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Spring Has Come! Flowers Bloom in Kansai

Magazine

UpdateOctober 18, 2018
ReleaseOctober 18, 2018

If you want to feel the arrival of spring early on, how about seeing the flowers in Kansai, in areas around Osaka, Kyoto, and Kobe? From January through May, the average temperature in Osaka tends to be higher than in Tokyo. Thus, you may be able to sense the warmth earlier in Kansai than in Tokyo. In the suburbs, there are wooded areas and parks richly endowed with nature and such places are recommended for people who love flowers.
◆Daiichi Nagisa Park (Moriyama City, Shiga Prefecture)
Peak season: January to February
The early blooming “Kanzaki Hanana” field mustards in Daiichi Nagisa Park bloom around January. The park will be carpeted with 12,000 flowers and you can enjoy gazing at the snow-capped mountains, the yellow-flowered field, and Lake Biwa all at the same time.
The nearest station: JR Moriyama Sta.
◆Nadakuroiwa Suisenkyo (Awaji City, Hyogo Prefecture)
Peak season: January to February
Awaji Island is often referred to as the “Island of Flowers” because narcissuses bloom brilliantly in winter. Approximately 5 million narcissuses cluster on the sheer cliff. Enjoy the view of the stunning contrast of the lemon-yellow narcissuses that cover the steep slope and the blue of the Seto Inland Sea.
◆Minabe Bairin (Plum Groves) (Minabe Town, Wakayama Prefecture)
Peak season: February to March
This is one of the biggest plum groves in Japan and is said to offer “a view of a million plum trees and produce an aroma that fills the air for miles.” The area is surrounded by the delicate plum fragrance. Various events are held during the blooming season, and you might have a chance to enjoy taking part in a plum seed spitting contest.
The nearest station: JR Minabe Sta.
◆Jonangu (Fushimi-ku, Kyoto City)
Peak season: Late February to early-March
Every season, the Japanese garden “Shinen” in the precincts is filled with flowers. Especially shidare-ume (weeping plums) are gorgeous and you can enjoy Umegae Kagura dance, a sacred dance performed by miko (shrine maidens) holding plum branches. Weeping cherry blossoms are also a splendid sight to see in April.
The nearest station: Takeda Sta. on the Kyoto Municipal Subway and Kintetsu Kyoto lines
◆Expo’70 Commemorative Park (Banpaku Kinen Koen) (Suita City, Osaka Prefecture)
Peak season: Late March to early April
The park has been chosen as one of the “Top 100 Cherry Blossom Viewing Sites in Japan.” Trees are lit up during the blooming period and you can enjoy the fantastical scenery of cherry blossoms at night. The scenery of “The Tower of the Sun” and the full bloom cherry blossoms in combination is very photogenic.
The nearest station: Bampaku-Kinen-Koen Sta. on the Osaka Monorail
◆Katsuragi-san Shizen Tsutsuji-en (Mt. Katsuragi Azalea Park) (Gose City, Nara Prefecture)
Peak season: Early May to mid-May
Slopes of Mt. Yamato Katsuragi, a 959-meter mountain, are covered by red azaleas. During the peak season, it is recommended to hike or take the ropeway gondola up and stay at Katsuragi Kogen Lodge and view the azaleas next morning when there are fewer people.
The nearest station: Kintetsu Ropeway Katsuragi Tozanguchi Sta.
*The information herein is as of September 2018.