There are many places in Kyoto where you just can't help but reach for your camera to take pictures. Here are some recommended spots for photo shoots with some beautiful spring flowers.
Located in the northwest mountains of Kinkakuji Temple, Haradanien is known as a great spot to see cherry blossom. The place is also called as "the hidden village of cherry blossom", as it is located in a rather isolated part of the Kyoto city area. It is actually a private property and open to public only in spring and fall for people to see the cherry blossom and fall colors. In this vast park, you can see more than 400 cherry blossom trees of over 20 different species, from late March to the end of April. Once you take a step into the park, a variety of cherry blossom with rich gradations of colors will take you away from reality.
The entrance fee of the park is unique and fluctuates from 300 to 1,500 JPY according to how close the cherry blossom is to full bloom. If the entrance fee is expensive, that means you are in for a treat! So please do not hesitate to enter the park because of the expensive fee. Please take a picture of the overwhelming beauty of the cherry trees.
2. Gion Shirakawa-dori
Gion Shirakawa is in the north of Gion, one of the most famous red-light district in Kyoto. The area is full of Kyoto-like feelings and filled with traditional buildings of old Kyoto such as Kyo-machiya equipped with the cobblestone and the lattice doors. It also is on the national traditional architectures preservation district lists. You can see 40 cherry blossom trees, such as Someiyoshino and weeping cherry trees, planted on the sides of the river that runs along the street. These trees beautifully color Gion in spring. In the blooming season, which usually begins from the end of March and lasts through the whole April, the trees will be lighted up at night. Those beautiful cherry blossoms during the day are beautiful but seeing them at night is quite magical. Geiko and Maiko are often seen walking around in this area, because they go to Tatsumi Daimyojin Shrine in Gion Shirakawa, that is said to help these performers improve their skills of singing and dancing. so if you're lucky, you may be able to take pictures of them along with cherry blossom in full bloom, which would undoubtedly be a great shot.
3. Around Fushimi "Matsumoto Brewery"
Originally established in 1791 in Higashiyama, Kyoto, Matsumoto Brewery moved its base to Fushimi in 1922. The wooden breweries and brick chimneys and warehouses built along Shintakasegawa River are on the national registered tangible cultural property lists. Around this area in spring, the riverside will be filled with yellow canola flowers and let the locals know that spring has come to Fushimi, a famous producing area of sake in Kyoto. There are also sightseeing houseboats on Ujigawaharyu, which is within 15-minuet walk from the brewery, so you can enjoy the beauty of spring flowers planted along the river while cruising down the river on a boat. Let’s take a lot of pictures in warm spring Fushimi.
4. Ota Shrine
Known as the oldest shrine in Kamigamo area, Ota Shrine is the subsidiary shrine outside of the ground of Kamigamo Shrine and is home to about 25,000 water irises that naturally grow in the east side of its compound, Ohtanosawa. The area turns dark and pale purple as these irises bloom in the former half of May every year. The shrine has been famous for the irises since as far back as the 12th century, and has been the inspiration for countless historic artists in Japan. It appears on the waka of a famous waka poet in the 12th century, Toshinari Fujiwara. It is also said that it was the motif of "Kakitsubata-zu" of Korin Ogata, the painter in Edo era, who expanded the family tree of Rinpa. It will not be such a bad idea for you to get inspired by this beautiful shrine and take an artistic picture yourself.
5. Wisterias in Toba Treatment Plant
Toba Treatment Plant, the biggest sewage works faculty in Kyoto, is known as a spot for wisterias. In the compound, there is a wisteria trellis, called "Toba no fuji (wisteria)" by the locals, that stretches over 120m and it gives you the feeling that you are in a tunnel full of Wisterias. During the blooming season (Late April to Early May), the building will be open to public visits for a few limited days of time. The scenery that the wisteria flowers gently swing in the spring breeze under the soft sunlight of the spring in the cloister of the wisteria trellis is definitely an impressive one. The moment of bliss when you are surrounded by a gentle aroma while getting showered with the beauty of purple wisteria flowers will surely be an unforgettable experience of your time in Japan. Please make sure not to forget to take excellent pictures in order to let your family and your loved ones know about the impression.
How was it? There are so many sceneries that you just don't want to forget in spring Kyoto. Capture and take home your favorite moments of your time there!
*Please note that the information in this article is from the time of writing or publication and may differ from the latest information.
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