A dramatic fog is drifting through the garden of Hotel Chinzanso this month, transforming the Japanese landscape into a mysterious vista. The phenomenon isn’t a regular occurrence at the hotel, which is situated in the heart of Tokyo, but part of a special event for its guests to experience unkai in the city.
Unkai refers to the early morning fog or low-rise clouds that, when viewed from above, resemble a ‘sea of clouds’. These clouds can be found year-round if you’re at a high enough altitude, but reach peak visibility in autumn and winter.
If you were climbing mountains just to see unkai, you’d have to be up at the crack of dawn to catch them in time. The artificial clouds at Hotel Chinzanso, however, are released throughout the day from morning to late night, so you can sleep in and still enjoy the