Sakura hanami is one of the most awaited events here in Japan. It is the time when people go to parks and have picnics under the sakura trees. The word hanami was a combination of hana which means flower and mi from the word miru meaning to see. Sakura or cherry blossoms are the most popular. Unlike other flowers, the sakura only last a few days. That's why people clamour to see them at their peak before the wind blows the blossoms away. Most of the time parks and gardens are full of mats and people having picnics under the trees.
Sakura Hanami Along Tokyo Waters
Every year, my husband and I would go to different places for Sakura hanami. Nowadays, you can also enjoy the sakura viewing at night with a glass of champagne or beer. For those who would like to be updated as to when is the good time to see sakura, check Japan National Tourism's forecasts. This year, we tried to get away from the crowd. Our bikes brought us to Kiba which is about 30-45 minutes away from our place.
Kiba has a good mix of residential, commercial, and recreational areas. Its proximity to central Tokyo greatly influences the increasing high-rise mansions (condo-style apartments) and business offices. Yet the city is able to preserve its quaint ambiance.
Not far away from Kiba Park is a canal system flowing to different areas of the city. Along its bed are different varieties of sakura trees for people to enjoy.
Hoping to get a glimpse of sakura before they were gone, we also made a walk along the canal near Gyosen Park here in Nishi-Kasai. Sadly, we did not make in time for the hanami festival. But we were still able to catch some of the food stalls and see the boatmen.