Cherry blossom season is the favorite of many people in Japan whether they are locals or tourists. Winter fades away and thousands of trees across the country bloom with gorgeous pink flowers. Some say that this is the time of year when the gods descend to earth, making these delicate flowers bloom for just a few short weeks until they’re gone. Cherry blossoms, locally called “sakura,” inspire events, picnics where people go to eat, drink, and see the flowers (called “hanami”), and limited edition themed goods, including food and drink.
Japan is the country of festivals and celebrations, so of course, you can expect to find festivals celebrating the coming of cherry blossom season! If you are planning on spending this special time in Tokyo, be sure to check out these two special events. Japan’s capital city has its own share of breathtaking sakura views, and you wouldn’t want to miss them this 2018!
Sumida Park is located along the Sumida River and between the Sakurabashi and Azumabashi bridges. The people of Tokyo (formerly known as Edo) have been flocking to Sumida Park for decades to see the cherry blossom trees, of which there are now 640, and have a hanami party. In very recent years, you have the added bonus of a great view of Tokyo Skytree from the park!
The actual festival dates will depend on when the cherry blossoms bloom this 2018, but it is expected to be somewhere between mid-March and mid-April.
You can also combine a picnic under the trees with a boat ride along the river, which makes for an excellent day out. If you stay until the evening, you will also see Tokyo Skytree light up – a truly beautiful sight.
Ueno Park is incredibly popular; it has a great balance of space, historic sites, and modern innovation. It also has a zoo and a Starbucks on site, making it great for a day out any time of year.
From mid-March until early April, Ueno Park boasts no fewer than 800 cherry blossom trees, where you can go to reflect on life, take fantastic photographs, or engage in a traditional hanami party. Pair this with a visit to see the baby panda in Ueno Zoo and you’ve got yourself an amazing day out.
Ueno Park is considered one of the top places in Tokyo to see the cherry blossoms. Be sure to get there early and go on a weekday if you can, as the park’s popularity means it can get very crowded. Check what kind of sakura-themed goodies are on offer at Starbucks as well!
Cherry blossom season is very special to the Japanese and is an incredible sight for visitors as well. If you are lucky enough to visit Japan during this enchanting season, be sure to visit one of these parks and find out why they are so well loved during this time of year. Don’t forget your picnic sheet and beer!