Kumagaya in Japan’s Saitama prefecture is known for getting really hot around midsummer, while it’s relatively pleasant the rest of the time. Located on the Nakasendo Inland Way from olden-days Kyoto to Tokyo, it also has a longstanding and ongoing tradition of offering various interesting methods to travelers looking to beat the heat. One of the most important, especially as it gets a little heated up in rugby season, is the shaved ice confection of yukikuma, whose ice is apparently made from the water of the city’s underground river. Today a northern outreach of Tokyo’s urban sprawl, Kumagaya is graced by the Arakawa and Tone Rivers, and a lovely little walkway over the dam. The Menuma Shodenzan Kangiin Temple here calls itself the ‘Nikko of Saitama’, so you might like to find out just what that’s about too!
Opened 1991 and expanded 2016
Access By bus out of JR Kumagaya Station’s North Exit:
down the stairs, past the Rugby Ball Monument, and left along the station roundabout to Bus Stop no.3
Unique Japan Rugby Tour participants enjoy chartered shuttles to and from your matches, as well as pre/post-match parties.
Russia v Samoa
24th September (Tues)
Argentina v USA
9th October (Wed)
Georgia v Uruguay
29th September (Sun)
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