Hanami is the name of one of the oldest festivals in Japan which literally means “seeing flowers” and the celebration of blossoming season of cherry trees. Flowering marks the beginning of spring and is a very important celebration in Japan.
Preparations begin weeks before the blooming of cherry trees, during which Japaneses begin to draft plans for the holidays that give the welcome to the spring season.
Basically the Hanami presupposes a picnic with family, friends or colleagues under a cherry tree, in which everyone fraternizes and has fun.
If you have a scheduled trip to Tokyo during this time and want to enjoy the Hanami festival to experience this experience as a true Japanese, look for one of the following locations:
1. Shinjuku Gyoen
In this place there are over a thousand cherry trees of dozens of varieties, with trees that bloom earlier and others later. The lawns are spacious and the environment breathes calm and tranquility.
2. Ueno Park
One of the most popular places in Tokyo for Hanami parties. It is sought by many people and therefore somewhat noisy, but it is also one of the liveliest. This park has more than a thousand cherry trees.
Hundreds of cherry trees decorate the grounds that surround the moats of Edo Castle, which are filled with water, creating one of the most spectacular scenery of the city when the trees are in bloom. There are paddle boats available for rent and several food stalls can be found nearby.
4. Sumida Park
This park stretches along the banks of the Sumida River. You can appreciate the flowering of the trees from the boats that sail in the river and when it gets dark, the cherry trees are illuminated, giving a beautiful image.
5. Yoyogi Park
More than 600 cherry trees offer pleasant picnic spots and there are several booths selling food, for those who do not want to bring from home.