Cherry Blossom Viewing Party: Hanami

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Cherry blossoms in Tokyo are in full bloom now.

 

During this season, many people go to parks for a picnic or party outside as they drink and eat under the cherry blossoms.

 

This is called 花見; hanami in Japanese.

 

This custom started Nara era, which is in the 8th century and it was started by the Japanese nobility. The nobles may have first popularised it but nowadays it is done by pretty much everyone.

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Ueno park and Shinjuku gyoen are one of the more famous parks for Hanami in Tokyo.

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Shinjuku gyoen park

Yet, cherry blossoms are everywhere in Japan including most parks, as many have beautiful sights of blossom trees to see, so you can go to any parks nearby.

 

Traditionally we have special lunchboxes and 3 colors of rice cake (mochi) for Hanami.

 

Amazake and other drinks and foods are usually sold at parks as well.

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Unsweeten-sake; amazake
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Selling alcohol, soda, and food in a park for hanami

 

Hanami and this season are our most important period in the year.

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