Tokyo in Pics


A photography blog about Tokyo, run by Australian photographer Rohan Gillett

Cherry blossoms at Chidorigafuchi - 2017

Well, Tokyo is having the weirdest cherry blossom season in 2017.  I don't know what the official record says but as far as I'm concerned it has been a very, very late one.  It was supposed to have started a week ago so I guess some people were annoyed last weekend that it was cold so the trees were absolutely nothing to look at.  Pretty much everything fizzed out.  But I guess it depends on who you are as I had to work last Sunday so in the end I didn’t miss out on anything.  This late start proved to be a huge benefit to me.

Not quite in full bloom, but I thought that the cherry blossoms at Chidorigafuchi were looking pretty good

So I decided to go to Chidorigafuchi.  I know it has a great reputation as it is really beautiful place for cherry blossoms especially when all the boats are out on the pond under the trees but I've never really liked the place.  Why?  Because during the cherry blossom season it gets insanely crowded.  At times the paths are so crowded it is hard to move ahead.  It can be like a mosh pit.  People bouncing off other people as they try to move around.  The cherry blossom mosh pit.  Enter at your own risk.

Crowded again in 2017, but not as crowded as other years

However, this time, as I had arrived before the lunchtime crowd the mosh pit was nowhere to be seen.  By arriving at 11 am I had beaten the lunchtime crowd so walking and taking pictures was relatively easy.  Even the deck above the boathouse had some space on it!  It was almost ... kind of ... well, it was pleasant!  Quite pleasant!

The trees weren't quite at their best but due to the lack of crowds that was ok!  I didn't mind.  Not at all.  Move a little, take a shot, move a little, take a shot and keep repeating.  No bouncing off people as in previous years.  In the end I was satisfied with the shots I got.  Thumbs up for a change.

There is something wrong with this area? Why only two boats?

I'm guessing in one or maybe two more days the trees will be in full bloom.  Probably then the mosh pit will be back?  I don't know and I don't care because I have my pictures and won't need to go back until next year.  So, take that Mosh Pit, I beat you this year!

Need some daytime romance? A boat ride on the moat at Chidorigafuchi during the cherry blossom season is the place to do it

On a slightly more serious note I did learn something very useful.  Chidorigafuchi has toilets there if you need them, but during this season they have a line that is nearly a mile long.  This time I learned that if you just walk over the road to the Chidorigafuchi National Cemetery there are toilets there that no one uses.  No lines at all, only a few tens of meters away and right near the entrance too!

If you are free tomorrow or the next day pop over to Chidorigafuchi and check out the trees because they will be looking very nice!  Just beware the mosh pit if you go at lunchtime!