Cherry Blossom Season in Japan

From late March to mid April the Cherry Blossom in Japan is a sight to behold. Visitors flock from all over the world to marvel in this magnificent natural event.

Known as ‘Hanami’ (flower viewing), there are various things you can do to ensure you enjoy the experience to the full:

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Valentine’s Day in Japan

Japanese Valentine’s Day is not like the others. Valentine’s Day is the day for Japanese women to get creative and present gifts to men. Back in the 1950s, the act of women confessing their feelings was considered radical and taboo (and sometimes still is). Valentine’s Day was established so that it was acceptable for women to take a risk and confess their feelings in Japan. There is a strong tradition of women giving chocolates to men on Valentine’s Day, which sees Japanese women preparing the Honmei-choco by themselves as many of them think it is not true love if they just buy readymade chocolate in shops. However, women do not only give chocolate to their lovers, they also give chocolate to their male colleagues, bosses, close male friends and even their father and brothers. This is called Giri choco with no romance involved. It is a practice that’s intended to show appreciation to co-workers, and is given just for friendship or gratitude. Men will then return the favour a month later on White Day (14th March).

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The MUST GO Lavender Farms in Hokkaido

You may have wandered around some of the beautiful lavender farms in England and France, absorbing the fragrant aroma’s, but did you know that there are lavender farms in Hokkaido, Japan, that you really should visit on any summer journey to this fascinating country.  The best time to go is in July,  when the lavender in Furano is in full bloom. Stroll around the picturesque fields, with your camera at the ready for some great photo opportunities. The lavender ice creams sold at Farm Tomita, are a must for anyone with a sweet tooth, especially on a hot summers day, they are cool and delicious. While you are there, why not treat yourself to a Yubari King melon flavoured soft ice cream, a famous top grade melon in Japan which was sold at auction for 3 million yen (about £21,500) for a pair earlier this year!

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Rugby World Cup 2019 in Japan

Rugby World Cup 2019 in Japan is going to be held from 20th September to 2nd November!
20 nations will gather in Japan for the rugby’s world most important event that holds once every four years! Japan is the first Asian country to host such grand tournament in Rugby. We are very excited and cannot wait for all these big sporting events that are happening in Asia… 2017 Japan Formula 1 Grand Prix, 2018 Pyeongchang Winter Olympic, 2019 Rugby World Cup Japan, 2020 Tokyo Olympic and 2022 Beijing Winter Olympic etc…

The venues of the Rugby have all been announced and are as follows:

  • Sapporo Dome, Sapporo City
  • Kamaishi Recovery Memorial Stadium, Iwate Prefecture/Kamaishi City
  • Kumagaya Rugby Ground, Saitama Prefecture/Kumagaya City
  • New National Stadium Japan, Tokyo
  • International Stadium Yokohama, Kanagawa Prefecture/Yokohama City
  • Ogasayama Sports Park Ecopa Stadium, Shizuoka Prefecture
  • Toyota Stadium, Aichi Prefecture/Toyota City
  • Hanazono Rugby Stadium, Osaka Prefecture/Higashi Osaka City
  • Kobe City Misaki Park Stadium, Kobe City
  • Hakatanomori Football Stadium, Fukuoka City
  • Kumamoto Prefectural Athletic Stadium, Kumamoto Prefecture/Kumamoto City
  • Oita Stadium, Oita Prefecture

The pool draw results are out today 10th May 2017 at Kyoto. 20 qualified teams have been divided into four pools of 5 teams to play against each other.

The Draw

Pool A Pool B Pool C Pool D
Band 1 Ireland New Zealand England Australia
Band 2 Scotland South Africa France Wales
Band 3 Japan Italy Argentina Georgia
Band 4 Europe 1 Africa 1 Americas 1 Oceania 1
Band 5 Play-off winner Repechage winner Oceania 2 Americas 2

 

Discover the UNESCO Historic Villages of Shirakawa-go and Gokayama

Immerse yourself into the folk lives of UNESCO Shirakawa-go and Gokayama villages

Best view from the Ogimachi Castle ruins view point

The historic villages of Shirakawa-go and Gokayama were registered as a UNESCO World Heritage site in 1995. The 114 farmhouses are famous for preserving the traditional Gassho-zukuri style houses with their iconic ‘A’ shaped thatched roofs, built without nails, some of which are more than 300 years old.

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Cherry Blossom Varieties You will see in Japan right now

Which cherry blossom varieties are blooming right now?

It is the middle of the cherry blossom blooming period.

The forecast from the Japan Weather Association indicates that next week is going to be full bloom in Kanto (e.g. Tokyo), Chubu (e.g. Nagoya) , Kansai (e.g. Osaka, Kyoto, Kobe, Nara), Chugoku (e.g. Hiroshima) and Shikoku area (e.g. Matsuyama).

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Top 3 foods you must bring to Hanami (Cherry Blossom picnic)

With the cherry blossom months approaching, people in Japan are excited to be preparing their annual hanami party (picnic party). Most people start to check the cherry blossom forecast to find out the best time and place to have a picnic under the full bloomed cherry blossom tree and prepare the food to bring to the party. It is a tradition for people to gather for food, drinks, dance and playing games while enjoying the scenery and letting the natural floral fragrance refresh people senses.

There are 3 foods that you must not miss out on and they are traditionally accompanied with sake and  green tea.

1. Hanami Bento (Lunch box/picnic food)

Inside the Hanami Bento, it is normal to find items like makizushi (sushi rolls), inarizushi (sushi rice stuffed in fried tofu pouches, tamagoyaki (Japanese-style omelet), or kamaboko (pink and white fish cakes)

2. Hanami Dango

The Hanami Dango is made with glutinous rice flour and 3 dangos are usually served in a skewer in pink, white and green symbolising the three main spring colours in Japan.

3. Sakura Mochi

Kanto Style (e.g. Tokyo)

The Kanto style sakura mochi is made with rice flours and red bean paste wrapped in a salted cherry blossom leaf.

Kansai style (e.g. Kyoto) 

While, Kansai style sakura mochi is made with glutinous rice flour with red bean paste inside and wrapped in a salted cherry blossom leaf.

Start preparing for your hanami party and enjoy a lovely time under the cherry blossom trees with your friends and family!

Related article:

Check out Cherry Blossom Blooming forecast for 2017 in Japan

5 Spectacular Places to See Cherry Blossom in Japan

 

Related Tour

Cherry Blossom Tour 2018

You are always welcome to give us a ring on 020 8543 8133 or email info@japanlinkstravel.co.uk for more inspiration.

 

Cherry Blossom Forecast in Japan 2017

Cherry Blossom Forecast in Japan 2017
29/03/17 Updates

Are you wondering when is the best time to visit Japan for it’s cherry blossom season?
Check out the Forecast table below for more information for your journey.

Geography Facts: Japan is made up with 4 main islands: Hokkaido, Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu( listed from north to south)

Region First Bloom Full Bloom
Hokkaido
Sapporo 2 May 6 May
Hakodate 29 April 4 May
Honshu- Tohoku (Northern)
Aomori 23 April 29 April
Akita 17 April 22 April
Morioka 19 April 25 April
Yamagata 14 April 19 April
Sendai 7 April 14 April
Fukushima 8 April 12 April
Honshu – Kanto (Eastern)
Tokyo 21 March 2 April
Choshi 30 March 6 April
Yokohama 25 March 2 April
Mito 31 March 10 April
Utsunomiya 31 March 9 April
Maebashi 30 March 8 April
Kumagaya 28 April 5 April
Nagano 13 April 18 April
Honshu- Chubu (Central)
Kofu 29 March 3 April
Niigata 8 April 14 April
Toyama 4 April 9 April
Kanazawa 2 April 8 April
Fukui 3 April 9 April
Nagoya 28 March 6 April
Shizuoka 31 March 7 April
Gifu  28 March 6 April
Honshu – Kansai region ( Western Central)
Tsu 1 April 7 April
Osaka 29 March 5 April
Hikone 3 April 9 April
Kyoto 29 March 6 April
Kobe 29 March 6 April
Nara 31 March 5 April
Wakayama 29 March 6 April
Honshu – Chungoku region (Western)
Hiroshima 27March 5 April
Okayama 31 March 8 April
Matsue 1 April 8 April
Tottori 1 April 8 April
Shimmonoseki 29 March 6 April
Shikoku
Takamatsu 31 March 8 April
Tokushima 30 March 7 April
Matsuyama 30 March 6 April
Kochi 29 March 6 April
Kyushu
Fukuoka 25 March 4 April
Oita 3 April 10 April
Nagasaki 30 March 7 April
Saga 1 April 9 April
Kumamoto 1 April 9 April
Miyasaki 4 April 11 April
Kagoshima 4 April 11 April
Okinawa 14 January 8 Feburary

Related Tours

Our expert has hand-picked and put together a tour to some of the best spots to see Cherry Blossom in Japan.
Check out our Cherry Blossom tour!
Remember, you can always tailor-made your journey to Japan with us.

As always, you are welcome to give us a ring at 020 8543 8133 or email us info@japanlinkstravel.co.uk to arrange your journey to Japan with us.