10 Best Spots to View Cherry Blossoms in Kanagawa

Kanagawa Sakura Guide: Where to See Beautiful Cherry Blossoms in Kanagawa

Springtime in Japan is one of the most wonderful seasons. A time for new beginnings after the cold winter, marked by the arrival of cherry blossoms. This is especially true for Kanagawa Prefecture, because of the abundance of early sakura, bringing the beauty and warmth of spring a little earlier compared to other regions.

This allows visitors to enjoy the season for a bit longer as regular sakura varieties start to bloom after the early ones. Which is why Kanagawa is one of the best places in all of Japan for die-hard sakura lovers. This is our selection of places to enjoy the pink blossoms in all their glory.

▽Check this list of best places to see cherry blossoms all over Japan, too!▽

1. Odawara Castle

Cherry blossoms in Odawara CastleOdawara Castle (小田原城) is a national historic site and Odawara City’s main hub for tourism, featuring numerous events throughout the year. But it’s the 300 cherry trees in the park that steal the show and offer a striking backdrop to Odawara Castle’s moat and tower, which was once the seat of power for the Hōjō clan during the Sengoku period. This is one of my favorite because there are lots of kawazu zakura trees, which is a sakura variety that blooms earlier with a deep pink color! 

During the sakura season, the park is transformed into a colorful wonderland, lit up with LED lights that change colors with the time of day. This famous spot draws more than 300,000 tourists who flock to witness the annual sakura festival, where visitors can enjoy events such as kimono strolls and a procession of young children. So make sure to stop by on public transportation, you don’t want to spend your day stuck in traffic!

For more information about Odawas Castle cherry blossoms, check out the following article:

▶︎Odawara Castle Cherry Blossoms with 300 Japanese Old Cherry Trees

2. Kinugasayama Park

Kinugasayama Park during sakura season
Photo by Space key (Licensed under CC BY-SA 3.0) via Wikimedia Commons

Kinugasayama Park (衣笠山公園) in Yokosuka City, a memorial site for soldiers who died in the Russo-Japanese War, is now home to 2,000 cherry trees and one of the prime spots from Kanagawa Prefecture for enjoying cherry blossoms, making it one of Japan’s 100 best cherry blossom viewing sites.

Kinugasa Sakura Festival usually takes place between late to early April. Visitors can enjoy various events during the festival, mostly held on weekends, and take the hiking trail from the park to the 242-meter Mount Ōgusu, the highest peak on the Miura Peninsula. Along the way, you can explore the Kinugasa castle ruins, adding a touch of history to your cherry blossom adventure.

3. Mitsuike Park

Sakura in Mitsuike ParkMitsuike Park (三ツ池公園), also known as the “three-pond park,” is a beautiful oasis featuring 78 cherry blossom varieties, including the famous somei yoshino, yokohama hizakura, and okamezakura. The park’s sakuras bloom at different times, offering an extended period of enjoyment.

Mitsuike Park is located in Kanagawa Prefecture and is one of Japan’s top 100 cherry blossom viewing spots. With over 1,000 cherry trees of various varieties, the park offers an array of bloom times starting as early as mid-February with the cold cherry blossoms. Experience the beauty of the changing seasons at this famous cherry blossom viewing destination.

For more information about Mitsuike Park cherry blossoms, check out the following article:

▶︎Yokohama Mitsuike Park Cherry Blossoms

4. Nishihirabatake Park

Mt. Fuji framed with Kawazu Zakura from Nishihirabatake ParkNishiharabatake Park (西平畑公園) is another one of my favorites for the same reason as mentioned earlier: the vibrant Kawazu cherry trees! They bloom earlier around mid-February, signaling the onset of spring. The view of Ashigara Plain, Sagami Bay, and the Hakone mountain range from the garden is breathtaking, not to mention the spectacular views of Fuji framed by sakura, which is the reason why the park’s viewpoint has been recognized as one of the top 100 views of Mt. Fuji.

These pink Kawazu cherry blossoms not only bring me a lot of joy before the end of winter, but they also have a longer blooming period of about 10 days after they reach full bloom. The Matsuda Cherry Blossom Festival will take place from February 11 to March 12, showcasing the stunning collaboration of pink Kawazu cherry blossoms and yellow rape blossoms, making it a fantastic spectacle.

For more information about Nishiharabatake Park cherry blossoms, check out the following article:

▶︎Matsuda Cherry Blossom Festival

5. Miura Kaigan Sakura Festival

Sakura in Miura Kaigan Sakura FestivalHere’s another cherished location of mine. Sorry for my lack of originality but I just can’t have enough of experiencing the beauty of early-blooming Kawazu cherry blossoms! To top it off, there are also colorful rape blossoms on a scenic 1 km walk from Miura Kaigan Station (三浦海岸駅) to Komatsugaike Park (小松ヶ池公園). The Miura Kaigan Sakura Festival runs from mid-February to mid-March with approximately 1,000 kawazu-zakura trees planted along the railroad, where local products are sold.

If you stand on the overpass near the station, you’ll have a great view of the juxtaposition between the red trains and soft pink flowers. At night, enjoy the fantastic illuminated cherry blossoms that emit a different atmosphere from daytime along the railroad track, making for a spectacular sight.

For more information about Kaigan Station cherry blossoms, check out the following article.

▶︎Miura Kaigan Cherry Blossom Festival 

6. Sankeien

Sakura at night in Sankeien GardenSankeien Garden (三溪園), an 18,000 square-meter classical Japanese garden, is probably one of the prettiest places in Yokohama that brings together the best of  history, culture, and natural beauty. The garden is home to 17 historic buildings from Kyoto and Kamakura, including a three-story pagoda, which offers visitors a glimpse into the past. The park’s cherry blossoms, which bloom around a large pond, provide a picturesque view that’s perfect for strolling. After they fall, the petals form a flower raft that reflects on the water’s surface, adding to the park’s beauty.

Additionally, Sankeien’s teahouse serves up delicious sakura-themed desserts, including handmade dumplings and soft-serve ice cream. During the night event, you can see the garden’s lit-up cherry blossoms and historical buildings. 

7. Hasedera Temple 

Cherry blossoms in HasederaHasedera Temple (長谷寺), known as the “Paradise of the West in Kamakura”, becomes an actual floral paradise from mid-February to late April, when the temple is awash with a beautiful display of cherry blossoms. The early-blooming Kawazu cherry blossoms in mid-February give way to the Someiyoshino and Shidare-zakura cherry blossoms from late March.

The temple grounds, dotted with Buddhist statues, provide a stunning backdrop for the vibrant pink blossoms. Visitors can also marvel at the cherry blossom reflection on Myochi Pond on the lower grounds. 

For more information about Kamakura cherry blossoms, check out the following article:

▶3 Beautiful Cherry Blossom Spots in Kamakura

8. Yamashita Park

Sakura in Yamashita ParkYamashita Park (山下公園) is a place I have a soft spot for, as I love strolling around this park next to the port. This is after all one of Yokohama’s famed attractions, with a stunning view of the sea that’s even prettier during spring with 30 cherry trees, some of which are Someiyoshino and weeping cherry trees, planted in the park. Here you can bask in the pink sea of petals and admire the NYK Hikawamaru and Yokohama Marine Tower in the backdrop.

The park’s beautiful flower beds and rose garden bloom seasonally, but in spring, capturing a unique shot of cherry blossoms with the iconic landmarks is a must. Head to the east side of the park to witness the magnificence of the cherry blossoms around “Sekai no Hiroba.”

9. Onshi-Hakone Park

Sakura in Onshi-Hakone ParkOnshi-Hakone Park (箱根公園), once the site of a former detached palace, overlooks Lake Ashi and offers spectacular views of Mt. Fuji, earning it a spot on the “50 Best Scenic Spots in Kanagawa” list. The Lakeside Observation Pavilion, modeled after the Western-style pavilion of the detached palace, is the park’s symbol.

The garden is well-maintained and features various seasonal flowers and trees, including mame-zakura, oshima-zakura, and someiyoshino cherry trees. From the lakeside observation pavilion, you can enjoy a stunning view of cherry blossoms, the lake, pirate boats, and Mt. Fuji. Free guided tours are available on the fourth Saturday of each month from April to November.

10. Ooka River

Sakura in Ooka RiverIn Yokohama, the Ooka River (大岡川) is another of the best cherry blossom viewing spots. The river area alone is a splendid place for a stroll, now just imagine adding 800 cherry trees to the mix lining the riverbanks! Want to make the most of it? During the Cherry Blossom Festival, there is a “Cherry Blossom Viewing Cruise” that you really really really have to experience. Believe me, cruising down the river, surrounded by blooming cherry trees, is like traveling through a magical tunnel.

Besides the springtime cherry blossoms, the Ooka River is also renowned for its vibrant fall foliage. Don’t miss the chance to see the historic Urafune Aqueduct, among the top 100 bridges in Kanagawa, on this delightful cruise and discover another charming side of Yokohama.

This is the excuse you needed to go and explore some of the best spots in Kanagawa, right? Now don’t just take my word for it, go and experience them yourself!

Here are more beautiful places for cherry blossom viewing in Kanto Region!

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Written by

Photographer, journalist, and avid urban cyclist, making sense of Japan since 2017. I was born in Caracas and lived for 14 years in Barcelona before moving to Tokyo. Currently working towards my goal of visiting every prefecture in Japan, I hope to share with readers the everlasting joy of discovery and the neverending urge to keep exploring.