Sakura Season and Best Hanami Spots in Japan

Cherry Blossoms or more popularly known as Sakura is also considered as a national flower of Japan. For the Japanese, Sakura symbolizes the clouds because of the way they are blooming. It is also associated with mortality – on readily and gracefully accepting destiny and karma. Being symbolic, Cherry Blossom is often represented in Japan’s arts, music, films, manga and even on consumer goods.


Best Places to Experience Hanami

Sakura blooms in springtime, mostly from late March to early May so if tourists want to see its most majestic views, they must take note of the dates and the best places for the hanami or flower viewing.

Fujigoko (Fuji Five Lakes) – At the northern base of Mount Fuji, the highest and most beautiful mountain in Japan, lies five distinct lakes. This area is the best spot to see the scenic view of the mountain and the Sakura. The flowers start to bloom in early April and blooms fully in mid April.

Photo credit: Guilhem Vellut (Flickr)
Photo credit: Guilhem Vellut (Flickr)

Tokyo – Tokyo is the best place to see Japan’s most exciting time of the year, as the Sakura spreads tranquility all over the city on springtime. The city boasts with parks, gardens, rivers, riversides and other famous landmarks perfect for hanami. In Tokyo, first bloom is expected on March 23 and peaks on April 2.


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Osaka – In Osaka, visitors can enjoy walking under the Cherry Blossoms whether on daytime or at night. They can also participate in various Cherry Blossom festivals held in different locations across the city. Some notable hanami spots in Osaka is home to 5000 cherry blossom trees. Expect the Sakura to bloom from March 23 to March 28, this year.


Kyoto – During springtime, Sakura gives Kyoto a mind-blowing atmosphere. Local and foreign visitors bustle the city’s canals, rivers, parks, temples, shrines and other hanami spots offering picturesque landscapes. Sakura is on full bloom here by March 28 to early April.


Hokkaido – Sakura blooms a bit late in Hokkaido, around early to mid May, but this might be the place for the most gorgeous cherry blossom season. Landmarks, parks and even roadsides offer breathtaking views of tons of cherry blossoms.