How cold is it in Shirakawago in winter?
What kind of cloth should we wear? Let me introduce you the temperature first!
The average high temperature in Shirakawa-go is around 3 to 6°C between December and February; the average low temperature is -2 to -5°C during the same period.
Oh, my god!! The deepest snow recorded 198 cm in February 2017. (Source: Japan Meteorological Agency)
Please be reminded that wearing the appropriate coats, clothes, knit cap and shoes to go to the freezing place!
★Dressing in layers:
Dressing in layers make you feel more comfortable that you could take off your coat, scarf or gloves when you walk inside to the houses or shops, which are usually set a heater, in Japan.
★Head & Neck:
Wearing a knit cap or earmuffs to cover your whole forehead / ears that protect your head and neck from blowing snow and strong wind is very important.
★the Upper part of the body:
Recommendation to choose thermal clothing.
It keeps body warm and then you could put on a wicking fabrics for the second layer and finally a waterproof, windproof and breathable hard-shell jacket.
★the Lower half of the body:
Wearing a wicking base laser on your lower half and topped with a pair of weather-resistant pants.
A pair of waterproof snow boot is a must item when you walk on the snow.
Instead of the boots of Timberland or Palladium, there are many choice, like ABC MART or another chain-shoes-store in Japan.
Tourists could buy one when visit Japan. And also you could use the crampons to avoid a slip and fall on ice.
One more tip, we suggest tourist to carry a waterproof backpack not hand bag.
It is more convenient in Shirakawago. And both hands are free to take a photo or keep your balance on the snow.
Gassho-style inn (Minshuku) in Shirakawago usually offere you the long rain boots if you stay in their minshuku.
Or you could use the rental service at bus terminal to pay JPY500 per day.
Not only the normal warmers, but we recommend to use the foot hot packs!
It could be sticked on your socks and keep your foot so warm when you are walking outside.
It’s easy to find these hot packs at the pharmacy or the convenience store in Japan!
Dragging big suitcase on the snow is very very inconvenience and wast your precious time when you are traveling.
To save your time, please try to carry a backpack or put all your luggage into the locker at the tourist information center in the bus terminal.
Lastly, residential persons who live in Shirakawago village wake up early and get rid of snow by using the snow grooming to make sure the driveway are cleared in every morning.
Removing snow from the roof is also an important job in winter in order to prevent damage to the property and protect travelers get hurts from the falling snow.
If you stay at gassho-style inn in winter, you can see not only beautiful nature, but local life in Shirakawago!
Hope the clothing tips could help you and have a nice trip in Shirakawa-go!