Spring brings a new life into Japan’s fields and mountains—and it’s not just the sakura coming into bloom. Skip the tourist crowds but still see rare and stunning flowers filling the Japan landscapes. Here’s a list of some of Japan’s most beautiful springtime flower destinations.
Wisterias at the Kawachi Fuji Gardens
A walk through the Kawachi Fuji Gardens’ famed Wisteria Tunnels is something right out of a children’s fairytale. The tunnels spiral out in long, drawn out paths with over 20 different species of wisterias in shades of white, blue, pink, and purple. With the flowers growing in long threads over low tunnel ceilings, you’ll feel as if you’ve been swallowed by a spring time paradise.
Shibazakura by Mt. Fuji
Take part of one of Japan’s largest and most iconic flower festivals of the year: the Fuji Shibazakuri Festival. Catch over 800,000 shibazakura flowers (or ‘Moss Phlox’ flowers) growing by the fields, with variations named ‘Oakington Blue-Eyes,’ ‘Autumn Rose,’ and ‘Scarlet Frame. —all with the iconic Mt. Fuji in the backdrop.
Azaleas at Mt. Minfune, Tokeo City
If you’d like to avoid the cherry blossom chasing crowds of Kyoto and Osaka, make your way instead to Mt. Minfune in Takeo City. Once spring brushes the shy mountain, the Mifuneyama Rakuen Park explodes with color as the azaleas, wisterias, and spring maples come into full bloom. The park sprawls over 150,000 square meters, with over 5,000 azalea bushes and sakura trees, with tons of walking paths you’ll get lost in for hours. If you’re in Takeo in early spring where you can still feel the harsh winter cold, take short detour to the Takeo Onsen.
Nemophila (Baby Blue Eyes) at the Hitachi Seaside Park, Ibaraki
There’s a complicated scientific explanation on blue is such a rare color among flowers. But if you just want to marvel at a field of stunning, rare blooms (sometimes called ‘Baby Blue Eyes’), visit the hills of Hitachi Seaside Park in Ibaraki. Drink in the sight with the ocean on one side, and a bell tolling on top of the hill.
Wildflowers at Hokkaido
Hokkaido’s unique climate makes it home to some of Japan’s rarest and most beautiful alpine flowers. Here you’ll find entire hills covered in vivid stripes of wild flowers: tulips, lavenders, wild orchids, daylilies, and more. Hokkaido comes to life as soon as the harsh winter ends. Be sure to visit the Primeval Flower Garden, where over 40 kinds of wild flowers grow completely on their own.