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The Ultimate Guide to Japanese Cherry Blossoms


The best cherry blossoms in Japan can be seen at: 1. Tokyo This capital city gives you the best that Japan has to offer in one place. From Shibuya Crossing, the world’s busiest intersection, to the famous fish markets and youth culture and fashion hub of Harajuku, you’ll be instantly immersed in the local culture. Head to Shinjuku Gyoen, one of the most popular places to celebrate hanami in the city. With a super central location and beautiful sprawling lawns, it’s the perfect place for a picnic. You can see over a thousand sakura flowers and different types of early and late cherry blossoms, perfect for people who miss peak season. If you have a little extra time, stop by Ueno Park to see the streets lined with more than a thousand sakura blossom trees. Or head to Kitanomaru Park near Chidorigafuchi Moat for the Chiyoda Sakura Festival and rent a boat to see the glowing sakura blossoms at night. 2. Kyoto Maruyama Garden is the most famous hanami site in Kyoto. In the middle of the garden, there is a weeping cherry tree lit at night. You can also hike the Philosopher’s Trail in the northern part of Kyoto’s Higashiyama District. With over two kilometers lined with hundreds of cherry blossom trees, this stone path follows a canal, passing some of the best restaurants, shops, and cafes that Kyoto has to offer. Take a short bus ride to the western outskirts of the city and you’ll find plenty of sakura trees in Arashiyama, surrounding the Togetsukyo Bridge and riverbank. While in Arashiayama, don’t forget to stop by the bamboo forest to complete your Kyoto set menu. 3. Osaka Known as the second largest metropolitan city in Japan, Osaka is home to many attractions, some of the best food, and of course, cherry blossom sites. The river park along Keima Sakuranomiya Park is home to more than 5,000 cherry trees that stretch for several kilometers. While Expo 70 Commemorative Park has some of the city’s largest areas of lawn and trees that light up at night. One of the most memorable places to celebrate hanami in Osaka is near Osaka Castle. With a moat and garden surrounding the historic landmark, you’ll find cherry trees throughout the park, with the castle tower lit up at night. It is just amazing.

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