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Beyond Blossoms: 5 Must-do spring activities in Japan

Beyond Blossoms: 5 Must-do spring activities in Japan

As winter's chill gives way to the gentle embrace of spring, Japan bursts into a kaleidoscope of colour and activity. From the delicate cherry blossoms adorning parks to the vibrant festivals celebrating the season's renewal, there's no shortage of enchanting experiences awaiting visitors in the Land of the Rising Sun. Whether you're seeking serene moments of contemplation amidst blooming gardens, exhilarating outdoor adventures, or indulgent culinary delights, Japan offers a treasure trove of fun activities to partake in during the spring months. Here are five springtime activities to check out during your visit.


Strawberry picking

It's strawberry season! (Image credit: photoAC)


Spring in Japan, especially during the transition period between winter to spring, heralds the arrival of vibrant strawberry fields, inviting visitors to partake in the joyous tradition of strawberry picking, known as ichigo-gari (いちご狩り). Across the country, lush farms open their doors to eager berry enthusiasts, offering rows upon rows of plump, ripe strawberries ready for harvesting. 


From the iconic red jewels of Tochigi and Shizuoka Prefecture to the scenic fields of Hokkaido, this seasonal pastime promises not only the pleasure of gathering sweet treasures but also the chance to savour the essence of spring in every juicy bite.


Clam digging

Clam-digging is a marine activity with spring in Japan. (Image credit: photoAC)


In Japan, digging for clams or clam-hunting (潮干狩り shiohigari) is a cherished springtime tradition that offers both leisure and gastronomic delights. As the weather warms, coastal areas become popular spots for this activity. Enthusiasts young and old flock to the designated shores armed with buckets and shovels, eagerly scouring the sand for these delectable treasures such as asari clams (アサリ) and razor shells (マテガイ). 


(Image credit: photoAC)


Beyond the thrill of the hunt, clam digging presents an opportunity for families and friends to bond amidst the tranquil seaside setting, culminating in a satisfying feast of fresh seafood enjoyed together.


Spring festivals

Narita Drum Festival (Chiba Prefecture).jpg (613 KB)

Narita Drum Festival in Chiba Prefecture. (Image credit: (公社) 千葉県観光物産協会)


This season brings forth a tapestry of vibrant spring festivals, each weaving its own tale of tradition and celebration. Among them, the Omihachiman Sagicho Festival in Shiga Prefectures stands out, a boisterous extravaganza of floats parades and spirited street performances. In Iwate, the Fujiwara Spring Festival captivates with its elegant procession through historic streets, showcasing ancient court rituals. Meanwhile, the Narita Drum Festival in Chiba immerses viewers with their pulsating sounds, intricate rhythms, and dynamic choreography, reflecting Japan's rich musical heritage. These diverse celebrations offer a glimpse into Japan's rich cultural heritage beyond cherry blossoms.


Seasonal gourmets

Bamboo shoots or takenoko are one of spring's seasonal vegetables. (Image credit: photoAC)


Spring brings forth an exquisite array of seasonal delicacies, tantalising taste buds with its fresh flavours and vibrant colours. From the succulent bamboo shoots (竹の子 Takenoko) of early spring to the delicate sakura mochi, each dish embodies the essence of the season. Tender fiddlehead ferns, known as kogomi (屈み), grace tables alongside fragrant mountain vegetables like sansai (山菜), while the arrival of spring heralds the indulgence in creamy strawberry desserts and savoury grilled river fish. These culinary delights reflect Japan's deep connection to nature, offering a feast for both the palate and the soul.



Camping with a floral backdrop. (Image credit: Pakutaso)


Spring camping in Japan offers a rejuvenating escape into nature's embrace. As the landscape awakens from winter slumber, lush forests and serene lakes beckon outdoor enthusiasts. From Hokkaido's majestic wilderness to the scenic beauty of Mount Fuji, there's a camping spot for every adventurer. Roasting marshmallows under starlit skies, hiking amidst cherry blossoms, and waking up to the symphony of birdsong are just a few of the unforgettable experiences awaiting campers in Japan's captivating springtime wilderness.


Experience the magic of spring in Japan, where cherry blossoms, vibrant festivals, and culinary delights await. Indulge in the joy of strawberry picking and clam digging, savour seasonal delicacies, and immerse yourself in cultural celebrations. Don't miss the picturesque hanami picnics beneath blooming sakura trees, offering moments of serenity amidst nature's beauty. Plan your visit now for an unforgettable springtime adventure in the Land of the Rising Sun. For more, read this article on our sister website JAPAN RAIL CLUB for more spring things to do, especially between April to May.


Header image credit: Pakutaso & photoAC


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