top of page


  • Writer's pictureKyoto Localized

Top 5 Sakura Spots in Kyoto

Free Walking Tour in Kyoto
Photo: Kyoto Sakura | Image Courtesy of Enzo Araullo / Facebook

Kyoto is rich with culture, heritage, traditions and nature. Regardless of the season, the beauty of this city is already impressive. With the spring season coming soon (a forecast of March 26-April 3 for Kyoto), sakura trees will add more charm to Kyoto’s temples, rivers and streets.

In Kyoto, there are many areas you can visit to see cherry blossom and experience hanami. Most of them are under-the-radar and hidden in secret spots which are only known to locals.

If you have time to explore Kyoto, you can walk around and discover them unexpectedly like the photo above. However, given the limited time, you would want to plan ahead and see the best spots for cherry blossom in Kyoto. Below are the must-see places to enjoy sakura in Kyoto:

1. Philosopher’s Path

Free Walking Tour in Kyoto
Photo: Philosopher’s Path | Image Courtesy of Pablo Padierna / Flickr

Enjoy a walk under the canopy of sakura flowers besides a canal. The beautiful sight of hundreds of cherry trees lining up should not be miss! Take a walk at night to avoid the crowd and appreciate the lovely illuminated sakura trees.

2. Maruyama Park

Free Walking Tour in Kyoto
Photo: Maruyama Park | Image Courtesy of Luca Mascaro / Flickr

If you are after an authentic hanami (cherry blossom parties) experience, head out to Maruyama Park for its plenty of trees and hanami places. But the main attraction of the park is the large weeping cherry tree. A more spectacular view is when it gets lit up at night.

3. Kiyomizudera Temple

Free Walking Tour in Kyoto
Photo: Kiyomizudera Temple | Image Courtesy of Espen Faugstad / Flickr

When sakura is complimented with natural beauty and cultural icons like temples, the view is breathtaking. There are plenty of cherry trees in this temple but you can find the largest concentration at the grounds. You should not miss the night sakura illumination during the spring season!

4. Ninnaji Temple

Free Walking Tour in Kyoto
Photo: Omuro Sakura | Image Courtesy of Kumamushi / Wikimedia Commons

If you arrived in Kyoto at a later date of the forecasted cherry blossom bloom, you should not be too sad. You can still go to Ninnaji Temple to find locally cultivated cherry blossom that blooms a week late. It is called Omuro Cherry. You can see many of them on the temple grounds.

5. Arashiyama

Free Walking Tour in Kyoto
Photo: Arashiyama Sakura | Image Courtesy of bethom33 / Flickr

More than 1,5000 cherry blossom trees and can be found in Arashiyama area. That impressive number creates an equally magnificent view of sakura. Depending on the view you want to see, you can go to Togetukyo Bridge, Nakashonima Park, Daikakuji temple or hop on the Sagano Romantic Train where you can pass through a tunnel of sakura.

If you are planning your trip in Kyoto, be reminded that in recent years, there is a dramatic increase of tourists arriving in Japan. They tend to flock these popular sakura spots. It would be ideal to visit them during weekdays and early in the morning before the crowd arrives. Don’t forget to check the latest sakura forecast every now and then as the blooming dates per location change due to the weather.

Spring season is the busiest time in Japan which requires good planning. After spending a day or two gazing at the beauty of cherry blossom, there are still a lot of things to do in Kyoto. One of the interesting parts of travelling in Japan is the embedded cultural meaning of seasons, parks, foods and other things. If you want to immerse yourself and learn more about cultural significance of cherry blossom, its fleeting beauty to the Japanese as well, joining Tours in Kyoto with a local guide should be part of your itinerary. Luckily, Kyoto Localized offers walking tours that covers religion, food, history and culture.

There are many things to do in Kyoto, but you should make sure you get the most out of your Japan trip through joining free walking tour in Kyoto — you’ll get the most interesting tips and secrets like beautiful and peaceful sakura spots as told by a local!

About the writer

Rocel is a believer of living life to the fullest through creating memories with her loved ones – family, friends and self. One of the things she enjoys doing with them is travelling where they get to experience new cultures, new cuisines, new stories to share and memories to look back. In 2018 alone, she travelled to 6 continents which exposed her to the world’s wonders. After all those trips, Japan is still one of her favorite countries because of its unique and rich culture and natural resources. She lived and studied in Tokyo, Japan for one year where she developed deeper love and appreciation towards the country.


Kyoto is the heart of Japan and has rich history and culture. Our walking tours will show you why. On our Walking Tours you will learn about the Old and New Kyoto, tradition, religion, history, food, and culture. Free Walking Tours in Kyoto | Kyoto Walking Tours. Book your free walking tour of Kyoto today.


53 views0 comments


bottom of page