Ohanami, Japanese picnic under the blooming cherry blossom trees (Garyu Koen, Garyu Park)

Ohanami is the Japanese traditional custom of enjoying the bloom of cherry blossom trees. It is most often done by partying outside, sitting under the cherry blossoms with plenty of drinks and snacks at hand. Japanese people love so much those picnic under the Cherry Blossom trees, called Sakura in Japanese, that the Japanese Meteorological Office releases forecasts for the blooming of Cherry blossoms throughout Japan. The trees usually bloom in the middle of March in the southern parts of Japan and ends in the northern end in early May. It is therefore possible to travel from the the southern division of Kyushu to the northernmost division of Hokkaido (think Sapporo beer) while enjoying a perfect Cherry Blossom bloom in every single city visited! An important fact for environmentally concious folks here, Cherry blossom season is happening slightly earlier every year due to the warming trend associated with climate change.

This year I went ohanami with Ayako, Mama, Ojiisan and Obaasan at the Garyu Koen park in the city of Suzaka. The weather was nice and the location was not so crowded. We ate oden and osembe and drank plenty of sake!

Gaijin-San's theater

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Country: Japan
Area : Chubu area
Prefecture : Nagano-ken
City : Suzaka-shi
District : Garyū
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Japan > Chubu area > Nagano-ken > Suzaka-shi > Garyū

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Gaijin San

Since my better half is Japanese I often have the chance to travel to Japan. I grew fond over time of this magnificent country. I thought of sharing with you some places worth visiting in this little but growing travel guide to Japan. I try to show with images what I can't express with words. I hope you may find here some inspiration! For those who wonder, I chose the moniker Gaijin-San after being called like this by a waitress at a grilled eel restaurant. "Gaijin" means foreigner and "San" is a honorific suffix in Japanese.

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