Sakura blossoms are a big deal in Japan. The pink blossoms are all over Japanese life with mentions in the media, in anime, and even fashion and food. It seems every year there is some food item you can buy that is sakura flavored and colored pink to add to the experience of the cherry blossoms. So you can expect that when the time of year comes of the actual blossoming of the sakura that one of the biggest festivals is going to do things right.
There are plenty of cherry blossom (or sakura as they are also called) festivals in Japan at the beginning of the year. But one of the biggest is held in Chiyoda City. The city is a central hub of not only Tokyo but all of Japan. It houses the National Diet (think Japanese Senate) building as well as the Imperial Palace for the Emporer of Japan and a moat! Not many places can say that.
And they are planning a heck of a way to celebrate the beautiful blossoms.
The big festival has employed the help of some of the characters from the classic anime Cardcaptor Sakura in its advertising. The series and the characters were created by a group called Clamp. Clamp is a group of manga (Japanese comics) artists that got together in the 1980s and amongst their many titles they produced over the years was Cardcaptor Sakura in 1996. The story of a young girl on a mystical journey to collect spiritual cards and fight monsters became a smash hit and with main character Sakura Kinomoto coming back for a new anime series Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card debuting in January of this year, it makes the perfect advertising mascot for a festival for the Sakura that gave the popular character her name.
The festival itself is planning to truck in over 260 cherry trees to create a 700-meter long walk path surrounded by cherry blossoms. The trees are also going to be lit up so that the millions of tourists that are expected to be at the festival will be able to stay well into the night enjoying one of the most beautiful flower blossoms that nature can provide.
Different goods with the animated characters from the series on them will include bags, bottled water (700 meters is a bit of a walk), cookies, and other goods will be available during the festival with special prizes being awarded as well for those who want more from Sakura and her friends.
The festival itself takes place around late March until early April. Can’t exactly be too specific on time when you are dealing with the blooming of blossoms and Mother Nature. If you are lucky enough to be in that part of the world during that time, check ahead with the city or your travel agency for what days the festival is opening and closing.
And if you are not in Japan and interested in the newest adventure of Clamp’s Cardcaptor Sakura with Cardcaptor Sakura: Clear Card, it is available on Crunchyroll with new episodes arriving subtitled in English every Saturday night, Eastern Time.
So if you want to check out one of the most beautiful of sites in not only Tokyo but all of Japan, or if you are just a major Clamp Fan who wants every bit of their most popular characters and shows the group have ever produced, then check out the amazing Chiyoda City Sakura festival happening in late March.