This year, cherry blossom season in Japan has started about a week earlier than the average year – many of the sakura that typically bloom in mid-April are already in their peak!
One of most famous spots for seeing cherry blossom is Miharu Takizakura. This is an ancient weeping cherry blossom tree, which is over 1,000 years old. Its name in Japanese 滝桜 means “Waterfall (滝）Cherry Blossom （桜）”, due to the way that the blossoms appear to cascade down the branches of the tree.
Takizakura is recognised as one of the three most imporant cherry blossom trees in Japan, and it will be in full bloom over the next couple of days!
If you are in the area, make sure to pay it a visit! The tree will still look beautiful over the weekend too!
The tree will be lit up in the evenings from April 6th between 18:00 – 21:00, so it is worth visiting it in the evenings too if you get the chance.
How do I know if it’s in full bloom?
Miharu Town, where the Takizakura stands, have a live webcame feed from next to this magnificent tree. Make sure to check it out here.
A couple of my friends visited the spotted on April 5 2018 and said that the tree is nearly in full bloom. Here are a couple of photos my friend took yesterday:
How do I get there?
If travelling by public transport, there are a couple of options.
There is increased service on local public buses that go past the tree. There is also a shuttle bus. The dates of both of these services have been moved forward due to the early blossoming of the tree.
Visiting hours are usually between 6:00-18:00, but they are extended until 20:30 during the light up period.
Increased Service Public Bus
This bus runs between April 7th – April 15th 2018. This bus leaves from outside Miharu Station.
The bus timetables are in Japanese. The left hand side shows the times from the station to the tree. The right hand side shows the times from the tree back to the station. The timetables can be accessed from below:
The timetables also include times written in red. These detail the times of trains arriving & departing Miharu Station. You can get to Miharu Station via the JR Ban’etsu East Line from Koriyama Station. The train from Koriyama Station – a major station – only takes 12 minutes. For information on reaching Koriyama Station, please refer to my post here.
Please be aware that the dates might change due to the cherry blossoms finishing blooming early.
Use the place names below to decipher the bus timetables!
- 滝桜 Miharu Takizakura
- 三春駅 Miharu Station
- 滝桜方面 Heading to Miharu Takizakura
- 三春駅方面 Heading to Miharu Station
Tip: If you want to go and see the sakura in other areas of Miharu Town, get off at Miharu Town Office (三春町役場前) or Chuo Omachi (中央大町) bus stop on your way back from Takizakura.
A 1 Day pass on the public bus costs 1,000 yen per adult. (If you live locally, please note that you can’t use your Noruca Card on the bus)
Free Shuttle Bus
This bus runs between April 7th and April 15th, every 30 minutes on week days and every 15-20 minutes at the weekend. The bus runs between Miharu Town Exercise Park (三春町運動公園）(map here) & the Miharu Takizakura.
The times of the bus are below:
- April 7-8: Runs between 8:00-21:15
- April 9-15: Runs between 9:00-17:00
- April 16-17: Runs between 8:00-17:00
Be aware that from April 9th, the buses only run until 17:00 depsite the Light Up event in the evenin going on until 21:00 ish.
How much does it cost to visit?
Miharu Town asks for visitors to pay 300 yen to visit the tree. This money goes towards the continued conservation efforts towards Miharu Takizakura.
The car park is free though if you’re coming by car!
I can’t make it in time this year. I’ll have to wait til next Spring.
The Takizakura tree looks epic in every season, so don’t feel like it isn’t worth a visit outside of Cherry Blossom Season. I haven’t managed to visit the tree yet, but according to my friends, it really is an awe-inspiring place to visit.
Depending on the angle you view it from, and on the season, the tree can look magnificent, beautiful, sublime, and even slightly creepy (when lit up at night)! Take a look at the photos below to see what I mean.
I can’t wait to visit Miharu Takizakura. It is definitely on my Fukushima bucket list.
Other posts about Cherry Blossom Spots in Fukushima
For more information about Takizakura, see here.
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