I love visit Japan during spring season, especially in the middle of April due to an amazing cherry blossom can be seen in every place, such as in the castle, parks and gardens, riverbanks, as well as in the home gardens. Therefore, since early April up until the middle of April every TV station broadcasted in which part of Japan that Sakura is blooming today. In the week end, Saturday or Sunday almost all Japanese went to the outdoor, they hunting to wacth cherry blossom “HANAMI”.  Japanese had a gathering in small or big group, together doing hanami, enjoying cherry blossom blooming while having party, eating, dringking, singing and dancing, or just holding a game.

During in April 2012 I had enjoyed “mankai”, 100% blooming of sakura by holding a HANAMI in Iwakuni City, Yamaguchi Prefecture on April 07, 2012, Traveling Hiroshima – Japan in Kagamiyama Kouen, Saijo City, Hiroshima Prefecture on April 14, 2012 HANAMI – To See Cherry Blossom in Japan – Spring 2012.  and arround IDEC Hiroshima University Campus, Saijo, Higashi-Hiroshima, Hiroshima Prefecture. Visiting Professor at IDEC Hiroshima University Japan, 2012

I have some experiences of hanami party in Japan. You can spend time to see The Four Seasons Album: Four Season Album in Some Countries

 

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Hanami

Hanami (花見, lit. “flower viewing”) is the Japanese traditional custom of enjoying the beauty of flowers, “flower” in this case almost always meaning cherry blossoms (“sakura”) or (less often) plum blossoms (“ume”). From the end of March to early May, sakura bloom all over Japan, and around the first of February on the island of Okinawa. The blossom forecast (桜前線, sakura-zensen?, literally cherry blossom front) is announced each year by the weather bureau, and is watched carefully by those planning hanami as the blossoms only last a week or two. In modern-day Japan, hanami mostly consists of having an outdoor party beneath the sakura during daytime or at night. In some contexts the Sino-Japanese term kan’ō (観桜, view-cherry) is used instead, particularly for festivals. Hanami at night is called yozakura (夜桜, literally night sakura). In many places such as Ueno Park temporary paper lanterns are hung for the purpose of yozakura. On the island of Okinawa, decorative electric lanterns are hung in the trees for evening enjoyment, such as on the trees ascending Mt. Yae, near Motobu Town, or at the Nakijin Castle.

A more ancient form of hanami also exists in Japan, which is enjoying the plum blossoms (梅 ume) instead, which is narrowly referred to as umemi (梅見, plum-viewing). This kind of hanami is popular among older people, because they are more calm than the sakura parties, which usually involve younger people and can sometimes be very crowded and noisy.

Under the Cherry Blossom Tree in Iwakuni City

Under the cherry blossom tree in Iwakuni City with Kintaikyo Bridge as the background

 

 

Kagamiyama Kouen, Saijo City

Kagamiyama Kouen, Saijo City

Inkurain, Kyoto

Inkurain, Kyoto