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Kyoto Cherry Blossoms: The Perfect Two-Day Itinerary

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History and nature come together in an ideal two-day cherry blossom tour for the Kyoto area! From leisurely boat rides to mountainside picnics, this itinerary is packed with springtime fun!

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Kyoto is regarded as a hub for Japan's traditional culture and artistry, with its beauty further enhanced by the cherry blossoms that can be enjoyed in late March - early April.

This two-day spring itinerary in Kyoto offers a blueprint for experiencing some of the finest sights and activities that complement this ambiance.

Two Days of Cherry Blossoms in Kyoto

First Day: Choose from 3 Excellent Tours
1. Kyoto Fushimi Cherry Blossom Boat Ride & Kaiseki Lunch
2. Kyoto Fushimi Cherry Blossom Boat Ride
3. Kamo River, Kyoto Botanical Gardens, Randen Cherry Blossom Day Tour
Evening: Cherry Blossom Light-up
NAKED FLOWERS - Sakura - World Heritage Nijo Castle
Second Day
Mount Yoshino Cherry Blossom Bus Tour

First Day

On day one of this itinerary, visitors can select from one of three incredible tour options. All of these tours are centered around the traditional core of Kyoto, providing a blend of historical and botanical marvels for guests to enjoy. Each tour boasts unique charms and attractions, detailed below.

1. Kyoto Fushimi Cherry Blossom Boat Ride & Kaiseki Lunch Day Tour (from Osaka)

Two Day Trips - A spectacular Spring Time Itinerary For the Kyoto Area

The Fushimi area of Kyoto is celebrated for its traditional architecture and stunning views. A unique experience to indulge in is riding a traditional raft along the historical waterways in this district.

These charming covered river rafts leisurely navigate the water channels that are bordered by cherry blossom trees during springtime. As if sprinkled by a vivid pink confetti, the petals delicately adorn the water's surface, casting a whimsical and fairy-like aura over the surroundings.

Following this serene excursion, a traditional kaiseki lunch awaits you as part of the package. This elaborate meal, comprising a variety of small dishes, embodies the essence of Japan's seasons and showcases the finest produce fresh from Kyoto.

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2. Kyoto Fushimi Cherry Blossom Boat Ride Day Tour

Two Day Trips - A spectacular Spring Time Itinerary For the Kyoto Area

Embarking on a leisurely stroll through the hidden treasures of cherry blossom viewing spots in and around Kyoto offers a serene and enjoyable way to spend the first day in this city.

This itinerary covers four picturesque locations in the central Kyoto area, showcasing the tranquil and revitalizing experience of witnessing the delicate spring blossoms.

Key highlights of the tour include a stop at Shirakawa, near the historic Gion district, where traditional architecture harmonizes with the pink blossoms, creating a scenic tapestry of beauty.

Next, you will visit Daigoji, a revered temple renowned for cherry blossom viewings in Kyoto. History holds that Toyotomi Hideyoshi, Japan's first unifying ruler, held private cherry blossom viewings on the temple grounds, adding a touch of historical significance to this serene setting.

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3. Kamo River, Kyoto Botanical Gardens, Randen Cherry Blossom Day Tour

Two Day Trips - A spectacular Spring Time Itinerary For the Kyoto Area

Meandering through the core of Kyoto, the Kamo River is considered the lifeblood of the city, drawing residents to its banks for generations.

Over the years, successive generations have planted sakura trees along its edges, transforming it into a timeless spot for cherry blossom viewing. This tour commences with a leisurely stroll along the river banks, reminiscent of the experiences enjoyed by many in centuries past.

Subsequently, visitors are guided to the Kyoto Botanical Gardens, renowned for its splendid cherry blossoms. Along one of the pathways, guests are treated to a breathtaking spectacle as weeping cherry blossoms cascade from wooden trellises that adorn the way.

To culminate the adventure, participants embark on a ride aboard the Randen tram in Arashiyama, traversing through a mesmerizing tunnel of sakura trees, concluding a magical botanical journey through the heart of Kyoto's natural scenery.

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Evening: NAKED FLOWERS - Sakura - World Heritage Nijo Castle

Two Day Trips - A spectacular Spring Time Itinerary For the Kyoto Area

Distinguished for seamlessly intertwining nature, tradition, and digital art, the digital art unit NAKED, Inc. has crafted numerous stunning temporary installations.

This itinerary ensures a visit to one of these exhibits running from early March to early April, transforming the environs surrounding the renowned Nijo Castle in Kyoto into a springtime wonderland.

Tailored package options allow you to personalize the luxuriousness or budget-friendliness of your event experience. You can also opt for admission to Kyoto Tower or choose a package that includes a custom lantern keepsake to enrich your immersion in the installations.

Irrespective of your selection, the spring-themed projections, interactive features, and delectable culinary offerings of this event promise an enchanting evening!

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Second Day: Mount Yoshino Cherry Blossom Bus Tour

Two Day Trips - A spectacular Spring Time Itinerary For the Kyoto Area

This second day tour sees you head to one of the most beautiful mountainsides to see cherry blossoms, Mount Yoshino in Nara Prefecture.

Around the Kyoto - Osaka area Mt. Yoshino is a space that is unrivaled for seeing cherry blossoms in nature and also around traditional structures. During the blooming peak, the mountainside is covered in hues of snow white, soft pink, and vibrant fuchsia.

There are numerous park grounds where visitors can enjoy the traditional pastime of cherry blossom viewing and sample some snacks while they admire the season.

Mt. Yoshino also boasts a number of sakura-related snacks and beverages that people can buy while they soak up the clear spring skies and take in the sights.

This is a spot that people in the Osaka area love so much that you will often see the trains crammed with visitors on all train services heading there. So being able to do away with the inconvenience and take a bus tour up there is totally worth it!

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Enjoy the Cherry Blossoms in Kyoto!

Why not consider following this itinerary when you next visit the Osaka region during the cherry blossom season?

Offering a highly customizable first day along with various evening options, this model trip guarantees visits to numerous picturesque locations, allowing you to relish the enchanting beauty of this magical season to the fullest.

All pictures courtesy of Klook

Written by

Travel writer and assistant editor at MATCHA with extensive travel around the Osaka, Kyoto, and Wakayama areas. A Kansai insider who knows their Akashiyaki from their Takoyaki, Iain enjoys getting authentic stories from traditional craftspeople and interesting creators. Particularly fond of temples and shrines, Iain delves deep into the crossroads of tradition and modernity in his eight-plus years living and writing about Japan.

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