Wednesday, 4th March 2015
In Events In Japan,
Tokyo gears itself for cherry blossom festivals
Regardless of what time of year you go, Tokyo never fails to surprise with its beauty and elegance, but nothing really comes close to the cherry blossom season. And local officials are preparing for a series of special events across the country that will mark this special occasion when the landscape becomes a technicolour explosion of pink hues.
Sakura Festival, Chiyoda
Taking place at the Imperial Palace, this festival will enable you to stroll around the picturesque landscape, while the Chidorigafuchi boating area will be open for the only time in the year until late, enabling you to view the illuminated cherry blossoms in the evening.
Ueno Sakura Matsuri
Ueno Park is undoubtedly one of the best places to see the blossom as it is lined endlessly with these cherry trees. At this time, 1,000 lanterns will illuminate the area at night, a protocol that was once used to increase security in the park at night. With over 600 Yoshino cherry trees to be enjoyed here, the park will also be hosting various special events and an antique market, ensuring there is something here to suit all tastes.
Sumida Park Festival
Running between the Azumabashi and Sakurabashi bridges, this idyllic spot along the Sumida river has always been a popular blossom viewing spot among locals - hardly a surprise when you consider that around 1,000 cherry trees grow in this park alone. Head onto a traditional Japanese houseboat, known locally as a yaka-bune, and enjoy breathtaking views from both sides of the river.
Probably the most spectacular of the lot, the shidare zakura 'weeping tree' here will be completely lit up, spanning 15 metres high and 20 metres wide. And with the park not closing until 9pm, you really can enjoy this spectacle in its glory against the spring night skydrop.
For more information about when the cherry blossom will occur in which areas of Japan, check out our latest fantastic interactive infographic here
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Prime Minister Abe shows support for Tokyo's Olympic bid (8th January 2013)