Sakura viewing is one of the much-awaited events in Japan. This is the time when influx of people from all over the world visit the country to have a glimpse of the cherry blossoms in full bloom. Every year, between last week of March until second week of April, the whole country transforms into a beautiful and festive scenery. Major roads and tourists spots were planted with hundreds of cherry trees for people to enjoy its delicate beauty. Every year, I try to go around Tokyo for sakura viewing. However for this year, I decided to stay in Nishi-Kasai instead. For one, the weather has been very unpredictable recently. Most of the time gloomy and from time to time rainy. The sakuras were in full bloom during the first days of April but because of rain, a lot of them already fell.
Nishi-Kasai is one of the districts of Edogawa-ku (or Edogawa City) of Tokyo which serves as the boundary between Chiba and Tokyo. From Tokyo Central, it takes around 20 minutes via Tozai Line through Nihombashi or Otemachi stations. It has a quite a number of parks and recreational facilities for families to enjoy.
Sakura Viewing Spots in Nishi-Kasai
Trying to catch the sakuras in their prime beauty, my friend and I went around Nishi-Kasai for sakura viewing. We went to our favorite spots and we were fortunate that we almost had them for ourselves.
1. Gyosen Park
When friends come to visit us here in Nishi-Kasai, I always bring them to Gyosen Park. All year round this place is beautiful as it is. There is a fountain where children can play with water in summer. There is also a zoo with penguins, monkeys, panda, turtles, and wallabies. The park has also a traditional Japanese tea house with a big pond as well as two other ponds for fishing. Its beauty changes every season. In front of the zoo entrance is an open space filled with sakura trees.
2. Ukita Park
Just a few meters away from Gyosen Park, there is another open space known as Ukita Park. We love the pink and white sakuras alternately planted in this park. There is a small hill where people can climb to get closer to the sakura. This place makes us feel like we are in the clouds of sakuras.
3. Shinkawa Canal
Shinkawa Canal connects Edogawa River to Nakagawa River. Along the canal are white sakura trees which add to the nostalgic feel of old Tokyo. There were some wooden bridges that allow people to strategically take pictures capturing the beauty of the canal, the sakuras, and the Sky Tree.
4. Sakura Park near Shinkawa Canal
Just a few blocks away from Shinkawa Canal towards Nishi-Kasai Station is a park and a playground surrounded by several white and pinkish sakura trees. Hence called Sakura Park. There is a big open space where people can have hanami or picnics under the sakura trees.
And in front is my favorite spot which I call Sakura Dori or Sakura Road. I love how the trees created a magnificent sakura arc. Taking a picture has always been a challenge because we always need for the right time when we can stand in the middle of the road.
5. Shinsui River Park
This is quite far and total opposite direction from the first three spots above but it is also worth the trip to go to Shinsui River Park. White sakura trees were planted along the river banks for people to enjoy while having a barbecue or paddling the swan boats.