10 Mar 2016
2 min read
With cherry blossom season shortly upon us, FOUR tells you where to go and which sake to drink to make the most of this cherry party tradition…
Best Sake

Sayuki, Hakutsuru Sake

This creamy, unfiltered sake is a perfect accompaniment to the beautiful pink cherry blossom. Pair it with some Yakitori or Sukiyaki and its refreshing aroma and natural sweetness will lift you up where the blossom is.

Superior Junmai Ginko, Hakutsuru Sake

A traditionally brewed sake, you can’t get a more culturally in-tune drink for this occasion. With its flowery aroma and well-balanced taste, it goes well with salty dishes.

Best Locations

Shinjuku Gyoen, Tokyo

With over one thousand cherry trees of dozens of varieties, there is a plethora of special areas to lap up the peaceful environment. Its early and late blooming trees give you the opportunity to visit for the entire blooming season to catch a Hanami party.

Ueno Park, Tokyo

One of Japan’s busiest cherry blossom party locations, Ueno Park has over one thousand trees. Get there 1-3 days in advance of the season, as these trees are early bloomers.

Maruyama Park, Kyoto

With its huge weeping cherry tree taking pride of place, this park is a popular Hanami party location. The tree is lit up at night and food stands become alive with celebrating locals.

Tsurugaoka Hachimangu Shrine, Kamakura

A spectacular place to enjoy a Hanami party, the final approach to the shrine is lined and covered by a cherry blossom tunnel for 500 meters. A true sight to behold!

Fuji Five Lakes, Lake Kawaguchiko

Head to the northern shores of Lake Kawaguchiko to get the most incredible view of Mount Fuji from behind the cherry trees. Watch the sun rise from the lakeside promenade around Kawaguchiko Music Forest and the Ubuyagasaki peninsula for the best views.

Matsumoto Castle

You couldn’t visit Japan without heading to this beautiful original castle. And when the cherry blossom season is in full swing, its 300 cherry trees enclose it in a sea of pink.

For more information about Hakutsuru Sake, head tohakutsuru.co.jp.

Cherry blossom picnic © cktse, flickr