Japan is known to have the most beautiful and extravagant Cherry Blossoms around the country, which can be seen in full bloom from March through May—the exact month depends on the region. Although Tokyo may be your first stop, we recommend embarking further out to Sapporo, Kyoto, Fukuoka and Sendai to experience Japan’s Chery Blossom festival. From north to south and east to west, here are the best cities to partake in this beautiful, natural phenomenon.

Sapporo

Sapporo is the food capital of the nation—pair that with the Cherry Blossom Festival and you’ve gone yourself one tremendous trip. From about the 29th of April to the 6th of May, you can experience the Cherry trees in full bloom in different parks around the city, one of which is Nakajima Park. You can rent a boat and paddle through the pond while gazing at the cherry trees all around you. It’s a romantic way to enjoy the beautiful views. Or, head to Moerenuma Park filled with thousands of blooming Cherry trees. There’s even a hill you can climb up to observe the scenery all around the park. Hiraoka Park is also another place to experience the Cherry Blossoms and Plum Blossoms (they are similar to the Cherry tree but smaller in size).

Kyoto

Aside from all the beautiful historic sites in Kyoto, this destination is another place to experience Cherry Blossoms. Tetsugaku no Michi—a path spans about 1.24 miles—is the number one place to see the Cherry trees blooming. Aside from the trees, there are food stalls, restaurants, temples and shrines along the path as well for you to enjoy. Another way to see the Cherry Blossoms is via the Okazaki canal cruise, lined with cherry trees, or at Maruyama Park where you can also see the Weeping Cherry of Gion, which lights up every night. The park has several outdoor tearooms with seats for you to enjoy a tasty treat or a warm drink.

Fukuoka

Towards the southern part of Japan lies Fukuoka, known for its beach life, shrines and temples. And from the 28th of March to the 5th of April, you can experience the Cherry Blossoms. Nishi Park, located on the side of a hill, is one of the best places to see these beauties as well as pick up some food at one of the food stalls and take some panoramic photos of the city. You can also head to Uminonakamichi Seaside Park where a variety of Cherry Trees line all the pathways. Or, to Maizuru Park. Among the cherry trees in this park are the remains of a 17th-century castle that was destroyed during the Meiji Renovation.

Sendai

Located four hours north of Tokyo is the city of Sendai, where one of the most famous and largest festivals in Japan takes place called the Tanabata (“star”) Festival. Aside from Tanabata, Sendai is another destination where you can see the Cherry trees, which are in full bloom from around the 7th to the 16th of April. One of the best spots to see them is in Tsutsujigaoka Park. Vendors open up shop here to sell food and sake, and in the evening you can enjoy a stroll around the park that’s illuminated with paper lanterns. You can also experience the Cherry Blossoms at other parks in Sendai including Mikamine Park and Nishi Park, both of which are located in the city. If you’re up for a little adventure, take the train to Shiogama city and see the 1200-year-old Shinto shrine surrounded by more than 300 cherry blossoms—it’s a remarkable site that shouldn’t be missed.

Have you seen the Cherry Blossoms in Japan? If so, which place did you find to have the most beautiful views?

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