Sakura, the blooming of cherry blossoms is a big hit in Japan. Around this time, everyone is rushing to the parks to celebrate it by having a picnic under the trees.
Of course, you don't need to rely only on your gut feeling: there are many public and a few private sakura forecasts, for each region and city. Even an app is available, but only in Japanese. Where the blossoming starts, crowds are gathering immediately to take photos, selfies, touch the flowers and to cheer. It might sound strange at the first time but their enthusiasm is contagious, and you soon find yourself looking for cherry blossoms as if this was the only reason you came to Japan for.
My trick was to check the hashtags "
Hopefully, the shore of the little lake on the Northeast side of the Imperial Palace will be in full blossom by tomorrow. It's probably here that the best shots can be taken, even in the evening.
Of course, it wouldn't be Japan if you couldn't eat the sakura, as well. A lot of desserts are made in limited editions at this time, like the sakura mochi, the most important one, which is a sticky rice dumpling filled with red beans; the tea or the infusion of salted cherry blossom flower in hot water that I received after my matcha in a great tearoom with fantastic ambiance. These are mainly of symbolic importance - as are so many things Japan - and are not consumed for their taste. And, naturally, you'll find sakura decorations everywhere, on the plates, in the tearooms, in the shops and restaurants.
The other link to gastronomy is the Hanami party, the picnic preferably directly under a blooming cherry blossom tree. There's no set menu, and luckily, in
You'd better start now to plan the next spring season because the closer you get, the more difficult it becomes to book anything.