Cherry Blossom | How to enjoy Sakura season while social distancing?
The Sakura (Cherry Blossom) season in the spring is one of the best times to walk around and have picnics under the fully bloomed Sakura Trees in Japan. The flower blooms only for about two weeks, which is what makes it so dear and special. There is a common tradition called “Hanami”, which literally means to “view the flower”.
However, this year may not be the ideal time to sit around and hang out with many people due to COVID-19. That certainly doesn’t mean you have to miss out on experiencing this magical season. One way you can enjoy Sakura season without having a hanami picnic or joining festivals: Springtime Food & Beverages!
Almost every coffee shop, supermarket, and vendors start offering seasonal foods for the Sakura Season.
|Sakura Dango or Hanami Dango (花見団子)|
Sakura Dango or Hanami Dango (花見団子)
Made with sweetened rice flour, this sweet is an icon for the Sakura season and the Hanami tradition. The green, white, pink color of the sweet represents the color of spring and summer.
Sakura Mochi (桜餅)
This chewy sweet has a red bean paste inside and is covered with salty pickled cherry leaf has a sweet taste that also can remind you of the spring breeze. Similar to the dango, it is made of sweet rice colored in pink
Sakura flavored soft creams (ソフトクリーム)
Soft creams or soft-serve ice creams are one of Japan’s favorite ice cream types. You can see soft cream being served at almost any popular destination.
Sakura flavored Taiyaki (鯛焼き)
As the name suggests (Baked Sea Bream), it is a fish-shaped cake with various fillings inside and is best when served hot. The most common filling is sweetened red bean paste (Azuki Beans), but there are many special fillings just for the Sakura season. For instance, sometimes the fish itself is pink and other times there are peach fillings, pink custard fillings, and pink mochi fillings.
Starbucks Sakura Latte/Frappe
Japanese Starbucks is known for its seasonal drinks and enjoyed by many around the world. The sweet taste of fruits with a combination of warm milky aftertaste can warm up your body in an instant.
Sakura Flavored Puddings and Desserts
7/11 and other convenience stores are famous for their seasonal puddings and parfaits in the dessert section. As soon as the Sakuras make their way, these sections will be filled with pink and special items for a limited time.
Imagine normal crispy cookies with sakura on top. You actually get to taste Sakura (salt pickled cherry blossom in this case) with a pinch of sparkling sugar on top.
Sakura Themed Burgers at McDonalds
These burgers come in special recipes with eggs and teriyaki-sauce glazed pork patties just for the sakura season and McDonald’s also offers strawberry and chocolate hot pie. Along with these, they also offer Sakura/Peach flavored ice drinks as if it’s a warm welcome for the summer.
Another relaxing way to enjoy Sakura: Walk along local bridges
Many old bridges in the local areas are embraced by Sakura Trees. Almost every local district has streets and sidewalks covered with Sakura Trees and usually these spots are less crowded than parks and popular spots. Enjoy a stroll down the road while sakura petals slowly fall down.
Stay tuned for more fun travel content like this with atta!