Cherry Blossom Viewing in Miurakaigan, Japan

This past weekend my family took a quintessential cherry blossom viewing day trip. We chose to go to the Miurakaigan area here in the Kanagawa prefecture. Close to our home we hopped on a two separate Keikyu trains, and arrived in at the Miurakaigan Keikyu station adorned apropos in pink and posters of these beloved cherry blossoms by the locals and world travelers.

Keikyu train
Keikyu train; how most of our adventures here in Japan begin.
Seasonally apropos Miurakaigan train station sign.
Seasonally apropos Miurakaigan train station sign.

As you step outside of the Miurakaigan station you see the hanging pink cherry blossom color lanterns and gorgeous, lush, full cherry blossoms in the trees planted poignantly with care near the station and parallel to the street shops.

 

These blossoms greeted us within steps of exiting the Miurakaigan station.
These blossoms greeted us within steps of exiting the Miurakaigan station.
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Seasonal shops set up during the sakuramatsuri (cherry blossom festival/ celebration).
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Beautiful cherry blossoms.
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Hanging Sakura (cherry blossom) matsuri (celebration/ festival) lanterns hang up throughout Miurakaigan from the beginning of March through the sakura season.

 

Hinamatsuri lanterns adorn the streets throughout March in Japan.
Hinamatsuri lanterns adorn the streets throughout March in Japan.

 

After enduring a cold and often windy winter season in Japan, and then are greeted by these beautiful cherry blossoms in the atmosphere of Japan, called sakura in Japanese, you understand why these pink and white blossoms are so beloved in books, art, and Japanese culture. These cherry blossoms signify beauty, fragility, and shortness of life. The arrival of the cherry blossoms, sakura, often occurs in Kanagawa prefecture and throughout Japan from March till April. Hanami, or flower-viewing parties, are very popular in Japan. While many Japanese work on Saturdays, Sundays are the most common day off work during the week. During the month of March this often yields crowds of people in quest to catch a glimpse of these gorgeous blooms.

 

Typical street fair or quick restaurant option in Japan: Udon noodles, with seaweed (nori), garnished with scallions, in a clear like broth comparable to ozoni soup.
Typical street fair or quick restaurant option in Japan: Udon noodles, with seaweed (nori), garnished with scallions, in a clear like broth comparable to ozoni soup.

 

Enjoying udon noodles. Our sons have become resourceful using chopsticks.

 

Full stomachs from eating delicious Udon noodles, and off to enjoy the cherry blossoms.
Full stomachs from eating delicious Udon noodles, and off to enjoy the cherry blossoms.

 

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Japan may be the land of pampered pets; as I snapped a picture of fur-pup I was rewarded by its adorable gaze.

Once you walk through the shopping and restaurant area near the Miurakaigan train station, you’ll start seeing the Sakuramatsuri viewing signs that point you along the path that leads to the Miurakaigan Lake scenic area.

This sign points you to the path and Miurakaigan Lake viewing area.
These type of signs point you to the path and Miurakaigan Lake viewing area.
At first, I felt lost, but stay to the left and you'll continue along this path on the left side of the road and this path will lead you to the Miurakaigan Lake area.
At first, I felt lost, but stay to the left and you’ll continue along this path on the left side of the road and this path will lead you to the Miurakaigan Lake area.

 

As you continue up the hill, you’ll follow a path along a gentle turning road, that leads you to the Miurakaigan Lake area. On the right side of the path, the train tracks are viewable, allowing you to take perfect snap shots of trains and cherry blossoms. These cherry blossoms and yellow blooms along the path are perfect for family photos. We asked several fellow sakura viewers if they would snap a few photos of us all together, and many politely took our picture.

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This is the beautiful scenery of the path you’ll see about 600 meters up the path that leads to the Miurakaigan Lake area.
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Miurakaigan path and lake viewing map.
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The beautiful view of the side of Lake Miurakaigan with the the cherry blossoms in view.
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Pink cherry blossoms in full bloom.
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There is a large garden plot above the Lake Miurakaigan viewing area, and more large garden plots along the path leading to the scenic lake area.
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Sakuramatsuri (cherry blossom festival/ celebration) lanterns.

Following the path it was easy to find our way back to the train station, and then to retrace our train route home. We had a wonderful time out sakura viewing.

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