Monday, March 5, 2018

Guide to Chase Cherry Blossom in Japan + 2018 Forecast

Guide to Chase Cherry Blossom in Japan Blog |
Ohayo, Dreamers! Who has cherry blossom dream like me? I've finally reached that dream although I don't think I can stop dreaming about another one. My trip to Japan last year (21 March to 3 April) was actually one week too early to catch the full bloom of Sakura. I took that decision because I thought Kansai area would already bloom at that time and also....the ticket price was like 2 mio cheaper. Like it's not enough, the weather was quite bad (raining all the time) and it's also one of the elements that matter to the bloom time. So, don't make mistake like mine (well, not quite a mistake tho, I loveeed it) and do more research about the cherry blossom forecast! I will also give you a little guide to chase cherry blossom in Japan in this post! :)

Best time to Chase Cherry Blossom in Japan |
Actually the best time to visit Japan for chasing Cherry Blossom is from end of March to early April. Like, really the end of the month, not (more than) one last week of the month like me, hahaha. Can you imagine how sad I was when I had to leave Japan when the sakura was full bloomed? I can literally see pink color along the train ride. CRY! :))  I think starting from 27 March is okay. Also note that the bloom is usually starting from the bottom area to the top area of Japan (from Okinawa to Kyushuu to Kansai to Kanto to Hokkaido). Actually, you can catch the early bloom Sakura at Kawazu area.
To make this guide to chase Cherry Blossom post more complete, I'm gonna give the 2018 Cherry Blossom forecast ;)
2018 Japan Cherry Blossom Forecast |
Also read this: Enjoying Spring in Japan
There are a lot of great spots to see Cherry Blossom/ Sakura / doing Hanami with your travel mates/family. I really want to experience Hanami next time, it looks fun but I was traveling alone so I couldn't do that. I'd be awkward, lol. So, I actually couldn't visit many places because the Sakura hadn't bloomed yet. I did catch some at Osaka Castle but Kyoto? Nope. Most of my Cherry Blossom moments were in Tokyo. I also missed some spots (as I went to Disneyland and Disney Sea for 2 days) but worry not, still gonna tell you those spots I missed :p

Meguro River
The Cherry Blossom at Meguro River is definitely my favorite!!! I may sound exaggerating but I felt like crying when I saw those Sakura along the river and couldn't feel more grateful for having that chance. It's really really beautiful (although it's also freaking cold, haha!) and it's not even full bloomed yet. You will find a lot of snacks stalls too along the road, I bought grilled sausage + martini and omg it's the best combo to enjoy while staring at those Sakura, lol. Such a shame I lost the photo :(

Ueno Park
Hands down to Ueno Park, it's that well-known Cherry Blossom spot everyone knows. It's beautiful, filled with more than 1000 sakura trees, in pink and white color, but I had one problem. It's TOO CROWDED! I barely could walk and enjoying the flowers.

To avoid crazy crowd, you should visit it early in the morning, like 6 A.M. *slapped* ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚ Like the other Cherry Blossom spots, Ueno Park also offers a massive food/snacks/merchandise area! I ate a lot but ended up lose all the photos because my phone's memory card is broken.

Shiba Park
Shiba Park may not be the popular Cherry Blossom spot and I actually accidentally found it when I was strolling around from Tokyo Tower to find Zojo-ji Temple. It looks like a school park you can see at anime/manga, surrounded by Sakura trees, and some youngsters had Hanami there with their friends. You can also see Tokyo Tower from here. So sad I didn't take proper photos because my camera was dead :(

Shinjuku Gyoen
Photo by: @avisislamy 
Shinjuku Gyoen is also a great spot to see cherry blossom, it even had some early bloom but unfortunately I didn't make it here. I didn't include it in my itinerary and I also couldn't insert it somewhere during the trip. My friend who visited it earlier is kind enough to give me some of his pics so I can show you guys ;) It's an early bloom, as you can still see some of the green leaves.

This spot is actually one of my must-see cherry blossom spot but I couldn't visit it in the end. It's quite far and somehow I didn't want to go there alone, hahaha. I want to be with someone (friend or whoever) because I want to ride the boat. Too scared to ride it alone ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

Yoyogi Park
Yoyogi Park is near Harajuku, around 5 minutes walk from Harajuku station. I visited Harajuku 2 times and yet didn't make it to Yoyogi Park (nor Meiji Shrine), ha! It's also one of the best spot to enjoy Cherry Blossom while doing Hanami or picnic. Next time, Yoyogi, next time.

๐Ÿ’– Too see more spots to chase your Cherry Blossom experience in Tokyo, you can visit this Japan Guide page: Tokyo Cherry Blossom Spots
Yep! I found a lot of Sakura trees accidentally while strolling around or walking from guest house to the train station. One of my most favorite find is this Sakura tree in front of a house (yes, a house) at Uguisudani area.
It was raining, it was freaking cold but I couldn't resist to stop and taking bunch of pics until my hands froze. Rain drops at Sakura petals? Sugoi!
Actually, when Sakura is in its full bloom period, you can easily find it everywhere! You may not enjoy it to the fullest, you can't do Hanami, but at least you see the real Sakura tree in front of you with your own eyes, lol. The rule is simple tho, you see Sakura, you take picture :))
Cherry Blossom in Osaka
I was too early for cherry blossom in Kansai Area, but I was lucky enough to see some at Osaka Castle Park, which you can read more at this post: Guide to Osaka Castle
Okay, that's it for this guide to chase cherry blossom in Japan! I hope this post can be helpful and enjoyable ;) I also made some pics you can pin to your Pinterest board below ;)

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