Late Apr
~
Mid May

Matsumae Sakura Festival

Free

This cherry blossom matsuri takes place in the grounds of Hokkaido’s only and Japan’s northernmost castle.

In addition to the more than 10,000 cherry trees and hundreds of varieties of spring flowers, there is also local entertainment, including locals in a procession dressed as samurai warriors.

It’s not an easy place to get to. From Kikonai Station (the first major station north of the Seikan Tunnel under the Tsugaru Straits that separate Honshu and Hokkaido) you need to take a bus for 90 minutes until you get to Matsumae. From the Matsujo bus stop, it’s a further 10 minute walk to the castle grounds.

Actual dates may vary slightly from those listed.

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