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In the springtime, cherry blossoms burst into vibrant colors in Japan. The blooming trees and their pink flowers are so pretty that some travelers visit Japan in the spring just to see them.
Cherry Blossoms in Japan
Although international travelers can’t visit right now, you can still plan a future trip during the cherry blossom season in Japan.
Here’s our list of some of the top places in Japan that are famous for cherry-blossom viewing. As the cherry blossom front goes from the south to the north of the country, this article will also introduce the sights in the same way.
Kumamoto Castle in Kumamoto
The castle, well known as an impregnable fort, was the stage of a civil war in 1877. It fatefully influenced the political framework and divided the country in two. You can admire lots of cherry blossoms around the iconic castle built in the early modern period.
Kintaikyo Bridge in Yamaguchi
The 193.3 meters high (634 feet) bridge with five arches was built in 1673 and is one of the three most beautiful bridges in Japan. Travelers always flock to the bridge, but early April is the best time to visit because countless flowering cherry trees are around.
Himeji Castle in Hyogo
This world heritage castle is also known as a cherry tree viewing spot. A row of cherry trees in Sannomaru Square and weeping cherry trees in the garden with a primitive forest of Himeji Castle Nishinomaru are must-see spots.
Arashiyama in Kyoto
Arashiyama, which means Storm Mountain, is also famous for its cherry trees. Stand on Togetsu-Kyo Bridge nearby and devote attention to the April mountain. You can enjoy the beautiful cherry trees among evergreen trees growing on the mountain slopes.
Skip the crowds and enjoy the lush bamboo forest and temples of Arashiyama on the top-rated Customized Rickshaw Tour & Bamboo Forest. Have a personalized experience with an expert local guide and free admittance to any temple on the tour. Book your dates here.
Mount Yoshino in Nara
The most iconic cherry tree viewing spot for Japanese people may be Mount Yoshino. Since the early times of Japan’s history, many poets have tried poetry compositions to depict the paramount beauty.
Kenrokuen Garden in Ishikawa
Kenrokuen in the central part of Kanazawa City is one of the three most famous gardens in Japan. You can admire the blossoms in the existing scenery of the early modern period.
Start the day in Kanazawa exploring Kenrokuen garden, Kanazawa Castle and the Samurai District on the Full-Day Private Guided Tour. Then, continue taking in the city on the Guided Night Tour and see the Geisha District after dark before a full-course Japanese meal with your private group or fellow tour-goers. Book the day trip here and the night experience here.
Shinjuku Gyoen National Garden in Tokyo
International travelers flock to the park every spring to enjoy cherry blossom picnics. You can easily access the vast park from Shinjuku Station. The successive prime ministers of Japan also come to see flowers here.
Chidorigafuchi Park in Tokyo
Huge moats and high stone walls surround the Imperial Palace in Chidorigafuchi Park in the central part of Tokyo. You also can see many cherry trees in this iconic park.
Make the most of your trip to Chidorigafuchi Park and find more top-rated tours around Tokyo here.
Kakunodate in Akita
Kakunodate is an old and historic town in Akita, Tohoku. Along with cherry blossoms, you will find old-world flavor with historic samurai residences along streets.
Goryōkaku in Hokkaido
Goryokaku means a five-point fort, and it formed the final set of the 1864 civil war mentioned above. You can enjoy a panoramic view with cherry blossoms from the observation deck of Goryokaku Tower.
If You Go
Spring is the best time to visit if you want to admire cherry blossoms in Japan. As mentioned before, the cherry blossom front goes from the south to the north of Japan. The middle of March comes into the blooming season in the southern part of Japan, and mid-April in the northern region.
In Osaka and Tokyo, the beginning of April is usually the time of bloom. It’s best to check the flowering information of your destination before visiting and plan your itinerary.
Check out our Japan Travel Guide.
Book This Trip
Start planning for this magical experience in Japan today! Be prepared with the best connecting flight deals and ground transportation bundles with Kiwi. Then you can find hotel or VRBO options, local foodie favorites, tips for getting around and more on Travelocity and TripAdvisor.
Be sure to book a couple of activities through GetYourGuide. From the 1-Day Snow Monkey & Cherry Blossom Tour in Nagano to the Eat Like a Local Street Food Tour in Osaka, there are activities everyone will enjoy. Book your dates during the popular cherry blossom season in advance here. Cancel anytime up to 24-hours before the event for a full refund!
Author Bio: Masayoshi Sakamoto（坂本正敬）is a Japanese writer and translator based in Toyama, Japan. He writes news and columns for a number of publications and web magazines. He’s also the editor-in-chief of a local magazine, HOKUROKU.