DC's cherry blossom season is the perfect time to celebrate the pink-and-white blooms and learn about Japan and Japanese culture. Feeling inspired to plan your own Japan-inspired adventure? From cooking classes, sake, art and performances, bonsai and more, you can still get up close and personal with Japan even if you're not able to hop on a plane and travel there.
Check out our recommendations for ways to elevate this spring's cherry blossom viewing and experience Japanese culture right here in DC!
Cherry blossom season isn't complete without experiencing this ancient Japanese rice wine
In Japan, there’s a long tradition of cherry blossom viewing, or Hanami, which includes picnics with snacks and sake in the park under the trees with family and friends. I fondly remember spending all day at the cherry blossom festival when my family lived in Okinawa. It felt like everyone on the island had converged to the same point at the same time, much like the people that crowd the Tidal Basin during peak bloom.
Sake's popularity has finally found footing in the US. Sake today is where wine was in the 1980s—transitioning from a bourgeois beverage for special occasions to the mainstream. has grown over the years. Luckily, several DC restaurants have large sake selections, diverse picks and knowledgeable servers to help you create your own Hanami experience.
Here are several places around town to broaden and educate your sake palate.
Look up, down, and all around. Adventures can be found everywhere -- if you're curious enough to look. k for it