While each season of the year has its own unique charm, Spring is undoubtedly one of the most welcomed as it heralds warmer days. Each country has their own unique aspects that really shine come spring, but Japan takes it to a whole new level. From beautiful parks that are awash with spring flowers, to temples surrounded in a sea of cherry blossoms, this country is one that is best enjoyed during this season. Whether you’re planning your first trip or planning a return trip, these are some great places that you should visit during the spring season in Japan!
In Japan, the spring season usually has its peak between late April and early May. The snow from the mountains begins to recede and temperatures begin to rise. The average temperatures of several different cities for May will be listed.
- Sapporo, 14 degrees celsius.
- Tokyo, 18 degrees celsius.
- Osaka, 20 degrees celsius.
- Kyoto, 18 degrees celsius.
Keep in mind that temperatures do waver between warmer and colder, so plan accordingly. Also avoid visiting in early May as that’s when Golden Week starts in Japan, and the majority of the country goes on vacation for several days. If you choose to go then, all transportation will be clogged up and many attractions will be packed. When planning your trip, try and choose multiple places to see in each town, though that can be hard as generally each town packs enough content to last you for at least a week. Finally, be open minded to visiting new places! Even if a location has cherry blossoms and you just visited several locations that had them, that doesn’t necessarily mean that this new location won’t be absolutely stunning. Hopefully this guide will help you pick a few places that you’d like to visit should you choose to visit Japan in Spring!
Shinjuku Gyoen National Park is undoubtedly one of the best city parks in the world. While several times smaller than Central Park of NYC, it makes up for the size with its beauty. The park is broken up into various sections, each portraying flowers from around the world, and there are both plenty of cherry blossoms to see and a wide open lawn to sit down and relax on. If you’re only able to make it to Tokyo, stopping by this park is a must.
Buddhist temples and Shinto shrines are a must-see if you’re traveling to Japan, and what better season to go by than in Spring? Not only will you be able to see traditional and historic buildings, but you’ll also experience the beauty of the hundreds of cherry blossoms that are located around the area. Sitting/Standing at or around the temple, which is located in Kyoto, is the best place to enjoy the view. Late March to Late April is the best time to visit.
Odori and Kawashimo Park
While Japan is well known for its culture, cherry blossoms, and landscapes; there are many other types of flowers that adorn the country and make it feel like a wonderland in spring. Plum blossoms, tulips, violets, peach flowers, lilacs, and shibazakura all spread their petals in spring to make a truly wondrous sight. In the case of these two parks, a festival called the ‘Sapporo Lilac Festival” encompasses Odori and Kawashimo parks, where locals celebrate both the coming of spring and the beautiful flowers. The parks not only have numerous flowers to see, but also traditional Japanese tea ceremonies, ramen shows, manga artists, and flower art! The best time to visit is in Mid to Late May.
Fuji Motosuko Resort, Yamanashi
Mt. Fuji, one of the most iconic symbols of Japan, is an absolute wonder to behold every season of the year. However, what makes spring special is the blooming of hundreds of thousands of flowers that bloom around a lake, featuring Mt. Fuji as a backdrop. This location is managed by the Fuji Motosuko Resort and their caring of these flowers, which are called shibazakura and come in 7 varieties, draws thousands of people here every year. The “Fujisan Umaimono Festa” is also held nearby which local foods from Mt. Fuji area are served, so if you’re looking for something to eat, that’s a great place to stop at! If the wonders of nature excite you, then this will make for a very memorable experience. The best time to visit is Mid-April to late May.
This historic castle was originally built back in 1333 and over the centuries underwent many remodelings. The many cherry blossom trees in the area, the peaceful river, and the overall town makes this location a memorable place. Standing at the top of the castle, you’re able to see much of the surrounding area and the combination of mountains, rivers, and pink cherry blossoms paints a picturesque scene. If you can fit it into your travel plans, Himeji Castle will offer you a view that you won’t soon forget.
Arashiyama Bamboo Grove
At this point, you’ve probably come to realize that Kyoto is arguably the best place to experience spring in Japan. If all the past locations didn’t already convince you, then perhaps this one will. The Arashiyama Bamboo Grove in Kyoto is an absolute wonder and is the most photographed spot in the city. Yet, no picture can capture the true marvel of walking beneath the climbing bamboo. You’ll feel as if you’re in another world and no other place in the world can offer you this magical experience. The grove is open 24 hours a day and is only 10 minutes away from the Saga Arashiyama train station.
With both this article and our previous one, you should now have a pretty good idea of the best activities and locations to visit in Japan during spring. While the country is always a wonder to visit year-round, there are certain things that can only be experienced during the spring season which make the trip very worthwhile. Hopefully you have the opportunity to visit this beautiful country and experience all that it has to offer.