The snowiest city in the world is in Japan. And we’re not sure why, but we really didn’t see that coming. We would have guessed someplace in Siberia or Canada. But the award for the snowiest city goes to northern Japan’s Aomori City.
More about the snowiest city in the world
Aomori City averages 312 inches (that’s about 26 feet) of snow each year! And it has a population of over 280,000 people. That’s A LOT of shoveling that needs to happen to keep a city moving.
On an island nation, you might wonder where they put all that snow. The answer is right into the bay.
If you’re interested, here’s a quite long video showing how it all goes down:
Now, there are likely snowier places on Earth, but people don’t live there. Aomori City is the snowiest place where people actually live.
Why is Aomori City so snowy?
According to CNN (cited below), “The extreme snowfall is caused by chilly Siberian winds that sweep into Japan from the northwest every November. As the cold air crosses over the warmer waters off Japan’s mountainous coastline, it gathers moisture, then rises and turns into snow.”
You may have heard of “lake effect snow,” but what Japan gets is “sea effect snow.” Since the sea doesn’t really freeze, they get thick, powdery snow until all the way up until April. And the city’s suburbs get blanketed as well.
Like so many snowy cities, residents aren’t thrilled about the snow, but they’re prepared for it. And the city makes the most of it. Things don’t close down easily, and the city takes advantage of tourism dollars from skiers and other snow-lovers. They also have amazing seafood, which is especially plentiful during the snowy months. — WTF fun facts