Translated by Sandy Lau
10 Famed Cherry Blossoms Spots: Enjoy Spring To The Fullest In Japan
Written by MATCHA
Beautiful cherry blossoms bloom everywhere throughout Japan and have differing types and views depending on its environment. We will introduce 10 places famous for their flowers, from nature, boisterous viewing spots, temples, castles, and more.
Cherry blossoms bloom everywhere throughout Japan. Although cherry blossoms are beautiful no matter where they’re seen, it is also true that there are huge differences in the views available depending on their surrounding environments. There are cherry blossoms in nature, flower viewing spots where you can have lively parties, temples and castles where cherry blossoms bloom, and more. In this article, we will introduce ten places that are famous for their cherry blossoms throughout the entire country.
1. Tokyo: Sumida Park
Photo courtesy of: JAPAN PHOTO LIBRARY©Yasufumi Nishi/©JNTO
Sumida River comes to mind when you think of a flower viewing spot in Asakusa Station that is also a popular tourist attraction in the city. Sumida Park is especially flooded with people during the cherry blossom season. Approximately 640 cherry trees are in bloom around the park each year. The Sumida Park Cherry Blossom Festival is held from the end of March to the middle of April. During this period, the cherry blossoms are illuminated from sunset to 21:00. The fact that you can enjoy both Tokyo Skytree and a cherry blossom illumination at the same time is just one of its charms.
Address: Tokyo, Sumida / Taito
Nearest Station: Tokyo Metro Ginza Line, Tobu Skytree Line, Toei Subway at Asakusa Station
Access: 5 minute walk from Asakusa Station
Phone: 03-5608-6951 (Sumida Tourism Association)
Website: Sumida Tourism Website
2. Tokyo: Meguro River
Photo courtesy of: Meguro Tourism and Community Development Association
Meguro River is approximately eight kilometers long and passes through Setagaya, Meguro, and Shinagawa. Approximately 800 cherry trees extending a distance of roughly four kilometers from Ikejiri Ohashi to Shinagawa bloom along the river once it’s spring, which makes this a famous cherry blossom location bustling with many people. The fact that this is a spot where you can fully enjoy a meal, shopping, and coffee is also quite charming. Illuminations are also conducted along this river, so be sure to enjoy the evening cherry blossoms after walking through town.
Address: Tokyo, Meguro / Setagaya / Shinagawa
Nearest Station: Den-en-toshi Line at Ikejiri-Ohashi Station, Tokyu Toyoko Line Tokyo Metro at Naka-Meguro Station, JR Tokyu Meguro Line at Meguro Station, Tokyu Meguro Line at Fudo-mae Station
Access: [Upstream] 3 minute walk from Ikejiri-Ohashi Station
[Midstream] 1 minute walk from Naka-Meguro Station
[Downstream] 6 minute walk from Meguro Station. 5 minute walk from Fudo-mae Station
Phone: 03-5722-6850 (Meguro Tourism and Community Development Association)
Website: Meguro Tourism and Community Development Association (Japanese)
3. Nara: Nara Park
Photo courtesy of: General Incorporated Foundation Nara Visitors Bureau ©
Nara Park is the symbol of sightseeing spots in Nara. Aside from having Todai-ji Temple, Kofuku-ji Temple, Kasugataisha Shrine, the National Museum, and Shosoin located inside the park, it also has verdant trees and frolicking animals such as wild deer and squirrels. This is an exceptional park even in Japan.
You can fully experience the arrival of spring thanks to the cherry blossoms that can be viewed from its spacious lawns. Being able to see cute animals amid the cherry blossoms is also a plus.
Address: Nara, Nara, Zoshicho Nara Park
Nearest Station: Kintetsu, JR Nara Station
Access: 5 minute walk from Kintetsu Nara Station, 20 minute walk from JR Nara Station
Website: Nara Park
4. Kyoto: Daigo-ji Temple
Photo courtesy of: JAPAN PHOTO LIBRARY© Q.Sawami/© JNTO
Daigo-ji Temple is a World Heritage Site that is also a flower viewing spot in Kyoto. Known for its five-storied pagoda, Daigo-ji is a temple that has played a big role in passing down Japanese culture to future generations. Cherry blossom flowers bloom all throughout the extensive grounds of Daigo-ji Temple. Here you can enjoy both valuable Japanese structures and a view of the cherry blossoms together.
Address: Fushimi, Daigohigashiojicho 22
Hours: [March – the first Sunday of December] 9:00 – 17:00
[Day following the first Sunday of December – the end of February] 9:00 – 17:00 (final entry is 30 minutes before closing)
* Upper Daigo only: 9:00 -16:00 (March 1st – first Sunday of December), 9:00 – 15:00 (day following the first Sunday of December – the end of February)
Nearest Station: Municipal Subway at Daigo Station
Access: 10 minute walk from Daigo Station
Price: Adults 600 yen, junior/high school students 300 yen, free for elementary school age and younger
Website: Daigo-ji Temple
5. Osaka: Rows of Cherry Trees Lining Okawa River
Photo courtesy of: ©Osaka Convention & Tourism Bureau
Okawa River runs along the border of Miyakojima and Kita in Osaka. Kema Sakuranomiya Park, located on the Miyakojima side of the river, and Japan Mint, located on the Kita Tenma Bridge side, are two places famous for their cherry blossoms that are also well known in Osaka.
Approximately 4800 cherry trees bloom in the area between Tenma Bridge and Sakuranomiya Bridge. This area is bustling with many cherry blossom viewers late into the night, and there is a cherry blossom cruise along the Okawa River as well.
Kema Sakuraomiya Park
Address: Osaka, Osaka, Kita, Tenma Bridge 1
Nearest Station: JR Osaka Loop Line at Sakuranomiya Station
Access: Immediately outside Sakuranomiya Station
Phone: Ogimachi Parks Office (06-6312-8121)
Website: Osaka Flower and Greenery Information Website (Japanese)
6. Hiroshima: Senkoji Park
Photo courtesy of: General Incorporated Association Onomichi Tourism Association
Senkoji Park is a location famous for its cherry blossom in the popular sightseeing area of Onomichi, Hiroshima. This park stretches out from the summit of Mt. Senkoji and is a picturesque spot where you can overlook the cherry blossoms on the mountains together with the view of the Seto Inland Seas in the spring. You can also enjoy the elegant scenery from the ropeway that travels from the station to the summit.
Address: Hiroshima, Onomichi, Higashitsuchidocho 15-1
Nearest Station: JR Sanyo Shinkansen at Shin-Onomichi Station, JR Sanyo Main Line at Onomichi Station
Access: 30 minute walk from Onomichi Station or exit at the Nagae Entrance on the City Bus. 5 minutes from the Senkoji Ropeway Sancho Station. 10 minutes by taxi from Shin-Onomichi Station to the Senkoji Park parking lot.
Website: Senkoji Temple (Japanese)
7. Kagawa: Ritsurin Garden
Photo courtesy of: Kagawa Ritsurin Garden Tourism Office
Special Scenic Beauty Ritsurin Garden, a Japanese garden located in Kagawa, was constructed in the Edo period. The southern part of the garden retains the same ambience it did over 300 years ago. In 2009, it was rated three stars in the Michelin Green Guide Japan, a Japan travel guide, meaning that “it is worth putting on the agenda and traveling to this destination.” Approximately 290 cherry trees bloom in the garden each spring.
Address: Kagawa, Takamatsu, Ritsurincho 1-20-16
Hours: Roughly from sunrise to sunset
Nearest Station: JR Kotoku Line at Ritsurin Park North Entrance Station, JR Kotoku Line at Ritsurin Station
Access: 3 minute walk from Ritsurin Park North Entrance Station, 20 minute walk from Ritsurin Station
Price: Adults 410 yen, elementary and junior high school students: 170 yen
8. Kumamoto: Kumamoto Castle
Photo courtesy of: Kumamoto Castle General Office
Kumamoto Castle, the symbol of Kumamoto, surrounded by magnificent natural landscape that includes Mount Aso, is a castle that was constructed approximately 400 years ago. It was often an important historical stage after its reconstruction to modern times. Although Kumamoto Castle just by itself is impressive, magnificently towering over its vast grounds, cherry blossoms are in full bloom on the premises in the spring. The castle is also illuminated at night. Unfortunately, following the April 2016 earthquake, Kumamoto Castle is closed to the public until further notice.
Kumamoto Castle (currently closed to the public)
Address: Kumamoto, Chuo, Furukyomachi 1-1
Nearest Station: JR Kumamoto Station
Access: Approximately 10 minutes by the tram from Kumamoto Station. Board the bus at the tram stop in front of Kumamoto Station and exit at the stop in front of City Hall
Price: Adults 500 yen, Children (elementary/junior high school students) 200 yen
Website: Kumamoto Castle (Japanese)
9. Akita: Kakunodate
Photo courtesy of: Kakunodate Tourist Association
Kakunodate, surrounded by the mountains of Akita, is a beautiful and elegant sightseeing spot with samurai residences and rows of cherry trees. The former residences of samurai have become a protected Cultural Property of Japan district, meaning that they have been kept in their traditional form. Kakunodate’s shidare-zakura (weeping cherry blossoms), a specialty of the town, are over 300 years in age and have also been designated a natural monument of Japan.
Address: Akita, Semboku, Kakunodatemachi Omotemachikamicho – Higashikatsurakucho Samurai Residences Road
Hours: Illuminations from April 20th – May 5th (sunset – 22:00)
Nearest Station: JR Tazawako Station and Akita Shinkansen at Kakunodate Station
Access: 20 minute walk from Kakunodate Station
Phone: 0187-54-2700 (Kakunodate Tourism Association)
Website: Kakunodate Tourism Association (Japanese), Semboku City
10. Hakodate: Goryokaku Tower
Photo courtesy of: Hakodate
Goryokaku Tower, located in Hakodate, is a famous observation deck in Hokkaido. It is also known for its cherry blossoms and approximately 1600 cherry trees bloom in the park in the spring. You can view the scenery dyed in the pink colors of the flowers from the observation deck.
Address: Hokkaido, Hakodate, Goryokakucho 43-9 Goryokaku Tower Corporation
Hours: April 21st – October 20th 8:00-19:00, October 21st – April 20th 9:00-18:00, During the period of Goryo Dream of Stars (Winter) 9:00-19:00, January 1st (first sunrise of the year) 6:00-19:00
Nearest Station: JR Goryokaku Station, tram in front of Goryokaku Park
Access: Board the Hakodate Bus from Goryokaku Station, exit at the Goryokaku Park Entrance, and walk for 7 minutes / 15 minute walk from Goryokaku Park Front
Price: Adults 840 yen, junior/high school students 630 yen, elementary school students 420 yen, free for those under elementary school age
Website: Goryokaku Tower
Planning a trip to Japan in the spring for their beautiful cherry blossoms? Then please feel free to use this article as reference for your trip!