The weeping cherry trees along Buke Yashiki-dori provide more joy than their name suggests. These beautiful trees, known as shidare-zakura, can be found along the Hinokinai River embankment in Kakunodate, Akita. During the sakura festival, these trees are in full bloom, displaying their light pink blossoms and creating a stunning sight for visitors to enjoy.
One of the highlights of the festival is taking an evening stroll along the river surrounded by illuminated sakura. The soft glow of the lights brings out the beauty of the cherry blossoms, creating a magical atmosphere. As you walk along the river, you can also explore the various stalls that sell snacks and goods. This is a great opportunity to try some local delicacies and pick up souvenirs to remember your visit.
Another highlight of the festival is the cherry blossom viewing parties. These parties are a chance to mingle with the locals and experience the traditional Japanese custom of hanami, which means “flower viewing.” During these parties, people gather under the cherry trees, enjoy food and drinks, and appreciate the beauty of the blossoms. It’s a festive and joyous atmosphere that adds to the overall experience of the sakura festival.
To get to Kakunodate, you can easily access it by train or bus from Akita City and neighboring areas. From Kakunodate Station, the Hinokinai River is just a 15-minute walk away. This makes it convenient for visitors to explore the festival and enjoy the beauty of the cherry blossoms.
The cherry blossoms along Buke Yashiki-dori have a rich history. It is believed that these trees were planted around 1656, making them over 350 years old. The shidare-zakura trees can grow up to 15 meters tall and 20 meters wide, creating a stunning canopy of blossoms. Walking under these trees feels like stepping into a fairytale world, surrounded by delicate pink petals and the gentle scent of cherry blossoms.
In addition to the cherry trees along Buke Yashiki-dori, there are also over 400 cherry trees that stretch approximately two kilometers along the riverside. These trees create a long tunnel of blossoms, making it a popular spot for visitors to take a leisurely walk. The historical samurai district is just a five-minute walk from the river, where you can wander alongside the samurai houses adorned with cherry blossoms. This combination of history and natural beauty creates a unique and memorable experience.
The sakura festival in Kakunodate takes place from April 20 until May 5. During this time, more than 1.2 million tourists visit each year to witness the beauty of the cherry blossoms. The festival attracts both locals and international visitors, creating a diverse and vibrant atmosphere. It’s a time of celebration and appreciation for the fleeting beauty of the sakura.
As with any outdoor event, it’s important to check the official website for the latest information. Due to the COVID-19 pandemic, there may be changes to the festival schedule or restrictions in place. It’s always best to stay informed and follow any guidelines or regulations to ensure a safe and enjoyable experience.
In conclusion, the sakura festival in Kakunodate is a wonderful opportunity to immerse yourself in the beauty of cherry blossoms. The weeping cherry trees along Buke Yashiki-dori and the tunnel of blossoms along the riverside create a stunning backdrop for the festival. Whether you’re taking an evening stroll along the river, enjoying the snacks and goods at the stalls, or mingling with the locals at the cherry blossom viewing parties, there’s something for everyone to enjoy. Don’t miss the chance to experience this magical event and witness the joy that the weeping cherry trees bring.
Address And Maps Location:
Kakunodatemachi Higashikatsuraku-cho, Senboku-shi, Akita-ken