Mar. 03, 2016 UPDATE
Staff Recommended Places To Visit During Cherry Blossom Season
Nighttime Cherry Blossom Illuminations
Day-time cherry blossoms are not the only enjoyment in Kyoto. Spectacular nighttime events are held during this special time of the year. Several temples as well as attractions host illuminations to bring spotlight to the beautiful cherry blossoms in Kyoto. Its view is different than of daytime. Try seeing the same temple you saw during the daytime in nighttime as well and see the difference. Changing faces of cherry blossom will give in a new insight of how even more beautiful cherry blossoms can be. We recommend you to see the beauty of night time cherry blossoms through these extravagant illuminations we recommend below.
Kiyomizu-dera Temple(March 12 to March 21, March 26 to April 10 / 6pm – 9pm)Kiyomizu-dera Temple is one of the major spots in Kyoto for visitors from both within the country and abroad to visit. But not always do they open up for night time. They are open after the hours only during special nighttime events. The award goes to Kiyomizu-dera for the most number of cherry trees in one place. Totaling up to 1,500 trees within the premise, the view from the “stage” is magnificent. The reflection from illuminating lights and the city lights give off blue hue in the sky, something to notice when up in this temple during afterhours.
Nijo-jo Castle(March 25 to April 17. / 6pm – 9:30pm / Enter by 9pm. / ￥400 per adult ￥200 per child) Check out another face of Nijo Castle during the night time when the cherry blossom trees are lit up during its full bloom. Around 200 cherry blossom trees and 50 different types including Yabenishidare trees bloom in the premises. Take note that entrance is free if you enter wearing a Kimono!
Kyoto Botanical Gardens(March 25th to April 10th / Sunset – 9pm. Must enter by 8pm / ￥200 per adult ￥150 per high school students, Free for middle school students and under)The highlight of the nighttime illumination at Kyoto Botanical Garden is the 250 cherry blossom trees out of 450 trees of 130 different types that are illuminated within the premises. This botanical garden is loved by the locals for its large area size and easiness of access. It’s a place where you can not only see cherry blossoms, but other beautiful plants as well!
Cherry Blossom Tunnel (Randen Night Train)(Late March to Early April / 6pm – 8:30pm / One way ￥210 per adult ￥110 per child) On the line of Arashiyama Electric Tram Railway or Keifuku Electric Railroad, there is a tunnel of cherry blossoms in between Narutaki Station and Utano Station. At night, the lights showcase the blossoms beautifully and the train slows its speed for the riders to enjoy the illumination. The lights inside the train will also turn off while going through the blossoms for a magical moment.
Toji Temple(March 18 to April 17 / 6:30pm – 10pm. Enter by 9:30 / 500 per adult ￥300 per middle school students and under)Toji is a popular spot in Kyoto to visit for its glorious pagoda. Many people visit during the cherry blossom season to see the famous Fuji Sakura that measures 13 meters tall. About 150 Someiyoshino cherry trees also stage the temple. Toji is a perfect spot for taking pictures of cherry blossoms with a pagoda in the scenery.