お花見地図

9 Mar

It’s getting close to 花見 (“Cherry-Blossom Viewing“) time in Japan.

Every spring, during the short time that the pink Sakura (Cherry Blossoms) are in bloom, Japanese people enjoying hanami (“Cherry-Blossom Viewing“).

This ancient Japanese tradition is basically a picnic under the Sakura trees.

Japanese people will often join a “hanami” party more than once during the period the flowers are in bloom…because people will often join a party with friends, another with co-workers, and another with their family.

It’s very enjoyable to sit under the delicate flowers as they fall from the trees in the spring breeze like a pink snowfall and enjoy good food and beer and conversation with friends and / or family.

Sakura is a symbol of Japan and it’s appreciated for it’s beauty and also that it’s gentle and is gone soon after it blooms…like life itself.
Quite a contrast from a strong thorny flower with a long life like a rose.

Anyways, “MAPPLE” is probably the most famous map company in Japan. And on their website they have a 「お花見地図」 (“Cherry-Blossom Viewing Map“).

On this map, you choose an area of Japan from the list on the left (it looks like this):

And then the map will highlight that area of the map of Japan with images of Sakura trees that are color-coded to indicate whether the sakura flowers in that area are “in full bloom”, “just beginning to bloom”, “not yet”, “almost all past”, or “finished”.

There’s a key in the upper-left corner of the site that indicates what the colored trees mean:

If you can read Japanese, you can click here to see the 「お花見地図」 (“Cherry-Blossom Viewing Map“).

Have you ever gone on a 「花見」 (Cherry Blossom Viewing)? Did you enjoy it?
Will you go this year?

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16 Responses to “お花見地図”

  1. Squire Starsquid March 12, 2010 at 8:52 pm #

    gosh, they have a map for that too…? interesting

    Like

    • tokyo5 March 12, 2010 at 11:28 pm #

      There’s also a map that shows where the leaves have changed color in autumn, another for the best places to see X-mas illumination, etc depending on the season.

      Like

  2. Eva March 12, 2010 at 1:01 pm #

    Yes..I was surprised to find out that early spring is still considered very cold..especially for someone who comes from tropical country. :):)
    I am from Singapore! sunny country….

    I was in Tokyo from 8 – 15 February 2010…
    Had such a blast there..I stayed at Tokyo Prince with amazing view of Tokyo Tower..
    I just wished I saw Cherry Blossoms by then..:)

    Like

    • tokyo5 March 12, 2010 at 2:21 pm #

      Singapore’s always hot, isn’t it?
      I grew up in Florida…it’s not the tropics, but pretty warm year-round.
      But I like having four very different seasons in Japan.

      Like

      • Eva March 13, 2010 at 1:12 am #

        Only 2 seasons we get here…hot or rainy days!
        I totally agree with you..I would love to have four seasons..but maybe winter and summer have to be shorter..hahaha..I only love autumn and spring!

        btw..it’s really hot lately…..can’t stay at home without turning on the aircon..but thank God, it was raining since 2 days ago…first time I felt Hallelujah..keep raining please….

        Like

      • tokyo5 March 13, 2010 at 11:18 am #

        Is it already hot enough for air-conditioner there?

        It’s forecast to be warm today in Tokyo…18°C.
        Warm for early March but still need a jacket.

        Like

  3. Eva March 12, 2010 at 1:56 am #

    I visited Tokyo for my first time in April 2008. Straight from Narita, I went to Inokashira Park to join a hanami hosted by my friend’s colleague. It was fun..and I definitely love the ambience. But the weather was quite cold on that day…I didn’t even bring a jacket with me. :):) How I would love to return again this sakura season…but well..I just visited Tokyo this February 2010….so I guess my upcoming sakura trip will be next year!!

    Like

    • tokyo5 March 12, 2010 at 2:08 am #

      Yes, even in early Spring in Tokyo, you still need a jacket…especially in the evening.

      You were just in Tokyo for the second time last month?
      How long did you stay? What country are you from?

      Like

  4. pongrocks March 11, 2010 at 3:28 am #

    We have about 20 cherry trees, it’s always nice to look at them in spring 🙂 If I remember correctly they have all white blossoms. Oh but summer is nice as well… Lots of cherries which just wait to be eaten by me 😛

    Like

    • tokyo5 March 11, 2010 at 11:13 am #

      Those are “Cherry trees” that have white flowers and grow cherries.

      Sakura is translated into English as “Cherry Blossom”…but they don’t grow cherries or any other fruit on them.

      Like

    • pongrocks March 11, 2010 at 9:01 pm #

      ah thats something I didn’t know… But why is it translated as cherry blossom when it doesn’t grow cherries? ^^

      Like

      • tokyo5 March 12, 2010 at 12:01 am #

        I don’t know why.

        In Japanese, they sound similar too…
        桜の木 (Sakura-no-ki) is “Cherry Blossom tree”,
        サクランボの木 (Sakuranbo-no-ki) is “Cherry tree”.

        Like

  5. sixmats March 10, 2010 at 6:09 pm #

    Thanks for the link to the 花見 map!

    http://sixmats.blogspot.com

    Like

    • tokyo5 March 11, 2010 at 1:07 am #

      >Thanks for the link to the 花見 map!

      Sure.

      Like

  6. Anonymous March 10, 2010 at 6:06 pm #

    I am really looking forward to hamami season. It’s hard to think about it today since we got a foot of snow, but I have nothing but fond memories of my nights in Ueno Park.

    Like

    • tokyo5 March 10, 2010 at 6:10 pm #

      Where do you live that you have so much snow?

      In Tokyo, it was raining yesterday…but today became a nice day.

      >Ueno Park

      Actually, I went there today. There were a few Sakura trees in bloom already.

      Like

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