Yonezawa Travel Guide

Yonezawa is located in the southernmost area of Yamagata Prefecture.

Yonezawa’s skyline was built after the Kamakura period (1185-1333) when historical figures groups such as Uesugi and Date ruled the castle town.  In particular, the influence of Uesugi who ruled the area for over 270 years was large.  Visitors who are interested in the history of Yonezawa should check out Uesugi-Jinja Shrine where Uesugi Kenshin and Uesugi Takayama are enshrined, as well as Yonezawa City Uesugi Museum.

Popular attractions in the area are skiing and hot springs.  Visitors can enjoy skiing from approximately mid-November to the beginning of May.  The snow quality is excellent in midwinter and skiers from beginners to advanced levels can enjoy the mountains.  After skiing, warm up by visiting the hot springs.  Yonezawa has a hot springs area with a history of over 700 years, and includes Onogawa Onsen Hot Spring and Shirabu Onsen Hot Spring.

While in the area, try a taste of the famous Yonezawa beef.  The use of Yonezawa beef spread through Japan during the Meiji period.  At the beginning of the Meiji period, a British English teacher visited Yonezawa and was moved by the deliciousness and brought the beef back to Yokohama to share with his friends.  The fine marbling of the beef and the excellent texture of the meat that melts in your mouth became highly popular and by the mid-Meiji period, wholesales in Yokohama began to handle Yonezawa beef and its popularity grew from there.  Now, in addition to steak and yakiniku grilled meat, Yonezawa beef is used in a wide variety of ways including beef rice bowls, shabu-shabu cooking, and sukiyaki cooking.

From Tokyo, the central Yonezawa Station is 2 hours and 10 minutes by Yamagata Shinkansen bullet train.  Within the Yonezawa area, it is necessary to take a bus or drive.

Tourism information: Yonezawa

Map: Yonezawa