Spring finally came to Japan after what seemed to be an endless winter.
The temperature has started to warm up, and you no longer have to put on so many layers of clothing just to check your mail.
Of course, the spring season also means hay fever for many, and this causes many people to miss school or work.
The most exciting thing about spring, however, is without question the cherry blossoms, which are due to start blooming any day.
The cherry blossoms attract shutterbugs (or photography enthusiasts) from all over the world who like to document the beautiful but short-lived flowers in all their glory.
And the cherry blossoms are quite glorious, indeed. Just Google the words “cherry blossoms” and look at all the beautiful pictures on display. Traveling to Kyoto with your camera in tow will offer many incredible opportunities for memorable photographs.
Even though Tokyo is a much more modern city, it too provides a lot of chances to take nice photos.
Meguro River near Naka-Meguro Station is just one such example.
Every year it attracts hundreds (perhaps thousands) of onlookers who take carefully-staged photographs or just quick selfies to post on Facebook.
Either way, it’s a popular destination for those who want to experience hanami firsthand.
Spring in Japan means much more than simply getting to leave your coat at home. It’s hard to think of a more anticipated event in Japan that is shared and enjoyed by everyone, regardless of his/her nationality.
Sure, there’s Christmas, and Halloween is starting to play catch-up, but cherry blossom season defies cultural and language boundaries in a way that no Western holiday will ever be able to do.
After all, who doesn’t enjoy beauty?
So, if you’re in Japan, dust off your camera (or smartphone) and start researching a place near you to take some pictures.
If you’re not in Japan, well, get ready for all the pictures coming your way.
There will be a lot of them, and chances are they will almost all be wonderful.
That’s just how cherry blossoms are.