May. 09, 2018 UPDATE

Let's visit Kyoto in spring! 5 activities in Kyoto during spring

The weather has warmed up again with the arrival of spring and everyone is in a joyful mood! Let's visit Kyoto and take part in its outdoor spring activities!
Heian Jingu

Flowers blossom in the warmth of spring and Mother Earth has awoken from her slumber! The weather is gradually warming up and makes people want to venture outside. In the season of spring, the cherry blossom is of course at the forefront of everything in Kyoto. Practically every activity revolves around it. In addition to visiting sightseeing spots such as temples and shrines, there are also many activities that you can do during this period. While doing these activities, you can admire the beauty of different cherry blossoms! If you miss out on any event this year, you'll have to wait until next year for another opportunity! So hurry up and have a look at these activities with Vanessa!


1Ujigawa River Cherry Blossom FestivalUji is famous for its green tea. A cherry blossom festival is held by the Uji River every April. Along both sides of the Uji River, pink cherry blossoms bloom, and they are absolutely spectacular! The presence of street vendors selling various snacks and handicrafts makes the whole event even more lively and exciting.
What a pleasure it is to enjoy a boat tour while viewing the cherry blossoms! Because this is such a popular event, we recommend that you book tickets in advance. With the gentle breeze blowing and the mesmerizing view around you, you can appreciate the true beauty of spring!


2Beni Shidare Concert at Heian ShrineHeian Shrine, with its vermilion architecture, is illuminated by light in the evening and looks even more regal and imposing. The famous weeping cherry blossoms cover the entire shrine grounds. It looks like a sea of flowers and its beauty is beyond comparison.
The cherry blossom concert at Higashi Shin’en Garden is a focal point of the event. Although it is a concert, there are no seats provided. People can stroll under the cherry trees while listening to the music. Just looking at the scenery stirs your heart. It is a very elegant event.


3Okazaki Jikkokubune Boat Ride and Night illuminationsFor evening viewing of cherry blossoms, you should come to Okazaki and take a ride on the Jikkokubune boat! From the ferry port near Nanzen-ji Temple, you sail along the Okazaki River and have a clear view of the streets of Kyoto. There are also night cherry blossoms on the sides of the river. The boat ride takes approximately 25 minutes.
The cherry blossoms under the night light look even more beautiful and look quite different from their demure elegance during the day. Tickets can be purchased on-site, but reservations are recommended. There is a boat every 15 minutes. 


4Randen Night TrainRanden is a not a that well known, but very atmospheric tramline in Kyoto. Between two of its stations, Narutaki and Utano, there are cherry trees planted on both sides of the tracks. You can both get off here and see the cherry blossoms and the tram riding by, or you can look at the blossoms from inside the tram. Whatever way you choose to look at the cherry blossoms, it's going to be a unique experience. 
Different from the scenery during the day, the cherry blossoms under this light appear mysterious and almost imposing. The lighting time is from 18:00 to 20:30. Be sure to take advantage of this time and take a ride on Randen.


5OkasaiEvery year on April 10, the "Sakura Festival" is held at Hirano Shrine, where Emperor Kazan once held a ceremony to pray for the prosperity of future generations. Therefore, this customary culture has continued since then. A variety of cherry blossoms have been planted in the area. This is another famous cherry blossom attraction.

At 12:00, a parade involving litter sedan chairs begins. You can see people wearing period costumes walking on the streets. Everyone is scrambling to take pictures. This is a historically significant traditional event. Let's come and join the grand parade!


Vanessa[ Sharing Kyoto Staff ] STAFF DETAIL
In the spring of Kyoto, the cherry blossoms make the city look even more cheerful and lively! This is my first time taking a Jikkokubune boat to view the night cherry blossoms, and I got to see the different styles and aspects of Kyoto. The cherry blossoms at night are so charming. I highly recommend that you make arrangements for this itinerary. However, because there are likely to be many visitors, it is necessary to book tickets in advance or go to the spot early to buy tickets on site. I hope that these spring Kyoto activities will enable everyone to have a spring holiday that you have never experienced before.
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All Things To Do All Kyoto Area
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