The best thing about the fall in Japan

Fall is arguably the best season in Japan. Even if you don’t agree with me now, maybe you’ll agree with me by the end of this.

There are many reasons to love fall, and it caters to all our senses. We’ve got beautiful autumn leaves for our eyes and ears, delicious food for our noses and stomachs, and the most important of all is that it isn’t hot or humid anymore.

As the summer heat and humidity subsides, shades of red, orange, yellow, and everything in between gradually dyes the mountainsides of Japan. The French author Albert Camus said, “Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” While spring represents “birth,” fall is like a fiery requiem that celebrates their life.

When I think of fall in Japan, I think of delicious mushrooms and the smell of hot, roasted chestnuts coming from street vendors. Having lived in Sendai, I also miss the Tohoku tradition of having imonikai by the riverside with family, friends, and colleagues. If vegetables aren’t your cup of tea, Pacific saury and salmon are also in season.

Finally, there’s the climate. I think it’s superior to all the other seasons. Spring is usually the start of the rainy season, which means it’s wet and warm, summer is hot and humid and winter is cold and too dry due to heaters being used. Autumn is the perfect temperature for us to wear clothes we actually want to wear and not only because it’s too hot or too cold. Compared to Canada, we don’t see much rain or gloomy weather in the fall in Japan. This is important because our laundry still dries outside during the day, and it’s also not too hot or cold that we need to turn on our air conditioner! This means we can save on electricity fees and use them on autumn food instead.

Autumn is often short-lived, but that is all the more reason we should embrace it and enjoy it for the mere fact that we still have three more seasons to go through before autumn returns.


subside (v) – to become less strong or intense
requiem (n) – an act of remembering a dead person
not one’s cup of tea (idiom) –something you don’t like very much or something you’re not good at