kikushidare Takao Sakura park

Takao Sakura Park, as the name implies, is a cherry blossom park in Kitamoto City, Saitama Prefecture. It is also a popular spot for watching the sunset. Perched on the hill overlooking the Arakawa river, you can see as far as Mt Fuji on a clear day. Between February and April a variety of cherry blossoms bloom in turn. During the period of the Somei Yoshino (the most famous variety) there is a two day festival. Information for the Kitamoto Cherry Blossom Festival in 2024 is included in this post.

Takao Sakura Park

There are approximately 200 cherry blossoms in Takao Sakura Park. In total there are 30 different varieties of sakura in the park. As such each variety has only a few trees each. You can see cherry blossoms in the park from the end of February to April. The park has some rare sakura. And they are currently trying to cultivate a kabazakura. Presumably the branch was taken from Ishito which is currently the only kabazakura in the world.

mt fuji and magnolia takao sakura park
A magnolia with Mt Fuji in the background. Takao Sakura Park is a popular place to watch the sunset

It is a relatively small park with no playground equipment or facilities other than toilets. However, it is very picturesque in spring. And even out of season with the view of the city sprawling out past the Arakawa with the mountains (including Fuji san) in the background. It is also the main site of the Kitamoto Cherry Blossom Festival.

End of February / Early March

The Kawazuzakura are the first to bloom in the park in spring. Followed shortly after by the Sato Nishiki, which is an actual Cherry (as in the fruit) tree. They normally bloom end of February to early March. There are a couple of Kawazuzakura that typically bloom early March.

Okanzakura

After the Kawazu zakura the Okanzakura bloom in the park. There are a cluster of Okanzakura at the west end of the park. They typically bloom in the second half of March. These Okanzakura are a shade of white with pink in the center. Thus, they look pink in photos! But if you want to see deep pink (angyo) kanzakura you can see them in Sakado city.

Furthermore, there are two stunning kikushidare in the park, pictured above. Generally once the kanzakura start to bloom kikushidara in the park and the Edohigan in the neighboring Amidado Temple bloom soon after. Also, there are a couple of large magnolia trees which bloom around the same time too.

Prime viewing

The park is particularly picturesque from the third week of March to early April when several varieties of cherry blossoms bloom together. During that period they have a cherry blossom festival for one weekend:



Don’t miss! Other cherrry blossom spots in Kitamoto

Kitamoto has some really excellent cherry blossom viewing:

Kitamoto has several notable cherry blossom spots. Including one of the five great sakura of Japan. Others include the Jougaya Embankment Cherry Blossom Bank, the Kitamoto Campfield and Outdoor Activity Center and Kitamoto Children’s park. Also, if you are visiting early in spring, you can see kawazuzakura (early bloomers) nearby on the Kamakura Kaido and also at Takao Hikawa Shrine.To name, but a few! There is also a cherry blossom of interest in Hokoji. It is a weeping cherry blossom. The cherry blossom was grown from a branch of another of Japan’s five great cherry blossoms – the Miharu No Takizakura in Fukushima.

A short drive from the Takao Sakura Park in the neighboring Yoshimi Town, you can see rapeseed and cherry blossoms blooming together at Yoshimi Sakura Tsustumi. They typically bloom the end of March to early April.


Takao Sakura Park Information

Kitamoto Takao Sakura Park
Address:6 Chome-350-1 Takao, Kitamoto, Saitama 364-0034. View on Google Maps.
Phone:+81485914703
Hours:24 hours
Cost:Free
Online:Official web page on the Kitamoto City website

Access

It takes about 35 minutes to walk from JR Takasaki Line’s Kitamoto Station to the park. You can also get a bus from the station which takes about 10 minutes. Get the bus bound for the Saitama Health Promotion Center (Yoshimi) 衛生研究所・荒川荘 and alight at the “Nogai katsudo” center 野外活動センター入口.

By car it is about 4 kilometers from the Okegawa-Kitamoto Interchange of the Ken-o expressway. There is parking for about 140 cars. There are two separate car parks. One is on the west end down by the Arakawa River. The other is on the east side.

Official website.

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