Omiya Park Cherry Blossoms

Omiya Park Cherry Blossoms in 2023 – Omiya Park is a popular spot for locals, tourists and expats alike to enjoy hanami, cherry blossom viewing. Its proximity to Tokyo on top of the stunning scenery and lively atmosphere is one of the big draws of this annual festival which attracts thousands annually. It is listed in the top 100 places to see cherry blossoms in Japan, one of three such locations in Saitama. Last update: March 19th 2023.

Omiya Park Cherry Blossoms

omiya park cherry blossoms
From the official STIB website

Omiya Park Cherry Blossoms are ranked as the 2nd most popular place to view cherry blossoms in Saitama and the 16th most popular in the country according to Jorudan. Approximately 130,000 people come to view the cherry blossoms in Omiya Park in an average year.

Wednesday March 15th 2023: the trees have started to flower.
Sunday March 19th 2023: the trees really popped today, they are approaching full bloom.

There are approximately 1,000 cherry blossom trees in Omiya park. Generally speaking, they bloom the last week of March and first week of April. However, there are years when they are early to bloom and thus finish early too. It looks like this year is going to be one of those years! Occasionally, they are also late to bloom. During the cherry blossom season, they line the pathways in the park with festival lanterns.  In a non pandemic year, when there is a festival on, there are normally about 180 food stalls in the park…

Cherry Blossom Festival

Omiya Park generally don’t release the festival information until the day of or day before the cherry blossom festival starts. They’ve always been like this, nothing to do with the pandemic! They start it when the cherry blossoms in the park have reached a certain percent of bloom.

In both 2021 and 2020 the cherry blossoms also bloomed earlier than an average year and the festival would have been on from around mid March had it not been for the pandemic. Again in 2022 there was no festival for the third year in a row due to the pandemic. Currently, they are planning to have some festival stalls during the bloom period in 2023 (subject to change). In a ‘normal’ year, they also light up the cherry blossoms on select nights during the season. However, they have already said, that there will be no light up in 2023. Update March 19th 2023: they have said they are tentatively planning to allow some stalls at the park from the 22nd until the 29th.

In 2022 you could sit in the park! Which might sound like a strange thing to say, but believe it or not in 2020 and 2021 you weren’t allowed sit in the park at all! In 2022, they allowed people from the same family sit under the trees. But no parties (food / drink) was allowed. Also, there will were several areas where you couldn’t sit. They also introduced a one way (walking) system for viewing in 2022, which may well still be in place in 2023. However, they will allow people to eat, drink and party in the park in 2023!

Rules during Omiya Park Cherry Blossom season

In all years, no fireworks, bonfires or fires of any sort are allowed during the cherry blossom season. They ask that you don’t secure hanami spots with tarp or picnic blanket in advance. In other words, please only put down tarp or picnic blankets at the time of your hanami. Pets are permitted in the park even in hanami season. You are requested to bring your rubbish home. They ask that you keep maintain social distancing. Lastly, they request that you finish your hanami by 9 pm.

Omiya park Cherry blossoms with children

There are lots of attractions for small children in this park making it a good place to do hanami with children. There is a small zoo, a playground, battery cars and a fairground ride.

More information about the park with kids:

 

Information for Omiya Park Cherry Blossom Festival

Event: Omiya Park Cherry Blossom Festival 2023 大宮公園桜祭り令和5年

Date: tentatively – March 22nd to 29th.

Time: there is no light up in the park in 2023, but they are allowing people hanami until 9 pm.

Cost: free

Venue: Omiya Park, 4 Chome Takahanacho, Omiya Ward, Saitama, 330-0803. (Map below access information)

Access

Omiya Park is close to the Tobu Urban Park Omiya Koen station and about a 10 minute walk from JR Omiya station.

By car it is about 7 kilometers from the Tohoku Expressway’s Iwatsuki Interchange.  Free parking for up to 300 cars.

There are also cherry blossoms in Omiya Dai Ni Park, which is better known for its plum grove.

Official website

2 Comments

    1. Author

      Unfortunately it gets quite crowded these days, I’m lucky that I got to enjoy it for a couple of years without the crowds!

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