Wednesday, March 02, 2016

Peach Blossoms - Tsukikawa Onsen

The best part about living in Nagoya is that it is well connected with most parts of Japan. And for travel enthusiasts like my family, it gives us quick access to many tourist spots- be it the historical cities like Kyoto or Nara, the urban cities of Osaka and Kyoto or the scenic areas in neighboring Gifu or Nagano prefectures. There is so much to see and so many places to go that in the last couple of years since moving to Nagoya, we haven't felt that we are running out of places to visit. There is always some new spot to explore. And thanks to the 4 distinct seasons that Japan experiences, we get to choose which spot to visit in which particular season. One such spot that we got to visit in spring this year is the Tsukikawa Onsen- Hirugami Onsen area in neighboring Nagano prefecture.
Tsukikawa Onsen- Hirugami Onsen area is well known for the Ornamental Peach blossoms betwen mid April and early May every year. Hundreds of Peach trees laden with bright pink, crimson and white blossoms give the area a fairy tale kind of atmosphere. 
The road along the Achi river bank is flanked by Peach trees and is known as 'Hanamomo Kaido', Japanese for Peach Blossom Road.  


Japan's cherry blossoms are so well known that they are regarded as a symbol of Japan, and they actually overshadow the beauty of the other blossoms that the country sees in Spring each year. 



The plum blossoms and peach blossoms are equally beautiful in my 
opinion.

The peach blossoms cover a wide area around the Achi river.




The map below shows the spots where one can enjoy Peach blossoms. The map was translated into English by my friend, an expat and outdoor person just like me ! 
Since the Peach blossom period is closer to the Japanese holiday of Children's Day, ('Kodomo no Hi' in Japanese), we saw Carp streamers ( Koi-nobori in Japanese) flying high near the Hanamomo Kaido. Some of the Carp streamers were huge and it was fun for kids trying to hold on to them. 

Like most Blossom viewing spots, Tsukikawa-Hirugami onsen area also organises a Peach Blossom festival around the peak period and attracts lots of visitors. Fortunately for us, we happened to visit the area a day prior to the commencement of the festival and were spared of crowds. 



Preparations for the event were in full swing. We got to walk around leisurely and finding a parking spot was easy too. Since the dates vary each year due to the weather conditions, I would recommend visitors to check the exact dates on the website link below.    

Website (Japanese) : http://hirugamionsen.jp/sightseeing/photogallery/hanamomo/

Address: Nagano Prefecture 395-0304, Shimoina gun, Achi mura, Chisato 4174-1


Phone : 0265-44-2321


Parking: Paid parking available during the Peach blossom festival event


Entrance : Free


Opening Hours: Always open


Best time to visit: Mid April- Early May; check website for exact dates 

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