Hanami Season in Full Bloom

by Denis Plamondon

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Hanami inspires a young woman artist Imperial Palace Gardens Tokyo

Hanami inspires a young artist at Tokyo's Imperial Palace Gardens

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Although the Hanami Season is a recurrent event, its splendor has no comparison.  It’s a natural phenomenon that is guided by the weather and its uncertainty.

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Cherry Blossom in full bloom in Naka-Meguro Tokyo

Cherry blossom in full bloom in Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

As accurate as the Japanese may be in their ability to predict their environment, the arrival of cherry blossom season isn’t an exact science like a train that enters a station.  Hanami (literally “flower viewing”) offers an element of surprise every year .

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Intense blue sky with Cherry Flowers at Imperial Palace Tokyo

Blossoms against an intense blue sky Tokyo's at Imperial Palace

In central Honshu, trees are now flourishing as the temperature warms up. At the moment, this topic is on everyone’s mind and featured in most blogs, magazines, ads, and window displays.  Its popularity is not only due to its exquisiteness, but also to the customs attached – a series of gatherings and parties all over Japan.

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Picnic among friends in Ueno Park Tokyo

Picnic among friends in Ueno Park, Tokyo

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Picnic under a Cherry Blossom Tree In Ueno Park, Tokyo

Picnic under a cherry tree in Ueno Park, Tokyo

People from all horizons come to enjoy this special event. Office colleagues, co-workers, students, teachers, old and young, converge at their favorite spots, a gesture that is repeated year after year with the same awe and astonishment.

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Hanami captivates after sunset Ueno Park Tokyo

Hanami captivates even after sunset in Ueno Park, Tokyo

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Hanami season is the perfect time to meet and share a picnic with others under a cherry tree in full bloom. Often, smaller groups may be more open to invite you to join. Don’t look down on the offer; it’s a great opportunity to meet Japanese and enjoy some local cuisine, sake and beer.

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A flow of romance under the Sakura Tress Naka-Meguro in Tokyo

A flow of romance under the sakura trees in Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

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It’s also a good period for business for local citizens living in the vicinity of these popular locations.  Many open their little restaurants and bars onto the street.  If you go along the canal in Naka-Meguro, for example, you will be welcomed by spirited vendors selling all kinds of snacks and drinks that are especially made for the event.

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busy-selling-alcool-during-hanami-season-in-naka-meguro

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The crowd is dense during these rare weekends, so don’t rush your way through.  Enjoy a leisurely stroll under the blossoms instead.

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Hanami is good for Business, Naka-Meguro Tokyo

Hanami is good for business, Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

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Waiting for the train after the Hanami visit in Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

Waiting for the train after the Hanami in Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

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A river of Cherry Blossom Trees in Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

A river of blossom in Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

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Hanami in a mirror in Naka-Meguro, Tokyo

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