Tokyo doesn’t come much better than in springtime. The city comes alive and welcomes the much cherished sakura (cherry blossoms).
There is arguably no better place to experience this than Nihonbashi. The area is a favorite among Tokyoites during the Nihonbashi Cherry Blossom Festival with popular tree-watching spots, including “sakura scenery” from all of Japan’s 47 prefectures.
Numerous shops will light up in beautiful sakura colors, and along the vibrant and historical Nihonbashi Sakura Dori, an immersive projection mapping show on Naka Dori called “Nihon Sakura Kaze Kaido” wraps you in the authentic feeling of sakura season through light and music, as if the cherry blossoms are snowing down upon you.
Through April 10, experience The Best of Japan Gourmet Tour, at Coredo Muromachi, where you can sample traditional Japanese foods, facilitated by an English-speaking guide. If you post photos on social media you will receive 50 percent off the Tour.
Between April 4 and 10, partons over the age of 18 are invited to wet their whistles during the Nihonbashi Sakura Bar. Eighty stores take part in this highly-anticipated drinking event, with advance tickets selling fast (¥2,900 in advance; ¥3,100 via web on day of event; ¥3,300 at the door). The party then continues with the 4th Annual Nihonbashi Area Sake Walk & Taste Tour (advance tickets ¥2,500; regular price ¥3,000), where you can drink as much sake as you want from across Japan.
Patrons get a rare chance to see sakura in style, with sakura-themed transportation options including the Sakura Bus, Sakura Rickshaws, and, for its maiden voyage, the Sakura Boat.
Nihonbashi Cherry Blossom Festival. Through Apr 10. Nearest Stn: Mitsukoshimae or Shin-Nihonbashi. www.nihonbashi-tokyo.jp/en/sakura2016. Omotenashi Nihonbashi: www.nihonbashi-info.jp/omotenashi
If you are a little unsure what “omotenashi” means and are keen to find out more then take a read of this article on the concept of omotenashi that will help your understanding.