Yamagata is an area centered around Yamagata Prefecture’s main city Yamagata City. Yamagata is well known as a production center for rice and fruits such as cherries. It is also the home of Japan’s largest “imoni-kai” festival, where 30,000 “imoni” meals are cooked in the space of just one day, using a huge pot. (Imoni is a kind of potato stew.)
For sightseeing spots, there is the Kami-no-yama Onsen which has been in operation since the 1400s, as well as Risshaku-ji Temple which is a mountain temple located at the top of staircase with over 1,000 steps. Other recommended locations include the Hiroshige Museum of Art which houses numerous works by the world-famous ukiyo-e artist Utagawa Hiroshige, and the Bunsho-kan, Yamagata City Folk Museum which utilizes a building from the Taisho Era.
Train and bus travel is recommended for traveling around the area. Yamagata can be conveniently accessed via Shinkansen from various areas of Japan. The nearest train station is Yamagata Station, which can be accessed in about 3 hours via Shinkansen from Tokyo. Yamagata Airport is connected to Haneda, Nagoya, and Itami Airports, and from the airport you can travel to the city via train or bus.
Tourism information: Yamagata