As the days get warmer and spring rolls around, the optimal period to view cherry blossoms in Japan is also coming soon.
Check our guide here if you’re unsure when and where to see sakura in Japan this year. Otherwise, let’s check out Kyoto, a good destination to admire these lovely pink and white blooms.
Since Kyoto is filled with history and tradition, there’s no better time to appreciate and experience its beauty during the sakura season. According to the Japan Meteorological Corporation’s official cherry blossom forecast for this year, as of 9 February, the cherry blossoms in Kyoto will start to bloom from around 27 March and reach their peaks at around 3 April.
While it’s great to walk around parks or have a picnic under the cherry blossom trees, it may be even more amazing to admire the sakura from the comfort of your hotel room. Here are some of the best Kyoto hotels that provide you with breathtaking views from your room or are near popular sakura-viewing spots.
The Saryō Hassui tea room offers a front-row seat to witness the changing seasons in Arashiyama and the awe-inspiring cherry blossoms along the Hozu River.
The Hanazakura Terrace provides guests with an exclusive and intimate viewing of cherry blossoms during the spring season. You can reserve the entire terrace, complete with a tatami mat and a sofa, where you can take in the scenery while listening to the peaceful sound of the Oi River.
Nearby Sightseeing Spots: Rurikei Onsen, Ruri Valley
Located near Rurikei Onsen, GRAX lets you enjoy the beautiful scenery and fresh air in woodland Kyoto while participating in outdoor activities. The Ruri Valley, where the resort is located, is a particularly special place to visit in spring when the cherry blossoms are in full bloom, creating a picturesque and unforgettable scene.
One of the oldest hotels in the city, Hyatt Regency Kyoto offers the perfect blend of luxury, culture, and adventure. It is a 15-minute car ride away from the cherry blossoms at Maruyama Park and Nijo Castle.
Nestled in the heart of the bustling district of Gion, Yuzuya Ryokan offers a peaceful escape from the city. Featuring traditional Japanese architecture and interior, the hotel is just a stone’s throw away from Maruyama Park, Hanamikoji Street, and famous temples such as the historic Yasaka Shrine.
With over 300 room options ranging from suites to single rooms, you can take in views of Higashiyama’s pink-tinted landscape from the comfort of your room. Hotel Okura Kyoto is also within walking distance to popular cherry blossom spots such as Kyoto Gyoen National Garden and Kamo River, which is connected to Okazaki Canal.
Guest House Ga-Jyun is a budget-friendly traditional Japanese accommodation at the epicentre of the most scenic spots. It is less than a 10-minute walk away from the gorgeous cherry blossom views at Maruyama Park and Okazaki Canal.
Guesthouse Hyakumanben Cross is a highly-rated budget-friendly hotel that provides an inviting and homey atmosphere. It is a 20-minute walk away from the cherry blossoms at Okazaki Canal, and Kyoto Gyoen National Garden which also houses the Kyoto Imperial Palace.
Guest House Aoi Nakamoto is an affordable guesthouse situated in a charming residential area of Kyoto, near the Philosopher’s Path. It only takes a short laidback stroll to reach the Philosopher’s Path, Higashiyama Jisho-ji Temple, better known as Ginkakuji or the Silver Pavilion — not to be confused with Kinkakuji or the Golden Pavilion — and Shinshogokuraku-ji Temple, which are stunning places to visit in spring.
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General info here: Tripadvisor
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And while you are at it, be sure to get your travel insurance!