Spring Glory: Cherry Blossoms in Hirosaki Castle

1 May

Hirosaki 2 (398x640)

The cherry blossom season finally arrived in Aomori last week.  Sakura (cherry blossoms) began to bloom in the southern parts of Japan a few months ago and slowly moved up to the north.

Over the weekend I drove to Hirosaki, a western city of Aomori, known for beautiful cherry blossoms.  There are about 2600 cherry trees around the famous castle built in 1611 by the Tsugaru Clan.   It is where a cherry blossom festival is held every year from April 23 to May 5, when cherry blossoms are usually in bloom.

On the day I visited, they were in full bloom.  I was not expecting that, since a local man had told me this year’s peak bloom might be delayed due to the heavy snow in the winter.  So it was a wonderful surprise to see the entire city covered in various kinds of cherry trees (yes, there are many different types of them).  Walking through the cherry blossom tunnels, I could see the castle behind the trees.  They were gorgeous.

The cherry blossom season is short.  They reach full bloom about a week after the opening of the first blossoms, and a week later the blooming peak is over and the blossoms begin to fall from the trees.  Perhaps this short-lived nature of cherry blossoms is what makes them special to the hearts of Japanese.  They are breathtaking only for a little while, and we’ll have to wait for another year.  In my case I had waited for much longer – 18 years to be exact – since the last I had seen them bloom in Japan.

Hirosaki was a wonderful place to view sakura, one of the most beautiful and memorable hanami (cherry blossom viewing) I have ever experienced.

Hirosaki 4 (640x360) HIrosaki 6 (640x360)Hirosaki 7 (360x640)

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5 Responses to “Spring Glory: Cherry Blossoms in Hirosaki Castle”

  1. Susanne A May 1, 2014 at 8:17 pm #

    Lovely pictures!

  2. Erwin May 14, 2014 at 10:38 am #

    Hi Yumi, I am glad you were able to enjoy Hirosaki Sakura after so many years. Hirosaki is undoubtedly one of the best places to see Sakura in Japan. Thank you for posting the lovely article. Would you be back for the Nebuta?

    • Yumi May 14, 2014 at 6:40 pm #

      Thank you for your comment. I’d love to see the Nabutata again, possibly in Hirosaki this time. 🙂

  3. Faisal J. June 3, 2014 at 8:25 am #

    Reblogged this on That Dark Alley.

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