Spring is full of unique Japanese delights! Enjoy the Japanese spring!


In March, the weather gradually becomes warmer and more spring-like. Gradually, the buds of the cherry trees begin to swell and the entire country looks forward to the cherry trees blossoming. Spring is also the season of graduation and the start of school for Japanese people. It is also a season of life milestones and the start of a new life.
In this article, I will introduce the characteristics and ways to enjoy spring in Japan, when the weather is pleasant for enjoying beautiful natural scenery in the open air!

Charms and features of spring in Japan

Spring in Japan generally refers to the period from March to May. It is the ideal season for spending time outside, with daytime temperatures around 20°C (68°F).
Spring, when the weather gets warmer day by day, is a season when the beauty of nature can be enjoyed more. With the transition from winter to spring, the plum and cherry trees start to bloom and the landscape in the city changes constantly. Cherry blossoms in particular are very important flowers for the Japanese people. Cherry blossoms can be seen in parks and along rivers throughout Japan, and many people enjoy cherry blossom viewing. The blooming of the cherry trees is a very important seasonal point for Japanese people, and the weather forecast on TV shows the blooming date of cherry blossoms every day, with the whole of Japan eagerly waiting for them to bloom.

However, the weather in spring is more unstable than in winter, when there are relatively sunny days. There are many days of rain and strong winds, and sometimes storms can be strong enough to blow away the cherry blossoms.

Spring weather precautions

- Climate features

Spring in Japan: temperatures vary greatly, with cooler mornings and evenings and warmer days. March is still cold like winter and requires a coat, but the weather warms up from late March to April. In May, daytime temperatures rise and can be as hot as summer, even to the point of sweating.
It is also important to adjust your clothing according to the region you are visiting, as different regions of Japan have different climates. It is advisable to carry a jacket, cardigan or stole that you can take off and put on easily.

- Beware of hay fever!

Spring is the season of cherry blossoms and rape blossoms, but it is also the season of hay fever.
Hay fever is caused by the dispersal of pollen from trees such as cedar and cypress, which causes symptoms such as sneezing, runny nose and itchy eyes. Pollen is particularly abundant from March to May, so people with allergies need to take precautions when going out.
Wearing a mask is an effective way of dealing with hay fever. After going out, wash your clothes and hair when you return home to remove pollen. Over-the-counter and prescription medicines can also help control symptoms.
Many Japanese people suffer from hay fever. It can be a bit of a tricky season for people with allergies, so please bring countermeasure goods and take appropriate measures when symptoms appear.

Enjoy the spring nature

One of spring's most attractive features in Japan is the dramatic changes in nature. The scenery changes depending on the time of year, so you can enjoy it no matter when you visit, but the most popular springtime is the cherry blossom season.
Cherry blossoms have a special place in the hearts of the Japanese people. The cherry blossom season varies according to region and climate, but generally the cherry trees are in full bloom from mid-March to the end of April. Cherry blossom trees and famous cherry blossom viewing spots are lit up during the cherry blossom season, creating a fantastic sight. Cherry blossom festivals are held in many places, with food stalls and stage shows.
Cherry blossom viewing takes place in parks or along riversides where the cherry trees are in bloom, and people enjoy the beautiful scenery of the cherry blossoms with friends, family and colleagues. A picnic on a sheet under the cherry blossoms is common, and many people enjoy drinking alcohol while watching the cherry blossoms at night.
When cherry blossom viewing, take care to avoid crowds and waste disposal. As many people gather at cherry blossom viewing spots, make sure to check in advance where you can go to view the cherry blossoms. Also, be sure to take all your trash home with you.

Other attractions (plum blossoms, rape blossoms, wisteria, etc.)

Spring is often associated with cherry blossoms, but you can actually admire beautiful flowers at other times of the year as well. The cherry blossom season is short, so it is difficult to aim for the full bloom, but you can still enjoy the Japanese spring in other seasons!

ー Plum blossom ((うめ)):

The plum blossom, which signals the arrival of spring, begins to bloom from late January, despite the cold weather. Dazzling pink and white flowers illuminate Japanese gardens and parks. Because they bloom early, they remind us of the beginning of spring.

ー Rape blossoms (()(はな)):

Rape blossoms bloom in spring with yellow flowers all over the country. Some rape blossoms are edible and can be eaten boiled or stir-fried. The blooming period is from February to May, especially in warmer regions, where they start blooming earlier. Vivid rape fields are a popular sightseeing attraction.

ー Wisteria ((ふじ)):

Wisteria is a bright purple flower that blooms in late spring. The elegant appearance of the stems with butterfly-shaped flowers hanging down from bamboo or wooden wisteria trellises. Wisteria flowers can be seen in Japanese gardens and shrines, and attract people's attention as a beautiful late-spring scene.

Japanese spring & 'food'

In Japan, with its four distinct seasons, seasonal food can be enjoyed according to the season. Restaurants also offer special menus using spring specialities, so you can enjoy spring in your meal as well.

ー Wild vegetables (fatsia sprouts, butterbur sprouts)

In spring in Japan, wild vegetables are harvested in abundance. Typical wild vegetables include fatsia sprouts and butterbur sprouts. Wild vegetables are characterised by their distinctive bitter taste and flavour. Wild vegetables are usually simply boiled and served with salt or soy sauce, tempura or mixed with cooked rice.

ー Rape blossoms (()(はな))

Rapeseed rape is a plant with yellow flowers in early spring, but it is also popular for food and can be purchased in supermarkets in spring. The stems, buds and flowers are eaten as boiled vegetables, with spicy dressing or as tempura.

ー Bamboo shoots (たけのこ)

Bamboo shoots are harvested in spring when the fresh bamboo shoots are above ground. The part of the bamboo with the roots in the ground is cut out and the edible part is cooked. It can be boiled or added to cooked rice. With its crunchy texture and distinctive flavour, it is a typical spring flavour.

ー Strawberry (いちご)

Strawberries are a typical spring fruit. A great variety of strawberries has been developed as a result of breeding, and a wide range of strawberry varieties can be enjoyed, from early- to late-season varieties. Events such as strawberry picking and sweet buffets are also a springtime treat. Strawberry parfaits and strawberry daifuku are popular spring desserts, both Japanese and Western.

ー Seafood (whitebait, sea bream, littleneck clam, asian hard clam)

Spring is also the season for seafood. For example, the fishing season for shirasu (whitebait) opens from mid-March, while sea bream spawns in May. Shellfish such as littleneck clam and asian hard clam are also delicious in spring. These seafood are popular as ingredients in miso soup and takikomi-gohan, and are also used in a variety of other dishes.

Spring events

Spring is also the time for a variety of traditional and unique Japanese events.

ー Hinamatsuri or The Girls' Festival (ひな(まつ)り)

This is a traditional Japanese event held on 3 March to celebrate the growth of girls. The Girls' Festival is celebrated by decorating dolls, praying for the girl's healthy growth and happiness, and eating special foods such as chirashi-zushi and sakura-mochi.

ー Hana Matsuri ((はな)まつり)

The Hana Matsuri is a Buddhist event celebrating the birthday of Buddha on 8 April. At temples, flower halls are built and Buddhist statues in the likeness of Buddha are displayed. Worshippers pour sweet tea and pray for good health.

ー Graduation and enrolment season

Spring is also a time of graduation and enrolment. School and university graduation ceremonies and entrance ceremonies for new grades and schools take place. At graduation ceremonies, girls often wear hakama (a type of kimono), an elegant and colourful attire.

ー Golden Week (GW)

a consecutive holiday at the beginning of May, when many people take around a week off. During Golden Week, many people enjoy travelling and leisure activities, making tourist attractions and hot spring resorts very crowded. Also, hotels and other facilities offer special prices and are more expensive than usual, and you should be careful when travelling during this period. On the other hand, various events are held in different parts of the country and you can enjoy a lively atmosphere.

ー Children's Day

a traditional Japanese event held on 5 May to celebrate the growth of boys. On this day, people hang carp streamers in their gardens or at the entrance to their homes in the hope that their boys will grow up to be brave warriors. They also enjoy sweet flag baths and special foods such as kashiwa-mochi (rice cakes with sweetened oak leaves).


Spring in Japan is the season for enjoying the cherry blossoms and other flowers in the enchanting sunlight. People's faces light up and more and more people walk outdoors. Please enjoy the unique scenery, events and tastes of spring that only Japan can offer!