100 Places to See Cherry Blossom in Japan: Tohoku

Part six features the Tohoku prefectures in all their movie-star glory. Blooming arrives a little later here - typically mid-April.

Japan’s most poetic landscape knows a thing or two about creating the perfect cherry blossom scene. Full of spots that have featured in TV dramas and movies, this is where you can relive that Memoirs of a Geisha ending again and again.

Tohoku

Fukushima (April 10 ~)

Hanamiyama 

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A must-go location for those who want to enjoy more than just cherry blossoms. Experience the ultimate spring with the scenery of over 70 types of flowers, including someiyoshino, toukai cherry blossoms, and ume (plum) and peach blossom trees.

Get there

10 minutes walk from Hanamiyama stop, bus leaving JR Fukushima station

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Kasumigajo Park

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Over 2,500 cherry blossoms bloom near the former Nihonmatsu castle. The name Kasumi, which translates to mist or fog, indicates how the cherry blossom trees bloom so fully that they fill the sky.

Get there

20 minutes walk from JR Nihonmatsu station

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Iwate (April 19 ~)

Takamatsu Park

Takamatsu Park is listed among the top 100 sakura spots in Japan, but what makes it so special is the way cherry blossom trees surround the Takamatsu lake. This makes it perfect for a leisurely promenade along the water – even better at night when, during the festival, lanterns are lit up.

Get there

15 minutes by bus headed to Matsuzono Eigyojo from JR Morioka Station, get off at Takamatsu no Ike-Guchi

More info

Kitakami Tenshochi Park

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Listed not only in the top 100 sakura spots ranking, Kitakami Tenshochi also has its name in the top three sakura spots out of Aomori, Iwate, and Akita. Over two kilometers of 500 cherry blossom trees stretches across the river, in addition to the 10,000 cherry blossom trees in the park itself. During the Sakura Festival, carp flags are hung up above the river.

Get there

20 minutes walk from JR Kitakami station/15 mins by bus headed to Esashi Bus center, or to Kumazawa from JR Kitakami station get off at Tenshochi

More info

Miyagi (April 10 ~)

Hitome Senbon Zakura

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Tohoku’s most postcard-perfect sakura spot has got to be this. Also known as the “Hitome Senbon Zakura” for it’s eight kilometer-long tunnel of cherry blossom trees. Out of the 1,200 cherry blossoms, one third are over 80 years old.

Get there

3 minutes walk from JR Oogawara station

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Funaoka Joshi Park

Perhaps one of the most popular cherry blossom spots in the Tohoku region, the Shibata Sakura Festival at Funaoka Joshi Park attracts over 200,000 visitors each year. Enjoy the view atop the mountain where the Funaoka Peace Bodhisattva Statue stands.

Get there

15 minutes walk from JR Funaoka Station

More info

Akita (April 17 ~)

Mato Park 

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Listed among the top 100 cherry blossom places in Japan, Mato park was built to commemorate the enthronement of the Taisho Emperor. The park is surrounded by apple farms, filling the air with the fresh scent of spring. Around 2,000 cherry blossom trees bloom from April to May.

Get there

20 minutes by bus from JR Jomonji station headed to Higashinaruse. Get off at Matobashi, 5 mins walk from there.

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Kakunodate

At the famous Kakunodate in Akita the cherry trees are as old as 300 years, having been imported from Kyoto by samurai families that lived in the area. This beautifully-preserved historical district is the perfect spot to appreciate spring beauty while stepping back in time to samurai days.

Get there

A short walk from JR Tazawako Line Kakunodate Station

More info

Yokote Park

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A cinematic sakura spot, where over 3,000 cherry blossom trees bloom bright around the former Asakura castle. Mostly someiyoshino cherry blossoms, the delicate pink colors bring many visitors annually to the park all clamoring to see the scenery from the observation deck.

Get there

30 minutes by walk from JR Yokote station

More info

Yamagata (April 14 ~)

Matsugasaki Park

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Over 200 cherry blossom trees bloom throughout the remains of Yonezawa Castle. The trees are as old as 100 years, and the scenery of the nighttime light up is, in a word, enchanting.

Get there

10 minutes by bus from JR Yonezawa station to Shirabu Onsen, get off at Uesugi Jinja Mae; or by bus to Onogawa onsen, get off at Matsugasaki, 3 mins walk

More info

Tsuruoka Park

Located in the center of Tsuruoka city, Tsuruoka park was built where the impressive Tsurugaoka Castle formerly stood. Over 700 cherry blossom trees beautifully spring from the remains of the castle walls – scenery that has appeared in many novels and movies.

Get there

10 minutes by bus from JR Tsuruoka station to Yunohama Onsen or Atsumi Onsen, get off at Shiyakusho Mae.

More info

Eboshiyama Park

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Chosen among the top 100 must-go sakura spots, at Eboshiyama park the trees are 120-years-old, and there are over 1,000 cherry blossom trees of 25 different kinds. Over 120 thousand people visit annually – can’t think why.

Get there

5 minutes by car or 25 minutes on foot from JR Akayu station.

More info

Aomori (April 24 ~)

Hirosaki Castle Park

Approximately 2600 cherry blossom trees decorate the picturesque surroundings of Hirosaki castle – one of the oldest castles in the Tohoku region – turning the moat a bubblegum pink. Enjoy not only the beauty of cherry blossoms, but also the food stands, where you can purchase fare straight from the Tsugaru region such as ginger miso oden and black konjac. At nighttime, you can marvel at the cherry blossom trees lit up in bright lights. Great for a date? We think so too.

Get there

20 minutes by walk from Hirosaki station bus terminal/10 minutes by 100 yen bus going around Dotecho

More info

Ashino Park

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A truly historical park famous for the over 2,200 cherry blossom trees plus more. Ashino is also famous for its links to the literary genius Osamu Dazai, which many may know for his masterpiece Ningen Shikkaku (No Longer Human).

Get there

It’s a short walk from Tsugaru Tetsudo Ashino Park station.

More info

Shiroyama Park

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One of the most popular sakura spots in the Aomori area, around 1,600 cherry blossom trees brighten up this attractive park in a vivid pink hue in spring. The park is built around Sannohe Castle, which played an important role during the Warring States Period. History and hanami in one.

Get there

10 minutes by bus (Nambu bus to Sannohe Eigyojo) from Aoimori Tetsudo Sannohe station, get off at Sannohe Machiyakuba Mae, 10 minutes walk.

More info

Hachinohe Park

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At one of the largest parks in Aomori (its size is worth eight Tokyo Domes), visitors can enjoy around 2,000 cherry blossom trees of different kinds. Not only is the park popular for cherry blossoms, but also for its floral gardens, a small amusement park with a ferris wheel, animal park, and more.

Get there

20 minutes by bus leaving JR Honhachinohe Station to Kodomono Kuni Iriguchi

More info