Bunkyo Plum Blossom Festival 2023
Bunkyo Ume Matsuri: One of the Best Flower Festivals in Tokyo
Bunkyo Plum Festival (Bunkyo Ume Matsuri/文京梅まつり) is an annual flower festival held at Yushima Tenmangu Shrine in Bunkyo Ward, Tokyo for a month from early February to early March.
This is one of Bunkyo’s 5 flower festivals as below:
Bunkyo Cherry Blossom Festival (文京さくらまつり) March-April
Bunkyo Azalea Festival (文京つつじまつり) April-May
Bunkyo Hydrangea Festival (文京あじさいまつり) June
Bunkyo Chrysanthemum Festival (文京菊まつり) November
Bunkyo Plum Festival (文京梅まつり) February
Plum blossoms are often compare to cherry blossoms as they look quite similar. Both flowers have various colours from light to dark pink, but the major difference of the appearances between plum blossoms (Ume) and cherry blossoms (Sakura) is the shape of their petals as plum blossoms have a round shaped petal while cherry blossoms have a little splits at the end of the petal.
The blooming season of both flowers are also different in Japan. Plum blossoms usually bloom in late winter to early spring (from February to March) for about a month whereas the cherry blossoms season is from late March to early April (in/around Tokyo) with much shorter period only for 7–10 days.
Plum blossoms have a long history and played important roles in Japanese history, however, they might have been overshadowed by cherry blossoms in modern days as cherry blossoms became one of the most significant and fascinating things about Japan.
But they are as spectacular as cherry blossoms, and there are some advantages about visiting Japan during plum blossom season. During the period of cherry blossoms, it’s extremely high tourist season in Japan, and most of the cherry blossom viewing spots are over-crowded. For those wish to avoid mass crowds while travelling, how about admiring pleasant plum blossoms in a peaceful and serene atmosphere? As I mentioned earlier, the blooming period of plum blossoms are much longer than cherry blossoms, which is another big advantage.
The festival takes place at one of the most important historic sites in Tokyo, Yushima Tenmangu Shrine, and over 300 plum trees in different varieties bloom beautifully. The festival is held for a month from early February to early March as during the period, numbers of special events are held alongside including traditional dance and music performances. Moreover, the light-up of plum trees are available after the sunset.
-Bunkyo Plum Festival
Venue: Yushima Tenmangu Shrine (Yushima Tenjin Shrine)
Access: 2 mins walk from Yushima Station
Date: 8 February to 8 March 2023
Thanks for reading! For more information about special events & amazing things to see in Tokyo, check out the links below, too!