Under the falling petals / 桜の花の散る下に

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 11

Hanami, the overarching term for enjoying the cherry blossoms in Japan, usually runs from the end of March until mid April in Tokyo. Every year, I get to enjoy it in some shape of form: some years a lot, while others not so much due to being busy at work.

This year, I managed to enjoy the sakura a fair bit, especially since I work in Meguro and was able to walk along the quiet river each morning before the tourist droves arrived. I was also lucky enough to picnic in Daikanyama with friends, as well as at Kinuta Park in Setagaya with Miss IKIMASHO. Kinuta turned out to be an amazing experience, and I will be back there next year for sure. With its enormous trees, and weaving, low-lying branches, it felt like a fairytale.

This morning, while cycling near Komazawa, I saw some sakura petals still blowing in the wind. The streets continue to be littered with pink flowers, though by next week I imagine they will all be gone for another year. The end of hanami usually signals warmer temperatures, and looking at the forecast for this week, it will rise to 20°C and most likely not drop under this again until November.

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 7

Mid-afternoon on a weekend means Nakameguro is packed, with policemen usually trying their best to control the crowds who want to walk down the river.

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 3

Thankfully there are none of these crowds in the early morning on my way to work, allowing me to appreciate the tunnel of flowers…

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 14

And the river filled with flowers.

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 8

Hanami in Daikanyama with friends meant a snack overload…

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 9

And bodies everywhere

Ten-en hiking trail kamakura 17

Pink petals against a blue sky

Ten-en hiking trail kamakura 7

The blue and pink of hanami season

Ten-en hiking trail kamakura 6

These blossoms were actually from Kamakura a few weeks earlier

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 13

The beautiful thing about sakura season in Japan is that you don’t necessarily have to go to a park to enjoy it. The parks are mainly for the social aspect of it all, and meeting with friends. If you just want quiet time virtually every street will have a few trees scattered about the place.

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 11

A mammoth wall of trees in Kinuta Park

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 12

Families and friends enjoying the sakura

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 5

Lying  down looking up at the trees, the sun splitting through the branches.

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 10

Lunch under a cherry blossom tree

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 4

In Kinuta Park the tree branches sweep right down to the ground meaning you can be fully immersed in what feels like a maze of flowers.

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 2


Rabbits dressed up Tokyo

A group of girls had brought their rabbits to the park for a photo shoot

Rabbits dressed up Tokyo 2

I couldn’t resist 🐰

Sakura cherry blossoms Tokyo 6

I hope these pictures bring back happy memories for you if you have ever seen sakura in Japan, or inspire you to visit the country in the future. While it can be a busy period to visit Japan, if you do a little research you can find some quiet and wonderful spots to enjoy the blossoms. ❤ Justin (IKIMASHO!)

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