5 Reasons Why Right Now Is The Perfect Time To Explore This Cultural Trendy Destination

Fujiyoshida, Japan at Chureito Pagoda and Mt. Fuji in the spring with cherry blossoms.

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The world may be full of epic travel destinations, but one Asian country in particular seems to be stealing the spotlight this year.

Multiple recent reports examining travel trends reveal Japan to be one of the most coveted destinations of 2024.

Fujiyoshida, Japan at Chureito Pagoda and Mt. Fuji in the spring with cherry blossoms.

It’s easy to understand why Japan has captured the interest of so many travelers; this trendy country is abundant with rich cultural sites and traditions, breathtaking natural beauty, and delicious foods.

And while each time of year brings its own unique offerings, spring brings Japan to life with contagious energy and pastel colors you won’t find in other seasons.

It is Sakura (Cherry Blossoms) Season

castle-and-boat-on-river-with-cherry-blossoms-in-Japan

Sakura season transforms this trendy country into a landscape of pastel pinks that will make you feel as though you’ve stepped into a fairytale.

The ideal dates to see the cherry blossoms at their best will vary depending on what part of the country you are in.

In general, the blooms first peak in the south, and then the color moves north; early to mid-April is the ideal time to catch the sakuras at their best.

The Japanese Meteorological Society recently forecasted the following iconic destinations would be in full bloom by the following dates–Osaka: 4/2, Tokyo: 3/30, Kyoto 4/1.

If you want to be extra prepared, you can download the Sakura Navi app here for up-to-date forecasts and the most relevant information on bloom times and best viewing spots near you.

Some of the best places to view blooms are Mount Yoshino in Nara,  Philosopher’s Path in Kyoto, Shinjuku Gyoen, Tokyo, Himeji Castle in Hyogo, and Hirosaki Castle Park, Aomori.

Ideal Weather

Cherry blossoms or Sakura and Mountain Fuji at the river

Japan experiences the traditional four seasons, with its rainy season falling in June and July.

If you want pleasant weather and to visit when the landscapes are colorful and lush, spring is the perfect time.

Whether you are climbing this country’s mountains, wandering Tokyo’s streets, or exploring Kyoto’s temples, you’ll be much more comfortable visiting in spring when the days are still mild.

Japan’s summers are notoriously hot and humid, bringing unpredictable rains and temperatures as high as the upper 90’s in Tokyo.

In contrast, daily temperatures in spring fall in the comfortable 50-70 degree range, and skies are clear with plenty of sun.

Festival Season

Karakuri-doll-on-ornate-float-at-Takayama-Festival-in-Japan

Visiting a country during a national holiday or local festival is an experience like no other.

Celebrating amongst the locals on crowded streets, feeling the pulsing energy and excitement, and witnessing colorful, culturally rich traditions come alive can be one of the most fulfilling travel experiences.

As winter thaws and the sunshine returns, the country comes alive with a variety of matsuri or festivals.

You’ll find Cherry Blossom festivals all over the country celebrating the sacred flower throughout its bloom season in April.

One of the most beautiful of the matsuri is the Takayama Festival, which takes place in the Gifu prefecture from April 14th-15th.

The elaborately designed wooden floats and skilled mechanical doll performances are among the highlights of this colorful celebration.

Flights

Cityscape in Japan

While the cheapest time to fly to Japan is during its off-seasons, summer or winter, you can still find some good deals for spring if you book sooner rather than later.

We found non-stop flights from Los Angeles to Tokyo right in time for peak cherry blooms that cost around $1600 for a 2-week trip at the beginning of April.

For our Midwest based readers, a non-stop round trip ticket from Chicago to Tokyo for a 10 day trip departing March 30th would cost around $1800.

If you’re up for a 2 hour layover on both flights, we found a roundtrip 10 day trip from New York City to Tokyo for just $1495 also departing on March 30.

Seasonal Cuisine

Street-Food-Being-Cooked-by-Japanese-Men-In-Osaka

While there’s no wrong time of year for sampling Japanese cuisine, different times of the year bring a different availability of ingredients.

Japanese cuisine and the availability of certain dishes change to align with the seasons, as the country’s Buddhist roots bring an appreciation for seasonality and alignment with nature.

The Sakura blossoms and leaves aren’t only beautiful, but they are also edible!

The arrival of spring will bring a host of unique sakura-themed treats and drinks like sakura mochi.

The spring months are the ideal time to visit if you want to sample springtime dishes featuring seasonally fresh seafood, and Takenoko, or bamboo shoots.

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This article originally appeared on TravelOffPath.com

Opinions expressed here are the author’s alone, not those of any bank, credit card issuer, hotel, airline, or other entity. This content has not been reviewed, approved or otherwise endorsed by any of the entities included within the post.


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