Hanami festival in Japan will be officially started when the first cherry blossom tree is blooming. It is probably the biggest festival and the busiest season where people from all over the worlds are coming to Japan just to see the Sakura flower. There are a lot of events will be hold, a lot of food stands will be opened and a lot of special products will be launched and all of those are all about Sakura.
What Japanese Do During Hanami Festival?
During hanami festival you will find a lot of event schedules in all over the country and all families will plan a time to enjoy a picnic under the cherry blossom tree. That’s the tradition. If you are willing to have your own picnic experience under the cherry blossom tree, it is a perfect time but just don’t expect too much. If you want to have a quite or romantic picnic with your partner under a cherry blossom tree, you really need to work really hard to find an empty spot first because during hanami festival, wherever there are cherry blossom trees, there are the people having picnics.
Hanami Snacks in Sakura Theme
The unique thing about hanami festival is there are a lot of seasonal snacks that are offered in Sakura theme. There are a lot of options of traditional snacks with Sakura theme you could find but also there are some so not traditional food and beverage products that are also offered in Sakura theme.
Dango is one of traditional Japanese snack made from rice flour, similar to mochi but during Hanami you will find this snack is especially made with some color elements of Sakura.
Sakura mochi is mochi which is especially made so match the hanami theme. There are two types of Sakura mochi, first is Kansai style and second is Kanto style.
Sakura wagashi is one type of wagashi (Japanese’s traditional sweet) which is made in the form of Sakura flower to celebrate the hanami.
Sakura KitKat is special edition KitKat offered only during hanami festival. Well, Japanese is so obsessed with KitKat, there are more than 300 flavors of KitKat you could find in Japan, so it is not weird at all if during hanami festival, you will find KitKat with Sakura flavor is offered in all stores you could find in Japan.
Pepsi Sakura Edition is another international product with special edition that you could find only in Japan. Perhaps only in Japan you could find Pepsi in flower flavor instead of fruit flavor.
Sakura sake is also very popular during this festival since sake is one of the alcohol beverages that is very popular in Japan, now you could have the Sakura flavor as well.
The Best Place to Go for Hanami Festival
Though it is not easy to find an empty spot under cherry blossom tree during the festival but it doesn’t mean you cannot enjoy the beauty of the Sakura. Below is some recommendation of places or things you should do to enjoy Hanami festival.
If you are really looking for a quite place to enjoy the beauty of Sakura, perhaps riding boats under the cherry blossoms at Chidori ga Fuchi could be an alternative.
Watching some traditional performances and tea ceremonies to celebrate Hanami in Yushima Tenjin Shrine.
Enjoy a walk under cherry blossom tree in Hanegi park. In weekends (February), you will find this park is crowded with food vendors, music performance and of course the beautiful cherry blossoms.
For full experience of walking under hundred flowering cherry blossom tree, you should go to Koganei Park.
Well, if you are looking for a unique and different experience to spend your spring, Japan is where you should go because of its Hanami festival.