Cherry Blossom Trip Guide: Tips & Essentials for Cherry Blossom Season

Cherry Blossom Season 2023: Must-Know Tips & Essentials

Nothing can quite compare to the beauty of sakura!

Cherry blossom season is just around the corner! These flowers are arguably nature’s most delicate and gorgeous blooms, painting the sky a pretty pastel pink colour. And because of its seasonality, people all over the world eagerly anticipate their visit to destinations like Japan and South Korea to see them at their peak. 

Planning to catch sight of these blooms this 2023? Here, we round up some must-know tips and essentials for your cherry blossom trip. From what to pack and wear, to when to start booking your flight to photography tips, we list them all to help make your trip a success!

Also read: 10 Best Airbnb Homes & Vacation Rentals in Japan for the Trip of a Lifetime

Must-know cherry blossom travel tips

1. Choose your destination

cherry blossom trip

Image credit: aaron90311 via Canva Pro

Planning your cherry blossom trip starts with a destination. Know which country you set out to see the blooms. While Japan and South Korea are the two most popular destinations for these sightings, there are other places in the world that are home to sakura. Some of these places include Thailand and Taiwan in the Asia-Pacific region, New York and Canada in the Americas, and Germany in Europe. 

Ideally, when picking a destination, you’ll want to explore other tourist attractions and activities there. This way, you can experience more things and get the most out of your trip. But, fret not if cherry blossom sightseeing is the highlight of your trip! 

Also read: 14 Best Places to See Cherry Blossoms Outside Japan and South Korea

2. Know when to plan your cherry blossom trip

cherry blossom trip

Image credit (L-R): Pascale Amez; Erin Song

Timing is everything! Cherry blossom destinations will have their very own peak season, influenced by natural factors. That said, regularly lookout for cherry blossom season forecasts, so you know which months they will be in bloom or for how long they will be at their prime. However, do note that forecasts are still subject to change with factors like rainfall and temperature. But generally, this will give you a pretty good idea of when to book your flight and accommodation. 

For example, cherry blossom season in Japan this 2023 is expected to start towards the latter part of March. On the other hand, South Korea is anticipating peak cherry blossom season in the final days of March towards the beginning of April this year. Ultimately, with the unpredictable nature of this season, you’ll have to make room for adjustments. 

Also read: 16 Best Airbnbs & Vacation Rentals in Seoul for Every Budget

3. Know what to pack and wear

Image credit: Toni Hukkanen

The weather during cherry blossom season is different for each location. It’s important for you to stay as comfortable as possible, while still dressing appropriately for your sightseeing adventures! Opt for comfy shoes like sneakers, and bring a jacket with you in case of colder weather. 

As for other essentials, pack some snacks, water, and a camera to capture the beautiful scenery. Apart from sightseeing, going on picnics is also a popular activity during this season. Do bring a blanket or a mat so you can lay under the flowering sakura trees while sipping on some warm tea. 

4. Expect crowds during cherry blossom season

Image credit: Daderot 

With cherry blossom season being one of the most anticipated times of the year, expect crowds in parks and other locations that have sakura trees. Since popular viewing spots tend to get crowded quickly, aim to arrive early to secure a good. Public transportation may also get packed, so make sure to give more leeway when travelling from one viewing spot to another. That said, plan your sightseeing route accordingly! 

5. Embrace the local festivities

Image credit: Clement

Each cherry blossom destination will have its own way of welcoming the blooms. Major cities typically host cherry blossom festivals — complete with food, great music, and other fantastic activities. Other than flower viewing, take part in these local festivities and observe how locals do it to make the most out of your experience! 

6. Respect the environment and observe proper etiquette

Image credit: Arthur Tseng

Maintain clean surroundings at all times and avoid damaging the trees, as part of respecting nature. Keep in mind that cherry blossom trees are fragile and their flowers are delicate; thus, their beauty is best appreciated from afar. Additionally, stick to designated viewing areas and walking paths. If you’re travelling with children, never leave them unattended. Ultimately, as caretakers of the environment, it is our duty and responsibility to respect these living creations. 

Also read: 12 Habits We Can Quit For More Eco-Friendly Travels

7. Enjoy the atmosphere and remember to have fun

Image credit (L-R): Redd F; baddy abbas

Is it really a successful cherry blossom trip if it wasn’t enjoyable? After all the planning and arrangements you’ve made to ensure that you’re at the right place and at right time, having fun is just as important! Now, go ahead and take pleasure in the majestic scenery that is the cherry blossom trail. 

Also read: 10 Family-Friendly Airbnb Apartments in Tokyo

Cherry blossom photography tips and tricks

1. Time your visit early in the morning or wait until sunset.

As is the usual case with sightseeing, expect that other visitors will quickly fill popular viewing spots throughout the day. If you want to ensure you have the best spot for snapping your pictures, head out very early in the morning (5am–6am), or wait until sundown when visitors start to head back home. The soft light during these times allows for more flattering and natural-looking photos of the cherry blossoms. 

cherry blossom season

Image credit: recep-bg via Canva Pro

2. Use a tripod

A tripod will come in handy for a number of reasons: One, you’ll be able to get sharp images since your camera is stabilised. Two, it’s the perfect tool for solo travellers who wish to snap photos of themselves, too. Lastly, it allows for flexibility and support, especially for those who have a difficult time holding the camera.  

3. Don’t be afraid to experiment

Shoot from a low and high viewpoint for more variety, or play around with different compositions. This is your chance to show your own style and perspective for the cherry blossoms! 

cherry blossom season

Image credit (L-R): Henri Pham; Dylan Sauerwein

4. Check the weather

In photography, lighting is everything! Clear skies can make your photos appear too harsh, while cloudy days can add mood and make your snapshots more interesting. But of course, you’re always free to do some editing to get your desired look and feel, at the end of the day.

Also read: Travelling for the ‘Gram? News Flash — It’s Totally Normal!

That about sums it up for this list of cherry blossom travel tips! We hope these will make for a smooth sailing travel for cherry blossom season. Know of other must-knows that didn’t make it to our list? Share them with us on our Facebook page. If you have witnessed these precious pink blooms, tag us on your Instagram travel snapshot @tripzillamag

Facebook image credit (L): Sanga Park via Canva Pro

About Author

Andrea Larice Yap
Andrea Larice Yap

Andrea is a writer and creative individual based in Manila. This tiny human runs on iced coffee, music and films. You’ll probably catch her daydreaming in a park or jotting down random words to to put in a song. Otherwise, expect her taking a dive in the pool of uncertainty called “life.”