What kind of festivals are there in Yamagata?
Yamagata Hanagasa Matsuri, which is known for the performers yelling “Yassho! Makassho!” during the parade, is one of the four big summer festivals in Tohoku region. Dancing children, wearing gorgeous costumes, and holding umbrellas with safflowers attached to it, makes the festival quite lively.
There is also a place in the parade lineup where you can join the parade on the spot, so why don’t you try spending a midsummer night at this festival in Yamagata? The festival is held every year from August 5 to August 7.
Besides the famous products introduced here, there are plenty of other delicacies that you can enjoy, regardless of the season! When you look at the people from Yamagata smiling in the video, you really get a feel how friendly place Yamagata is.
Why don’t you visit lovely Yamagata Prefecture?