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Japan's Cherry Blossoms in 2021 - Forecast and Best Spots

Japan's Cherry Blossoms in 2021 - Forecast and Best Spots

Translated by Lester Somera

Written by MATCHA

2021.01.13 Bookmark

Cherry blossom season usually starts in late March in Tokyo. However, the cherry blossoms bloom at different times depending on the region in Japan. Here is the cherry blossom forecast for 2021, based on the latest regional blossom forecasts!

Regional Cherry Blossom Forecast for 2021!

Japan's Cherry Blossoms in 2021 - Forecast and Best Spots

Cherry blossom forecat data according to Weathernews

Cherry blossoms or sakura are the symbols of springtime in Japan. Every year around February, you’ll start to see TV programs and web magazines giving out information about when the cherry blossoms will be in bloom.

Generally, the cherry blossom trees will bloom in order geographically in Japan: they first appear in the warm climate of southern Japan and make their way to the Kanto region, which includes Tokyo, then up to Tohoku in the north, and finally to Hokkaido. Since cherry blossoms typically only stay on the trees for around ten days, or two weeks at most, everyone in Japan checks the cherry blossom forecast in springtime. That way, they can enjoy the cherry blossom season at its peak.

According to the latest forecasts, in 2021, the cherry blossoms will bloom three days earlier than usual, starting from Tokyo, where the blooms can be enjoyed around March 18.

We’ve compiled a list of the forecasts for 2021, and peak dates of 2020, and 2019 by region in Japan. Take a look at this beforehand if you plan to spend some time amidst the cherry blossoms this spring.

*Please note that in 2021, many cherry blossom festivals may be canceled in order to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 outbreaks. If you are interested in a particular event, please make sure to check their official website for the latest information.

Okinawa: The Earliest Cherry Blossoms Bloom Here in January

Photo courtesy of © OCVB

Okinawa’s cherry blossom season is the earliest in Japan, starting in mid-January, so there are cherry blossom festivals and the like in early February to celebrate the flowers. If you plan to check out the flowers on a trip to Okinawa, check the cherry blossom forecast ahead of time.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 1/10 2/12
2020 1/6 2/3
2021 1/10 1/30

Areas with Cherry Blossoms Starting from Late March

Kagoshima (Kyushu)

Sakurajima in Bloom. Photo courtesy of: Public Interest Incorporated Association, The Kagoshima Prefectural Sightseeing Union
Normally, cherry blossoms bloom earlier than in Tokyo with Kyushu's warm climate. Kagoshima in southern Kyushu, for example, usually welcomes sakura blooming around March. However, when the blossoms come varies by year.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 3/25 4/9
2020 3/30 4/7
2021 3/23 3/27

Fukuoka (Kyushu)

Fukuoka Maizuru Park Photo courtesy of: the City of Fukuoka
In temperate Kyushu, there are slight differences between regions, but Fukuoka’s cherry blossom season is also earlier than that of eastern Japan.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 3/22 4/3
2020 3/20 3/30
2021 3/20 3/26

Hiroshima

In the Chugoku region, which includes Hiroshima, the cherry blossom season will start slightly later than in Tokyo.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 3/28 4/3
2020 3/20 3/30
2021 3/23 3/28

Kyoto

Night Cherry Blossoms in Kyoto’s Famous Maruyama Park. Photo courtesy of: JAPAN LIBRARY© Y.Shimizu/© JNTO
The ancient city of Kyoto bustles with tourist activity during cherry blossom season. The sight of ancient buildings, set against a backdrop of cherry blossom trees, is a landscape that can only be witnessed in Japan.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 3/22 3/27
2020 3/21 3/29
2021 3/24 3/28

Osaka

Osaka’s Okawa Cherry Blossoms. Photo courtesy of ©Osaka Convention & Tourism Bureau
The cherry blossom season in Osaka begins around the same time as Kyoto.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 3/27 4/4
2020 3/20 3/28
2021 3/24 3/28

Nagoya

Nagoya City’s Agriculture Center Cherry Blossoms Photo courtesy of: JAPAN PHOTO LIBRARY ©Nagoya Convention & Visitors Bureau/©JNTO
Often, the timing for the chery blossom season in Nagoya is about the same as in Osaka and Kyoto.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 3/22 4/4
2020 3/19 3/29
2021 3/21 3/25

Tokyo

Tokyo Meguro River Arched Bridge. Photo courtesy of Meguro Tourism Association
Tokyo’s cherry blossom season starts in late March. It is common to enjoy the flowers at a place near a train station, and areas like parks, river banks, and gardens will be crowded with people on the weekends.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 3/21 3/27
2020 3/13 3/23
2021 3/18 3/23

Sendai - Cherry Blossoms Start from Early April

Miyagi’s Matsushima Bay and Cherry Blossoms Photo courtesy of Miyagi Tourism Department
The cherry blossoms in the northern Japan and Sendai, tend to bloom later compared to places like Tokyo. You can check them out along with the rich natural scenery. In the spring, koi-nobori, or carp banners, can be seen flying alongside the cherry blossoms in the parts of Tohoku outside of Sendai.

You can check the cherry blossom forecasts for other cities at this site (Japanese). Note that it’s still going to be pretty cold in the evening, even with the wonderful scenery, so dress warmly when you go to see the flowers.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 4/5 4/10
2020 3/27 4/5
2021 4/1 4/5

Hokkaido (Sapporo) - Cherry Blossoms Start from late April

Cherry Blossom Tunnel at Hokkaido’s Matsumae Park. Photo courtesy of: Matsumae Tourism Association
Hokkaido is the northernmost region of Japan and has the latest cherry blossom season. From the end of April, you can enjoy the refreshing sight of rows of cherry blossom trees, stretching across vast grassy fields for what seems like an eternity.

Year First Day of Blossoms Full Bloom
2019 4/24 4/29
2020 4/24 4/30
2021 4/23 4/27

Enjoy the Cherry Blossom Season in Japan!

If you travel to Japan in spring, do travel to the beautiful cherry blossom spots and enjoy the local festivals! It's one of the charms of the season that will leave a lasting memory.

Please note that in 2021, many cherry blossom festivals may be canceled in order to prevent the further spread of COVID-19 outbreaks. If you are interested in a particular event, please make sure to check their official website for the latest information.

Nevertheless, do take a minute to enjoy the cherry blossoms quietly when they bloom in your region.

Information is up to date as of January 13, 2021. Please refer to https://weathernews.jp/s/sakura/Cherry Blossom Forecasts (Japanese) for more information.

Main image by Pixta

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