Every year, the Ushi-Tenjin Kitano Shrine puts on a wonderful plum blossom festival during February that celebrates koubai (red plum blossoms). The shrine enshrines the ancient poet Sugawara no Michizane, who was known for his love of the blooming flower.
While the Koubai Festival will last the whole of February, a special ceremony will happen on the third Sunday of the month from 1:30 p.m. This year, that’s on February 19. Visitors will be treated to a ceremony, taiko performance, and 200 visitors can take home a small plum twig. The open-air tea ceremony will be canceled again this year.
For the duration of the festival, you can try amazake (a fermented rice drink, which is actually non-alcoholic) and ginger tea on Saturdays. On Sunday, they offer plum sweets, dried plums, and Kitano no Fukukoubai, a kind of umeshu (plum wine) that’s been fermented for 5–10 years.Organizers may cancel events, alter schedules, or change admission requirements without notice. Always check official sites before heading to an event.