According to the forecast, it’s a good weekend to see Tokyo’s iconic cherry blossoms. So get your picnics and cameras ready, it’s time for sakura!
Cherry blossom festivals
Ueno Cherry Blossom Festival (March 21-April 8): The rowdiest, most iconic spot in all of Tokyo to enjoy cherry blossoms. Ueno Park is decked out with blue picnic tarps (good luck finding a spot), illuminations, food stalls and a ton (we mean A TON) of people.
Rikugien Gardens: Cherry Blossom Illuminations (March 21-April 5): The stunning cherry trees at Rikugien in Komagome will be illuminated at night for a limited time. Most famous is the mystical and giant weeping willow. Entry to the gardens is 300 yen for adults.
Bokutei Cherry Blossom Festival (March 22-April 8): More illuminations can be found at Sumida Park in Asakusa. Take a stroll along the park’s kilometer-long line of cherry trees and grab some tasty treats at the many food stalls too!
Toshimaen Sakura Matsuri (March 24-April 4): Tap into your kid-self and enjoy cherry blossom season at Toshimaen amusement park’s “Sakura Nights”. Illuminations splash pink and white over the 500 cherry trees in the park, and if you ride one of the rollercoasters (like the Eagle), you’ll get a view of the blossoms that will be like nothing else in Japan.
Nakameguro Cherry Blossom Festival (March 24-April 10): The Nakameguro Canal provides the perfect and most picturesque backdrop from your cherry blossom viewing. It’s one of Tokyo’s most popular sakura spots, with illuminations, lanterns and festival stalls.
Edo Fukagawa Sakura Festival (March 24-April 11): The Edo-Fukagawa matsuri offers not only illuminations and plenty of food, but boat rides too! For 500 yen per person, take a ride on a wasen (traditional-style) boat along the nearby river in the quiet Monzen-Nakacho neighborhood. You’ll need to register though, so see the event listing for more info.
National Museum of Western Art – Free Admission Day (March 24): This Saturday, check out the extensive permanent collection at the Museum of Western Art in Ueno Park for free! Works includes paintings from the late medieval period through to the 20th century and modern French sculpture. Artists include Ruebens, Renoir, Monet, Van Gogh, Picasso, Pollock and many more.
Tokyo and Japan have a reputation for the strange and unusual museums.
Yayoi Nights at 300BAR (March 24-25): The three 300BAR locations will be decorated with beautiful cherry blossoms for sakura celebrations. Limited-time sakura-themed drinks will be available all week, and on March 24th and 25th, they go all out with a special wa-inspired music, snacks, lighting, and more.
Ekoda Night Bazaar (March 24): Some solid family fun to be had at this nighttime market. There will be locals shops selling their wares on the streets, yatai (street food) stalls serving up some sweet and savory treats, and activities for kids.
Anime Japan (March 24-25): This is the event for any anime lover. Head over to Tokyo Big Sight for a look at upcoming anime, exhibits, official merchandise booths, stage shows, freebies, cosplay, and seminars on the anime industry (sadly, only in Japanese). There’s also a family area for wholesome, kid-oriented anime; only children of elementary school age and younger, as well as their guardians, can access this area.
In our pilot episode, we're joined by Alvin Cheung of ABC Coffee, Hapnick, and Tokyo Keyboards