Sakura flower from japan

Sakura, the iconic flower from Japan, a long lasting beauty to the world

“Sakura”, the white-pink cute little flower from Japan that attracts world-wide visitors, is recognized as the national flower of the land of the rising sun. The cultural flower that connects the people and their way of life. What is the history of the flower? And when they would blossom for the visit. Let’s get to know them more right now!


white-pinky sakura
Special thanks for the picture from : Bee Sensei


History of Sakura

Sakura is in the cherry family, it has brown stems and oval-shaped green leaves. The flowers are a combination of white, pink, red, purple and yellow. The shape and colors of the flower depends on the species. Sakura was originally found in southern China, Taiwan, Okinawa and around Japan. It can also be found in other countries such as Korea, the USA, Canada but the variations grown in these countries won’t carry the same scent as the local breed from Japan.


White Sakura blossoms in the front of the building
Special thanks for the pictures from : Bee Sensei


The word “Sakura” (, ) derived from the ancient Japanese “Sakuya” (咲耶) which means “to blossom”. It is the name of one of the goddess from the Japanese mythical tale called “Konoharawakuyahime”  (木花之開耶姫), it says that the goddess came to Earth from heaven and landed on a Sakura tree. There are currently more than 600 Sakura species but only a handful actually originated from Japan. there’s various type of sakura in japan so today we bring some of them to show you which is


Somei Yoshino

80% of Sakura trees in Japan are Somei Yoshino. It has soft pink flowers conveying freshness and relaxation while its soft scent covers the area. The species can be found all over Japan except on Okinawa Island. It usually blossoms in April


Somei Yoshino Sakura Species
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Oshima Sakura

One of the 11 original species in Japan. It has a very distinct scent that is stronger than other species. It has white flowers and can be found in Tokyo, Kanagawa. The species blossoms during April.


Oshima Sakura species
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Yama Sakura

The name implies that it grows in the mountain (Yama is Japanese for mountain). It is one of the 11 original species found in Japan. It has gradient flowers that go from white to pink. Commonly found in Ibaraki, Nakano, Nara, etc. It usually blossoms in April


Yama sakura species
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Oyama Sakura

Another original species from Japan that can be found in the north. The species grows best in colder conditions. Its flowers are bigger than Yama and can be from soft pink to dark pink. Can be found in cold places such as Hokkaido. It blossoms during April-May


Oyama Sakura species
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Kanhi Sakura

This species grows better in hotter conditions such as in Okinawa and southern China. It is way more resilient to heat than other species. Its dark, pink flowers usually bloom in January-February


Kanhi Sakura species
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Edo Higan

Edo Higan is one of the original species from Japan. It can stay strong for more than a thousand years. Its soft pink flowers with a sweet scent blossom in March. It is commonly found in Honshu, Shikoku and Kyushu


Edo Higan sakura species
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Kawazu Sakura

Kawazu is a cross species between Oshime and Kanhi Sakura. It has a distinct flower with dark pink, big pedals. This species usually blossoms much earlier than the others and sometimes it blossoms as long as 1 month between February-March making Kawazu city riverside filled with pinky Sakura


Kawazu Sakura
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The meaning of Sakura

Japanese people admire Sakura. Sakura appears in official documents, money and other objects. There are many meanings conveyed by Sakura, all of them are positive.

  • Harmony, Sakura blossoms and falls at the same time. Ancient Samurai see this as a sign of harmony of the warriors.
  • Inevitable but beautiful. It is very beautiful when Sakura blossoms, but only for a moment. However, the memory will forever stays in the heart
  • New Life. Sakura is the sign of Spring, meaning the new season and new lives that come with it.
  • Success. 

Each color of Sakura means different things as well. Such as

  • Pink means romantic and sweet
  • White means naiveness
  • Yellow means happiness and relationship
  • Purple means elegant and nobility


Sakura blossoms at the Tokyo tower
Special thanks for the picture from : Bee Sensei


Sakura Festival

Sakura is rooted deep into Japanese culture. There is a saying that if a Sakura falls into a rice bowl, the owner will have good luck or good news coming their way. “Hanami” is the Sakura festival where people go out for a picnic under the Sakura tree and enjoy the view. The Hanami festival takes place during March-April each year (Some species might blossom longer into May). The festival starts when the Somei Yoshino Sakura tree at the Sukumi shrine in Tokyo blossoms during warm Spring, the duration of the festival is usually 1-2 weeks only


a lady takes a picture with Sakura


Places to enjoy the Sakura

Sakura blossoms at roughly the same time throughout Japan, but there is only a few places where travelers go to enjoy the Sakura in different atmosphere, such as


Ueno Garden

There are more than 1000 Sakura trees in the garden, and coupled with ease of access, it makes the most popular destination to enjoy Sakura amongst travelers.


Sakura at Ueno Garden
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2. Nagoya Castle

The famous Nagoya Castle with the Sakura blooming in the front is a view that visitors crave for.


Sakura blossoms at Nagoya Castle
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3. Daigoji Temple

Daigoji, Tokyo. The temple has around 700 Sakura trees. It is listed as a world heritage site in Japan.


Enjoy Sakura at Daigoji temple
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4.Yoshino mountain

Yoshino mountain is where Sakura makes a great view. Yoshino mountain is located in Nara region. It has over 30,000 Sakura trees from the bottom to the top. It is one of the most popular places to enjoy Sakura.


Sakura blossoms at Yoshino mountain
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5. Hirosaki Palace

Hirosaki Aomori is the top 5 most popular places to view Sakura blossoms every year. More than 2,500 Sakura trees placed like a tunnel are ready to offer great views and shade to enjoy a quick snack or tea.


Sakura blossoms at Hirosaki
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6.Osaka Mint

The Osaka Mint opens to the public for only 1 week each year. The riverside walkway is filled with Sakura trees and there is a Sakura tunnel that attracts millions of visitors every blooming season.


Sakura blossoms at the Osaka Mint
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Regulations of Sakura sighting

Both Japanese and foreigners come around to enjoy Sakura blooming every year. Rules and regulations are required to keep order and peace. The rules are as follow

  1. Touching is not allowed. Laying a rug or mat over the roots is also prohibited as it may cause the tree or bruise and die more easily
  2. Do not claim excessive space to allow other visitors to have some space to enjoy SaKura as well
  3. Do not use loud noises. Manners are very important as people generally want to enjoy Sakura in peace. Partying or activities that produce loud noises are prohibited.
  4. Litter only at designated locations to keep the place clean


Pink Sakura
Special thanks for the pictures from : Bee Sensei


Apart from so many interesting Japan Festivals. Sakura is considered influential to Japan in general. The beauty that hypnotizes the world is attracting tourists to Japan to see it in person. It is worth planning to visit Japan during the Sukra blooming season. We also have articles about Geisha which is another Japanese charm. Contact Artralux for special offers and trip planning for the best experience.

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